Adam M. Thomas

Dr. Adam M. Thomas
Dr. Adam M. Thomas

Curator of American Art, Palmer Museum of Art

Affiliate Assistant Professor of Art History


Palmer Museum | 3rd floor


  • Ph.D. and M.A. in art history (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign)
  • B.A. in art history and English (New York University)

Specialty Area: 

Art and Visual Culture of the United States


Dr. Thomas specializes in the art and visual culture of the United States. His curatorial and scholarly interests range across the full span of American art but focus on the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries and are particularly alive to American literary, philosophical, and scientific histories. Before coming to Penn State in 2015, he taught at Bridgewater State University in 2014–15 and was the Douglass Foundation Predoctoral Fellow at the Smithsonian American Art Museum in 2012–13. He has worked on exhibitions at several museums nationwide, including the Indianapolis Museum of Art, the National Gallery of Art, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. His publications include essays in the exhibition catalogues Bold, Cautious, True: Walt Whitman and American Art of the Civil War Era (2009) and Wild Spaces, Open Seasons: Hunting and Fishing in American Art (2016).