Carol Mavor is a professor of art history and visual studies at the University of Manchester. Her work has been widely acknowledged and reviewed in publications in the US and UK, including the New Yorker, the Times Literary Supplement, and the Village Voice.
She began her academic studies in studio art. Before embarking on her PhD at the University of California, she completed an MFA at the University of California–San Diego at the end of conceptual art under the tutelage of anti-art and performance greats like Allan Kaprow and Eleanor Antin.
On October 11 Mavor will be speaking about her most recent book Blue Mythologies: Reflections on a Colour (2013). The blues of Blue Mythologies include those present in the world’s religions, eggs, science, slavery, gender, sex, art, the literary past, and contemporary film. Carol Mavor’s engaging and elegiac readings in this beautifully illustrated book takes the reader from the blue of a newborn baby’s eyes to Giotto’s frescoes at Padua, and from the films of Derek Jarman and Krzysztof Kiéslowski to the islands of Venice and Aran. In an echo of Roland Barthes’ essays in Mythologies, blue is unleashed as our most familiar and most paradoxical color. At once historical, sociological, literary, and visual, Blue Mythologies gives us a fresh and contemplative look into the traditions, tales, and connotations of those somethings blue.
She is the author of four other books: Black and Blue: The Bruising Passion of Camera Lucida, La Jetée, Sans soleil, and Hiroshima mon amour (2012); Reading Boyishly: Roland Barthes, J. M. Barrie, Jacques Henri Lartigue, Marcel Proust, and D. W. Winnicott (2007); Becoming: The Photographs of Clementina, Viscountess Hawarden (1999); and Pleasures Taken: Performances of Sexuality and Loss in Victorian Photographs (1995), all published by Duke University Press.