Keeper of Eastern Art

Mallica Kumbera Landrus
Dr Mallica Kumbera Landrus

University webpages:
Oriental Institute
Saïd Business School

Research summary
Dr Mallica Kumbera Landrus is Keeper of the Eastern Art Department where the collections include ceramics, textiles, sculpture, metalwork, paintings, prints and other decorative arts that span more than 5,000 years of cultural and artistic development in Asia. Her curatorial responsibilities are mainly in the area of Indian, Himalayan and Southeast Asian art. As Associate Professor for the History of Art in India her remit at Oxford includes teaching and research in Indian material and visual culture. She is a Fellow of St Cross College.

Dr Kumbera Landrus specializes in the history of art and architecture in India, particularly with regard to the intersection of art, architecture, religion, politics and socio-economics. She is especially interested in issues of cultural translation, focusing on works and built environments created for and by colonial powers, and by emerging cultures that were themselves hybrid, transnational and diasporic.
Dr Kumbera Landrus was Andrew W. Mellon Teaching Curator for the Ashmolean Museum’s University Engagement Programme (UEP) between 2012 and 2017. Before Oxford, she was a senior lecturer at the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) while simultaneously holding teaching, research, curatorial and/or management posts at institutes such as Princeton University, Brown University and the Jaipur City Palace Museum. She was the first Director of Princeton’s Global Seminar Programme in India. In the late 1990s, she was a member of the Torre de Palma excavation in Portugal, one of the largest Roman villas in Iberia. 
Featured publications
  • "Parish Churches, Colonisation and Conversion in Sixteenth Century Portuguese Goa," in Parish Churches in the Early Modern World, ed. Andrew Spicer, Ashgate, 2015.
  • Yoshida Hiroshi: A Japanese artist in India, Ashmolean Museum, Oxford, 19 June–13 September 2015, (Kolkata). Edited by C Pollard and M Kumbera Landrus.
  • Bengal and Modernity: Early 20th century art in India, Ashmolean Museum, Oxford, 2 March–1 June 2015 (Kolkata). Contributors: S Bhandare, M Kumbera Landrus, A Lahiri, P Mitter and P Pal.
  • “Trans-cultural Temples: Identity and Practice in Goa,” in In the Shadow of the Golden Age, ed. Julia Hegewald, EB Verlag, Berlin 2014. 
  • ‘Sculptures from Kerala: Form and Performance", in Marg Publications, Mumbai, March 2014.
  • “Women Representing Women,” in Tradition, Trauma, Transformation: Representations of Women, Brown University, March 2011.
  • “Early Masterpieces, 1950s–70s” in MF Husain, Brown University, February 2010.
  • “Goa: the Rome of the Orient,” in Baroque, 1620–1800: Style in the Age of Magnificence, eds. Nigel Llewellyn and Michael Snodin. London: V & A Publishing, 2009.
  • Catalogue entries on the Indian objects [Buddhist, Hindu, Islamic and Colonial] in Selected Works, Catalogue of the Museum of Art, Rhode Island School of Design, Providence 2008, pp. 48–52.
  • “Portuguese Goa – Taking Ownership with Architecture,” in Vanamala, ed. Klaus Bruhn and Gerd Mevissen, Wiedler Buchverlag, Berlin, 2006, pp. 97–107.
  • “Vijayanagara Art: A Political and Historical Metaphor,” in Sagar 10 (University of Texas at Austin, 2003) 78–101.