Melissa Hyde received her PhD in the History of Art from the University of California, Berkeley. She holds an honorary doctorate from her alma mater, Colorado College, where she majored in History. Her field is eighteenth- and nineteenth-century European art. Her scholarly interests include: Rococo art, women artists, the gendering of aesthetic culture, the cultural meanings of color, self-portraiture, and questions of identity and place. A faculty member since 1998, she teaches courses on European art (ca. 1650-1830), as well as courses on gender and the visual arts from the late Renaissance to the early nineteenth century, and has taught in UF's study abroad programs in Paris and Florence. She has served as research mentor to undergraduate students in the University Scholars Program, the Emerging Scholars and McNair Programs, and in the University Minority Mentoring Program. A past recipient of her College's Teacher of the Year Award, she also has been recognized twice as COTA International Educator of the Year. In 2017, she was College of the Arts' Teacher-Scholar of the Year, and the College's nominee for UF's Distinguished Alumni Professor. She was elected to the University of Florida's Academy of Distinguished Teaching Scholars in 2018. In 2022 she was recipient of COTA's Outstanding Doctoral Mentoring Award. Hyde's research has been acknowleded at UF by numerous awards and grants, including two UF Research Foundation Professorships, and a University Term Professorship.
Hyde's research and publications focus on gender and visual culture in eighteenth-century France. Her work has appeared in The Art Bulletin, Eighteenth-Century Studies, Studies in Eighteenth-Century Culture and many volumes of collected essays. Her books include Making Up the Rococo: François Boucher and his Critics (2006), and numerous co-edited volumes. One of Hyde's major research projects in recent years was an exhibition and accompanying catalogue of eighteenth- and early nineteenth-century French drawings from The Horvitz Collection in Boston, entitled Becoming a Woman in the Age of Enlightenment. The exhibition opened at the Harn in fall of 2017, before traveling the Ackland Museum of Art, UNC Chapel Hill, The Crocker Museum of Art in Sacramento and the Smith College Museum of Art. Hyde collaborated with the late Mary D. Sheriff, W.R. Kenan, Jr. Distinguished Professor of Art History at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill as a guest curator for this exhibition. Hyde is co-editor of a forthcoming volume of essays,Thinking Women and Eighteenth-Century Art: Strategic Reinterpretations, based on a major symposium held in Sheriff's honor at the Harn in conjunction with the exhibition. In 2009, Hyde and Sheriff were recipients of the inaugural Mellor Prize, an award bestowed by the National Museum of Women in the Arts (NMWA), for their book proposal, Women in French Art. Rococo to Romanticism 1750-1830. The fruits of that project are now being published in individual articles and book chapters. Meanwhile, Hyde is completing a book entitled, Painted by Herself: Marie-Suzanne Giroust: Madame Roslin, the Forgotten Académicienne.
Professor Hyde acted as consulting curator for an exhibition on eighteenth- and nineteenth-century women artists entitled Royalists to Romantics (NMWA, 2012) and has written catalogue essays for this and other exhibitions at the National Gallery, DC, the Nationalmuseum, Stockholm and Cooper Hewitt Museum of Design, NYC, and most recently at the Musée du Luxembourg, Paris, and the Staatliche Kunsthalle in Karlsuhe. She is author of two recent essays on the contemporary pastel artist, Nicolas Party.
Melissa Hyde's research has been supported by the American Association of University Women and the Getty Research Institute, the Clark Art Institute and at the Institut national de l’histoire d’art (INHA), Paris. In fall 2020, she was Ailsa Mellon Bruce Visiting Senior Fellow at the Center for Advanced Study in the Visual Arts (CASVA) at the National Gallery of Art, Washington DC. She is a past president of the Historians of Eighteenth-Century Art and Architecture (HECAA), and a Past President of the American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies (2018-19). She has served on the Executive Board of the International Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies; as an Advisory Editor for Eighteenth-Century Studies, an Editorial Board member of Oxford University Studies in the Enlightenment and of H-France for which she now serves as the Book Forum Editor for Art History . Hyde is co-editor of a new book series on eighteenth-century women artists, part of the Illuminating Women Artists series published by Lund-Humprhies and the Getty.
“Brought into Friendship: Portraits of Amitié and the Amitié of Portraits. Madame de Genlis, Adélaïde Labille-Guiard, Gabrielle Capet and Beyond,” in Feminist Friendships, Collaborations and Networks in the Visual Arts. (Essays in Honor of Norma Broude and Mary Garrard), eds. J. Griffiths, A. Pearson an Sheila Barker (to be published by Brepols, 2024).
Museum Catalogue Essays