2023 Rubinoff Awardees

Daniela O’Fee – 2023 JRSP Site Specific Sound Art

 Daniela O’FeeTransmissions: Sonic Improvisations on the Sculptures of Jeffrey Rubinoff

During the 2024 Company of Ideas Forum Daniella shared examples of her practice around nature scores, graphic sonification and soundwalking as experimental approaches between visual and sonic culture. Relating music theory ideas of atonality and silence to visual concepts of abstraction and negative space will address intermedia possibilities for lateral modes of social dialogue. She applied the process of using extended instrumental techniques to create her new audio work Transmissions: Sonic Improvisations on the Sculptures of Jeffrey Rubinoff will pose how the exercise of remote interpretation can shift the sensory experience across time and space.

Jess Conn Potegal – 2023 JRSP Site Specifc Sound Art

Jess-Conn-Potegal Sculpture in Elastic Space

Musician and sound art creator Jess Conn-Potegal proposed to investigate how live, informal interpretation of Jeffrey Rubinoff’s sculpture might directly and indirectly influence sounds, moods, tonal qualities, and structures in improvised music. Together with JRSP Curator Karun Koernig, they explored real time musical interaction and response to Rubinoff’s work. The resulting project was planned as a first step in creating a unique soundtrack for the park that would ‘evoke the experience of the sublime’ and function as an initial experiment toward intuitively interpreting the park experience in aural form.

The methodology involved capturing live improvisations of musicians interacting with the sculptures, and then arranging and remixing the recordings in an in-situ temporary studio. A central idea was to explore the harmonics of the sculptures and their materials literally by using mallets and contact microphones to capture the sounds of ‘playing’ the forms. The artists also examined various creative decisions through a rubric influenced by the sculpture and park including elements like tempo, silence, singularity, relationality, materiality, monumentality, analogy, timbre, tension, pitch, repetition, and expectation. Through experimentation and improvisation, the artists aimed to convey the awe of the setting and the scale of Jeffrey’s vision while respecting the complexity of the sculptures and the park experience overall.

The resulting experimental composition embraced a soundscape approach, using recordings of the sculptures and metal-based instruments to relate to the materials along with field recordings that reflect the natural environment. The abstract nature of the piece allowed for a perceptual exploration of the sculpture’s qualities, resulting in an experimental proof-of-concept compositional flow that largely echoed the artists’ initial experiences and intentions, and opening the door to further exploration.

2022 Rubinoff Awardees

Anahí González – 2022 JRSP Guest Curator Award Winner

Anahí GonzálezAnahí González is a visual artist, scholar and curator based in London, Ontario. She was selected in December 2022 to produce an exhibit at the JRSP on Rubinoff’s 70’s era White Oaks sculptures. Most recently, she was part of the AGO x RBC Emerging Artist Exchange program working on the Latin American collection. She guest curated Migration Stories Whispered in My Ear / Me Susurran Al Oído Historias de Migrantes at McIntosh Gallery and co-curated Symphony of Lights at the ArtLab. Gonzaléz graduated with a Master of Visual Arts from Western University. She is currently working towards a Ph.D. in Art and Visual Culture at Western University, with an interest in photography and human labour.

She has held programming and juror positions at Forest City Gallery, Museum London, and UAdeC (Universidad Autonoma de Coahuila, Mexico). She is Contributing Editor at Embassy Cultural House and a Research Associate of the Creative Food Research Collaboratory. Her work has been included in exhibitions and screenings in countries such as Mexico, Norway, Canada, Spain, and France.

University of Victoria Rubinoff Scholars 

Anna O’Meara — Jeffrey Rubinoff Scholar in Art as a Source of Knowledge

Anna O’Meara is currently the Jeffrey Rubinoff Scholar in Art as a Source of Knowledge at the University of Victoria. She studies symbolism in the films of the avant-garde Situationist International (1957-1972), focusing on transhistorical concepts of time and the rituals of modern life. In 2022, she co-edited a critical volume showcasing the Situationists’ polemical pamphlet, On the Poverty of Student Life, with Mehdi El Hajoui. In this volume, she considered how the 1968 student riots in France were influenced by Zengakuren, a radical Japanese student union. Anna has presented papers at the annual conferences of the College Art Association and Researching New York. She has also received a Foreign Language and Area Studies (FLAS) grant to study Arabic and a Nanovic Institute grant to conduct research at the Bibliothèque Nationale de France (BnF).
Unceded WSÁNEC & Lekwungen (Songhees & Esquimalt) Territories (Victoria, Canada)

2021 Rubinoff Awardees

Parysa Mostajir – 2021 JRSP Post Doctoral Award Winner

Parysa Mostajir is a Teaching Fellow at the University of Chicago in Conceptual and Historical Studies of Science, with degrees in philosophy, history of science, and archaeology and anthropology. Her interdisciplinary research analyzes the relationship between the cognitive processes of science and the aesthetic processes of art, and frames them as distinct, complementary, and mutually irreducible practices in human life. Inspired by John Dewey’s aesthetics and philosophy of science, she is currently developing a concept of ‘aesthetic technology’ to describe the methods by which art can serve crucial functions in democratic societies, including communicating the lived experience of diversely situated citizens and conducting powerful critiques and transformations of shared institutions and concepts.

Her article “Reading The Idea of History through The Principles of Art: Collingwood on Communication and Emotions” was published in the Journal of the Philosophy of History, and can be found at

Alisha Dietzman – 2021 Short List Art & Knowledge Award

 Alisha Dietzman received her MFA in Poetry from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where she held a Martha Meier Renk Distinguished Graduate Fellowship. She is a PhD candidate in Divinity focusing an aesthetics and ethics at the University of St Andrews, supported by a grant from the US-UK Fulbright Commission. Her research examines discourses of identity and authenticity in contemporary art, with a particular eye to the ethical ramifications of representation.

Jenny Tang – 2021 Short List Art & Knowledge Award

Jenny Tang is a historian of modern and contemporary art and media and an independent curator. Their interdisciplinary research centers on the relation between race and gender, governmentality, and aesthetics. They are a joint PhD candidate in History of Art and Film & Media Studies at Yale University, where they are completing a dissertation on carceral logics of visuality in mid-twentieth century Atlantic modernism. For 2020-21, they are also a Mellon-Marron Research Consortium Fellow in the Department of Painting and Sculpture at the Museum of Modern Art, NY.

Jeremy Page – 2021 Short List Art & Knowledge Award

 Jeremy Page is a doctoral candidate in Philosophy at Uppsala University and Editorial Assistant at the British Journal of Aesthetics. His current research develops a comprehensive new cognitivism in aesthetics that attempts to explain art’s cognitive value and the normative structure of aesthetic appreciation. In 2020, he won the Fabian Dorsch Essay Prize of the European Society of Aesthetics for a paper entitled ‘Aesthetic Understanding’. He will be a visiting researcher at Auburn University in autumn 2021 and at Birkbeck College in early 2022. Jeremy also works on the epistemology of understanding, value theory, the ethics and aesthetics of cultural heritage and the philosophy of Friedrich Nietzsche. For more info visit

Julia Sanchez-Dorado – 2021 Short List Art & Knowledge Award

Julia Sánchez-Dorado is an Alexander von Humboldt Postdoctoral Fellow at the Technical University of Berlin (Institute of History and Philosophy of Science, Technology, and Literature). She completed her PhD in Philosophy of Science at University College London, and held a Visiting Postdoctoral Fellowship at the Max Planck Institute for the History of Science, Berlin. Her current research interest lies in the understanding of how scientists and artists afford epistemic access to the world through abstract representations. Key part of this investigation consists in elucidating how creativity, rationality, and community standards are integrated in such abstractions. For more info visit Julia Sánchez-Dorado’s personal website

Julia’s recent work on the relations between art and understanding, as well as the aesthetic values involved in the production of scientific knowledge has been published in the British Journal of Aesthetics. Her article can be viewed here:

Sanchez-Dorado, Julia. British Journal of Aesthetics. Review


Vanessa Brassey – 2021 Short List Art & Knowledge Award

Dr Vanessa Brassey (Philosophy Lecturer, Co-Director of the Centre for Philosophy and Visual Arts CPVA).
Dr Brassey completed her PhD in Philosophy at King’s College London in September 2020 and joined the faculty as a full-time lecturer. Brassey’s research focusses on the malleability and adeptness of our imaginative perspective-taking. This may involve spatial changes (imagine you are looking down on yourself) and temporal changes (imagine you are sat exactly where you are but in 10 years time). She uses these gateway cases to get to grips with empathic shifts. Understanding these shifts, she argues, contributes to our understanding of art. Because these kinds of shifts enable us, as competent appreciators of art, to disclose the experiential and affective value of artworks.

2020 Rubinoff Awardees

Lucy Whelan – 2020 JRSP Post Doctoral Award Winner

Dr Lucy Whelan is an Honorary Fellow at Durham University. She was previously an Alfred Toepfer Stiftung Scholar at the Humboldt University in Berlin, following her doctorate at Oxford University that she completed in 2018. Her research centres on modern art in France and Germany. She is interested in seeing the art of this period as a form of knowledge or enquiry, particularly as it relates to questions of visual perception, time, landscape, and the relation between nature and culture. Her first book project explores some of these questions in relation to the modern artist Pierre Bonnard, and she is also beginning a new project that examines European modern art from an ecological perspective.

2019 Rubinoff Awardees

James Nguyen – 2019 JRSP Post Doctoral Award Winner

2018 JRSP Postdoctoral Award-holder James Nguyen studied philosophy at the University of Cambridge, King’s College London, and the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) where he was awarded a PhD in the philosophy of science. He was then a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Notre Dame. He is currently the Jacobsen Fellow, cross-appointed at University College London, and the School of Advanced Study, University of London; a research associate of the Centre for Philosophy of Natural and Social Science, LSE; and holds a British Academy Rising Star Engagement Award. His current research lies in the intersection of the philosophy of science and art where he is working on questions concerning the epistemic value of art and the nature of inter/multi/trans-disciplinary research.

Zach Weinstein – 2019 JRSP Graduate Essay Award Winner

Zach Weinstein’s interests are in the philosophy of art, mind, and language. He is particularly interested in topics at the intersection of these areas, like artistic meaning. He completed his BA at Swarthmore College, his MA at the New School for Social Research, and is currently a doctoral candidate at the University of Toronto. You can find more information at

2018 Rubinoff Awardees

Lieke Wijnia – 2018 Rubinoff Post Doctoral Awardee

Dr. Lieke Wijnia lectures Art History at University College Tilburg and is a research fellow of the Center for Religion and Heritage at the University of Groningen. In 2016 she defended her PhD research, on perceptions of the sacred at Festival Musica Sacra Maastricht, cum laude at Tilburg University. Her research explores the relationship between modern art and religious heritage, with a particular focus on the work of Piet Mondrian.

Amanda Balter – 2018 Rubinoff Graduate Essay Awardee

Amanda Balter graduated with summa cum laude from Rocky Mountain College, Montana, where she majored in Philosophy & Religious Thought. She is also an Administrative Assistant at Vision Beyond Borders. In the future, she hopes to pursue graduate study in the liberal arts.

Danielle Rudermann – 2018 JRSP Rubinoff Guest Curator

Danielle Ruderman studied art history and history graduating from Queen’s University in spring 2018 with a Bachelor of Arts Honours. Throughout her time at Queen’s she has explored projects in sculptural materiality, Gothic revival, and the visual arts. Art and arts education have played an important and central role in her life, resulting in her interest in the Jeffrey Rubinoff Sculpture Park and the significance it places on art as a key source of knowledge.

University of Victoria Jeffrey Rubinoff PhD Scholar in Art as a Source of Knowledge

Ambreen Hussaini – 2018-21 University of Victoria Rubinoff PhD Scholar in Art as a Source of Knowledge

Ambreen Shehzad Hussaini is currently pursuing her doctoral studies at University of Victoria – Art History and Visual Studies Department. Before coming to Canada, she completed a two-years degree programme entitled Master of Arts in Muslim Cultures at the Aga Khan University – Institute for the study of Muslim Civilizations in the UK. She completed her Master of Arts in Islamic Studies from University of Karachi and a one-year diploma in Arabic Language from the Society for the promotion of Arabic Language, Pakistan. She also studied Fine Arts from Karachi School of Arts and earned a Diploma in Multimedia from Arena Multimedia. Her current research focuses on the contemporary artistic expressions of the Qur’an.

Churchill College, Cambridge University, Jeffrey Rubinoff Junior Research Fellow in Art as a Source of Knowledge

Joshua Fitzgerald – 2019-24 Jeffrey Rubinoff Junior Research Fellow in Art as a Source of Knowledge

Joshua studies the History of Education for Native American communities living in Central Mexico in the 14th to 17th centuries (before and after the Spanish Conquest of Mexico). His larger interests delve into indigenous ways of learning, sacred landscapes, Mesoamerican conceptualizations of human-animal intelligence and trans-species communication, and continuities and changes in religious/sacred art after moments of cultural trauma. He has several projects underway, including a few articles, and a translation/transcription with commentary of indigenous-language texts. He is undertaking a book project from his dissertation, “Unholy Pedagogy: Local Knowledge, Indigenous Intermediaries, and the Lessons from the Spanish Colonial Learningscape, 1400 to 1650”. The project examined pre-Columbian manuscripts and archaeological data, and Nahuatl and Spanish texts, pictorial manuscripts, and architectural ornamentation from the Colonial Period, especially from the Valley of Mexico and the Puebla-Tlaxcala Valley.

Read More

One of his key contributions is a new interpretation of learning environments and instructional tools from the period. Some in the field of ethnohistory have investigated the importance of Native and European contributions to colonial pedagogy and it has been proposed that Spanish Catholic priests extinguished indigenous practices and imposed Christian ones from the top-down. Joshua’s work locates more agency to the indigenous students and student-teachers, and it introduces underutilized critical place-identity theory into the discourse. He argues that our interpretations of local visions of and practices within learning environments (“learningscapes”) need to consider the importance of the source community’s attachment to place — as found in the locally-sourced art and architecture made by indigenous artists and authors. By locating the ways that students shape schools because of their local identity, his work sheds light on histories that have all too often been ignored.

Vid Simoniti – 2016-19 Jeffrey Rubinoff Junior Research Fellow in Art as a Source of Knowledge

The four-year junior research fellowship, starting in October 2015, has been set up to enable a promising early career scholar to undertake work on the topic of art as a source of knowledge. Simoniti’s project ‘Artist as a Thinker: From Conceptual Art to Artistic Research’ will investigate the idea that art, like science, can amount to a kind of research. In the time when artists make work as residents in universities, museums and even scientific laboratories, has art become just another academic discipline? Drawing on case studies from Eastern and Western Europe, Simoniti’s work will uncover the historical and philosophical background to this question. The project proposal grew out of several exhibitions that Simoniti has curated while working alongside artistic researchers on the Ruskin doctoral programme. It will also build on his recently completed doctoral thesis, ‘The Epistemic Value in Contemporary Art’, in which he investigates the relationship between artistic and philosophical modes of thinking.*

Read More

Following the Fellowship Vid accepted a position as Lecturer in Philosophy at the University of Liverpool. His academic work is in aesthetics, especially on the political dimension of contemporary art. In recent publications he has considered socially engaged art, the anti-racist art of the conceptual artist Adrian Piper, and artists’ use of biotechnology. He is also interested in the history of aesthetics (especially Schopenhauer, Nietzsche, the Frankfurt School) and in philosophy of literature. Before joining the department at Liverpool in 2018, he was the Jeffrey Rubinoff Junior Research Fellow at Churchill College, the University of Cambridge, where he taught in both History of Art and Philosophy departments. He obtained his doctorate (D.Phil.) from the University of Oxford in 2015.



The Rubinoff Awards

Each year the JRSP selects one postdoctoral researcher from anywhere in the world who is making an outstanding contribution to the furthering our understanding of art as a source of knowledge. The postdoctoral awardee presents her or his research at the annual Company of Ideas Forum.

We are currently developing an award for artists or creative works inspired by the work or thought of Jeffrey Rubinoff, as well as an educators matching fund to facilitate group visits to the Park. 

The University of Victoria Scholarship in Art as a Source of Knowledge

The JRSP has endowed the Art History and Visual Studies department with a PhD Scholarship Full Tuition Award for a student whose dissertation aligns with the theme of art and knowledge. The student attends the annual Company of Ideas Forum along with their faculty advisor and several other graduate students.


Churchill College, Cambridge University Rubinoff Junior Research Fellow in Art as a Source of Knowledge

The Rubinoff Junior Research Fellow is a postdoctoral research position at the University of Cambridge (UK). In addition to independent research and potentially teaching, the Fellow also attends, and at times co-convenes, the annual Company of Ideas Forums.