Jill Burke grew up in Leeds before doing a History BA at Oxford, then going on to an MA and PhD in Renaissance Art History at the Courtauld Institute in London. Her PhD, "Form and Power: Patronage and the Visual Arts in Renaissance Florence", involved extensive archival work in Florence, and was awarded in 1999. She taught at the University of Kent, Courtauld Institute and Open University before being awarded a Deborah Loeb Brice Fellowship at the Harvard University Center for Italian Renaissance Studies in Florence 2000-1.
After some time teaching in Florence and having her first child, she became a research fellow at the University of Edinburgh on the AHRC-funded "Court Culture in Early Modern Rome" project in 2003. This lead to two edited books (Art and Identity in Early Modern Rome and Rethinking the High Renaissance) and a permanent lecturer's post at Edinburgh from 2006 - her second child was born later this year. She won the Philip Leverhulme Prize in 2011 and since then has been working on various aspects of renaissance art relating to the body.
Jill's teaching is directly derived from her research. She currently teaches one 3rd year course "Looking at Women in Renaissance Art" that considers women both as makers and as people represented in European art 1400-1600. Her fourth-year honours class, "The Renaissance Body" is an interdisciplinary feast of nudes, monsters and innards, considering how the body in representation reflects and informs understandings of corporality in this period. At MSc level, "Art and Sexuality in Renaissance Italy" considers the role of homoeroticism, courtesan culture and desire in Renaissance visual representation.
Italian Renaissance visual culture, gender and the body