Dr. Tamara Sears
Specialization: History of Art
Home institution in US: Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut
Host Institution in India: Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi  
Start date/Month in India: September 2012
Duration of grant: 6 months

Brief Bio:
Dr. Tamara Sears specializes in the architectural and sculptural history of the Indian subcontinent with particular interest in the intersection between art, religion, urbanism, and courtly culture in north and central India. She recently completed a book on early medieval Hindu monastic architecture, and she is currently working on a new project that examines the relationship between architectural production, river landscapes and routes of travel around the turn of the first millennium. She currently teaches as an assistant professor in the Department of the History of Art at Yale University, where she is also an active participant in the South Asian Studies Council. Her essays have appeared in The Art Bulletin, Archives of Asian Art and South Asian Studies. She has received fellowships from Fulbright-Hays and the Getty Foundation, and she has served on the board of the American Council of Southern Asian Art.

Dr. Sears’ Fulbright project, “Following ‘Rivers of Honey’: Mobility, Urbanism, and Artistic Exchange before the Modern Global Age,” examines the interconnectedness of places and the making of new routes through medieval central India by focusing on a cluster of temple towns that emerged rapidly in central India around the turn of the first millennium. Located along a river, known then as the Madhumati, these towns functioned as indexes of human mobility and rapid cultural exchanges expressed through architectural and literary production. Although located in areas that remain quite rural today, these temple towns attest to a dynamism that occurred at scales and speeds more often associated with postcolonial rather than pre-colonial worlds.