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E. C. Schmidt
Associate Professor

A scholar-practitioner- Mimi, received her Ph. D. from the University of Oxford. Her work focuses on traditional design and the re-vitalization of historic houses, especially on the role and encounter of objects and interiors in identity-formation and design processes. Passionate about historic houses she has lived in unusual houses from a Baroque palace, a monastery in Jerusalem, the house ofthe 17th century astronomer Edmund Halley, the painter Gustav Klimt’s magical lake-side villa and a hen house. Her curiosity to look behind closed doors in unusual houses gets her into trouble at times. Once she opened a closed door only to find herself on stage as the next candidate for an audition with the conductor Zubin Mehta.

Awards:Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art award for contributions to the field of European decorative arts, Memorial Foundation for Jewish Culture award, New York, German Merit Foundation scholarship/Studienstiftung des deutschenVolkes,DAAD scholarship and the Ian Karten Award, John Lowell Osgood dissertation Prize.

Teaching:Mimi has lectured worldwide including Columbia University, Harvard University, the Max-Planck-Institute, the Leo Baeck Institute in Jerusalem, the Museum for Applied Art in Vienna, the Technical University in Vienna, King’s College London and the Institute for Advanced Study, London University.She was Prize Lecturer at the Institute for Advanced Study, London University.

Ph. D. from the University of Oxford (Michal Wills Scholar& tutor).
M.St. University of Oxford
MA, University of Vienna & participated in the Final Honour School, University of Oxford

Teaching and Research Interests

History of interior design and the role of women in the professionalization of the discipline, history of collecting, global design history, historic houses, heritage studies, History of Collecting, European and Asian decorative arts, Cultural transfer between East and West, aesthetic theory, animal studies & art history (history of menageries and art in India)


Publications (selected)

Dr. Schmidt has published articles in acacemic journals, newspapers and magazines. Her forthcoming paper is entitled: “Sommerfrische, Connoisseurship, Scandal and the Temporary in the Jewish Country House in Austria”


Research Projects / Curations / Exhibitions (selected)

Art collectors and their houses at the turn of the century, Memorial Foundation for Jewish Culture, New York