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Ivan Knapp


My research focuses on questions of subjectivity at intersections of lens-based and digital media, sculpture, and politics in modern and contemporary art. I was awarded a PhD in the History of Art by University College London in 2021 for my thesis Meme-work: Psychoanalysis and the alt-right which explored memes and other visual phenomena associated with the online ‘alt-right’ movement through psychoanalytic theories of dreams, the group, and male hysteria. I am currently finalizing essays related to my doctoral work, on Mary Kelly’s 1992 installation Gloria Patri and Silvia Kolbowski’s 2018 video That Monster: An Allegory, for publication. My post-doctoral research is toward a monograph on the work of the contemporary American sculptor Rachel Harrison.

Research interests

Modern and contemporary art; politics; psychoanalysis; sculpture; lens-based and digital media; masculinities; internet and post-internet art and visual culture
Teaching and supervision
Modules taught include:

  • Art and Disruption 1900-today
  • Photography
  • Sculpture
  • Contemporary Art

MA (University of Edinburgh)

MA (Courtauld Institute of Art)

PhD (University College London)

    Selected publications

    • Knapp, I., ‘That Monster Over There’, in Cases of Citations: On Literature in Art, ed. by Chloe Julius and Michael Green, Manchester: Manchester: University Press (forthcoming, 2023).

    • Knapp, I., ‘On Meme-work’, October, vol. 183, Winter 2023, pp. 3-16.

    • Knapp, I., ‘Genes, Memes, Dreams’, in INC Reader #15 – Critical Meme Reader, Global Mutations of the Viral Image, ed. by Chloë Arkenbout, Jack Wilson and Daniel de Zeeuw, Amsterdam: Institute of Network Cultures (2021), pp. 330-337.

    • Knapp, I., ‘A betamale is being beaten’, Object, 21 (2020), pp. 51-69. <>