(on leave as Interim Associate Dean of Graduate Studies in 2016-17)
Doctor of Philosophy, University of California Los Angeles, CA
Beverly K. Grindstaff is professor of design history at San José State University. Her areas of specialization are critical theory and nineteenth- and twentieth-century art and design. Themes unifying her work include formal theories of aesthetics and the construction of identity through the fine arts, design, popular culture, and the museum. Her research interests are represented by "Designing the Mensch als Kunstwerk: Kant, Hygiene and the Aesthetics of Health in Wilhelmine Germany" (UCLA dissertation, 2004), which examines the early Deutscher Werkbund through the popular and political understanding of the healthy body, pace Kant, as the "visible expression of moral ideas that govern man ideally." Recent publications include "The Origins of Unsustainable Luxury: Becoming 'Slaves to Objects'", in "Design Philosophy Papers 3" (2009), and "Making the Great Outdoors Better: The Outdoor Kitchen and the Changing Design of American Luxury", in the IDEA Journal 2009 special issue, Interior Territories: Exposing the Critical Interior. Current projects focus on mid-century interior and industrial designers and American "dream houses" of the credit-rich early 21st-century.