Christiane Gruber is Professor of Islamic art in the History of Art Department at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. Her primary field of research is Islamic book arts, paintings of the Prophet Muhammad, and Islamic ascension texts and images, about which she has written three books and edited several volumes of articles. She also pursues research in Islamic book arts and codicology, having authored the online catalogue of Islamic calligraphies in the Library of Congress as well as edited the volume of articles entitled The Islamic Manuscript Tradition. Her third field of specialization is modern Islamic visual and material culture, about which she has written half a dozen articles. She also has co-edited two volumes on Islamic and cross-cultural visual cultures. Her most recent publications include her book The Praiseworthy One: The Prophet Muhammad in Islamic Texts and Images and her edited volume The Image Debate: Figural Representation in Islam and Across the World, both published in 2019.
Her public-facing essays have appeared in Newsweek, The Conversation, New Lines Magazine, Jadaliyya, and Prospect Magazine, and over the years her research has been supported by a number of grants and fellowships, including the Guggenheim Foundation, Max-Planck Foundation, the Mellon Foundation, the Council on Library and Information Resources, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the American Research Institute in Turkey, the American Institute of Iranian Studies, the American Research Center in Egypt, and Fulbright-Hays. Over the past two decades, she has taught art history at the University of Michigan, Indiana University, Humboldt University, and Sorbonne University. From 2008 to 2010, she served as a board member of the Historians of Islamic Art Association (HIAA) as well as editor of the scholarly listserv H-ISLAMART. In 2020-21, she rejoined HIAA’s board, serving as President-Elect, and in 2019-22, she served as Chair of the History of Art Department at the University of Michigan.