Charlotte M. Houghton

Dr. Charlotte M. Houghton
Dr. Charlotte M. Houghton

Associate Professor Emerita of Art History


206 Borland Building | University Park, PA 16802
(814) 865-4887


  • Ph.D. in art history (Duke University)
  • J.D., Boalt Hall School of Law (University of California, Berkeley)
  • A.B. in history (Harvard University)

Specialty Area: 

Northern European Art, 1400-1750


Dr. Houghton teaches courses and supervises graduate theses in northern European art, 1400–1750. Before coming to Penn State in 1999, she taught at Duke University. She has been the recipient of both a Prado Museum/Duke University Research Residency in Madrid, Spain, and a Fulbright Fellowship to Belgium. She has published in The Burlington Magazine, and her “This Was Tomorrow: Pieter Aertsen’s Meat Stall as Contemporary Art” was The Art Bulletin’s cover article in June 2004. For this, she received the College of Arts and Architecture’s 2005 Roy C. Buck Award for Outstanding Publication. Dr. Houghton has also reviewed books for journals including Renaissance Quarterly and Sixteenth Century Journal. Her essay, “Polemics, Politics and Pleasure in Renaissance Studies,” appeared in Routledge’s Renaissance Theory in 2008. Her research interests include the social and political functions of early modern art, as well as issues of sexuality and queerness in Renaissance imagery. She has presented papers before the College Art Association, the Association of Art Historians (England), and the Renaissance Society of America. Her book projects includeEros and Erasure in Michelangelo’s Early Sacred Art and Imago Ludens: Playfulness in Early Netherlandish Art. She is the recipient of many educational awards, including the College of Arts and Architecture 2001 Faculty Award for Outstanding Teaching and a 2007 Penn State Alumni Association Award for Excellence in Teaching, one of three awarded across the twenty-four campuses of the Penn State system.