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Ewa MachotkaAssociate professor, docent

About me

I am a Docent/Associate Professor at the Department of Asian, Middle Eastern and Turkish Studies of the Stockholm University. I am an art historian specializing in Japan and East Asia with a transnational education and career (including Sweden, the Netherlands, Norway; Japan and Poland) in museums and academic institutions. I received my doctoral degree from Gakushuin University, Tokyo thanks to the fellowship from the Japanese Ministry of Education. Formerly I served as Assistant Professor in the Art and Visual Culture of Japan at Leiden University and Curator of Japanese Art at the National Museum in Krakow, Poland. 

  •  Elected member of the Young Academy of Sweden (Sveriges Unga Akademi, since 2019)
  • Member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences's International  Committee (Kungliga Vetenskapsakademien, Kommittén för internationella frågor, since 2020).
  • Member of Academia.Net (Swiss National Science Foundation), a network for excellent female researchers, nominated by the Swedish Research Council (since 2022)
  • Member of the College Art Association's (CAA) International Committee (since 2022)  


  • 2018    Habilitation/Docent, Stockholm University, Sweden
  • 2008    Ph.D., History of Art, Gakushuin University, Tokyo, Japan 
  • 2002    M.A., Japan Studies, Jagiellonian University, Krakow, Poland
  • 1998    M.A., History of Art, Jagiellonian University, Krakow, Poland



since 2017 Associate Professor/Docent (tenured), in Japanese Language and Culture (specialization: Art History), Dept. of Asian, Middle Eastern and Turkish Studies, Stockholm University, Sweden

since 2021  Visiting Researcher, International Joint Digital Archiving Center for Japanese Art and Culture, Ritsumeikan University, Kyoto, Japan


2011 – 2017 Assistant Professor (tenured), Art and Visual Studies of Japan, Leiden Institute for Area Studies, Leiden University, the Netherlands

2011 – 2008 Guest Curator: Museum of Far Eastern Antiquities (Stockholm), Museum of Cultural History (Oslo), Museum of Japanese Art and Technology (Krakow)

2006 – 2008 Research Associate: Museum of Far Eastern Antiquities in Stockholm; Clark Center for Japanese Art and Culture in Hanford, USA

1999 – 2008 Curator (tenured), National Museum in Krakow, Poland


2020 – 2021 Heidelberg University, Ishibashi Foundation Visiting Professorship in Japanese Art History, Institute for East Asian Art History (cancelled due to the Covid-19)

2020 – 2021 Sophia University, Tokyo, Visiting Professor, Hosted by the Institute for Comparative Culture within the Education Innovation Program “What is Globalization: Think Globally, Act Locally” (web-based due to the Covid-19)


My teaching encompasses the following subjects: the arts and visual culture of Japan across genres and periods; early modern print culture and poetry pictorialization; environmental art history; contemporary socially engaged artictic practices; art and gender; art theory, methodologies of art history etc.

  • Director of the MA Asian Studies Programme at our Department.
  • Co-Director of the SU Doctoral School in the Humanities's Theme "Digital Humanities: From Methods to Knowledge".

Courses taught at the Stockholm University (2017-):

Ph.D. level:

• “Digital Humanities: From Method to Knowledge” (co-taught 30%) • “Digital Methods for the Humanities: Space-, Image- and Object” (co-taught 50%) • “Digital Methods for the Humanities: Space-, Image- and Object. Individual study” (co-taught 50 %) • ”World Literatures and the Culture of Texts” ( “Digital Media and Remediation of Texts”)

MA level:

• “Issues and Approaches in East Asian Studies” (seminar) • “Master Classes in East Asian Studies” (seminar) • “Internships in East Asia” (supervision) • “Theory and Method in Japan Studies” (seminar) • “Advanced Japanese” (seminar)  

BA level:

• “Art, Environment and Sustainability in East Asia” (seminar) • “History of Japan before 1868” (seminar) • “Gender and Art in Japan” (seminar) • “Academic Writing II” (seminar) • “Japan Research Seminars” (seminar, co-taught) • “Kanji I A” (lecture course) • “Kanji I B” (lecture course) • “Kanji IV A” (seminar) • “Kanji IV B” (seminar) • Individual sessions contributed to other courses e.g. “Introduction to Japanese Studies”, “Queer Asia” etc.

Courses taught at the Leiden University (2011-2017):

MA level:

• “Image/Text in Pre-modern Japan” (seminar, co-taught 50%) • “Methods: Art and Material Objects” (seminar) • “Theories and Methods of Japanese Studies” (seminar) • “MA Thesis Class in East Asian Art History” (seminar) • “Internship in Japanese Museum” (supervision) • “MA Tutorials and Topical Readings” (seminar) • “MA Thesis Tutorials I” (seminar) • “MA Thesis Tutorials II” (seminar)

BA level:

• “Arts and Media Cluster Text Seminar/Advanced Japanese” (seminar) • “BA Thesis Class in East Asian Art History” (seminar) • “Arts and Media Cluster Seminar” (seminar) • “Arts and Material Culture of Japan” (large lecture course for 150 students) • “Japanese Print Media - Art or/and Visual Culture?” (seminar) • “Gender and Art in Japan” (seminar) • “Art and the City in Japan I” (seminar) • “Art and the City in Japan II” (seminar) • “Artist as Profession in Japan I” (seminar) • “Artist as Profession in Japan II” (seminar) 2.


In my teaching I have supplemented textual and oral teaching with different external events facilitating direct contact with art objects (“hands-on-art”) and creative experiences (painting workshops, exhibitions).

• “Hands-on Art Experience” (9 editions) Conducted in collaboration with Dr. Michle Lee and Petra Holmberg (curators, Museum of Far Eastern Antiquities, Stockholm), Dr. Daan Kok (curator, National Museum of Ethnology, Leiden), Prof. Akama Ryō (Ritsumeikan University), Dr. Chris Uhlenbeck (Hotei Japanese Prints Gallery), Dr. Henk Herwig (private collector) in 2012, 2013, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019.

• “Text & Image in Pre-modern Japan: From Analogue to Digital Humanities”, Joint Workshop between Leiden University and Ritsumeikan University, February 2017.    
• “Inscription Reading Workshop”, March 8-12, 2013, conducted in collaboration with Prof. Akama Ryō (Ritsumeikan University).

• “In Line and Color: Leiden University Students’ Works Exhibition”, East Asian Library”, September 2012-February 2013.

• “Painting Workshop”, September 12-30, 2012: conducted in collaboration with Prof. Saitō Norihiko (Tokyo University of the Arts).


I am an art historian specializing in intercultural and interdisciplinary research on Japanese visual arts. My scholarship focuses on a range of art media and artistic phenomena from the early modern period to the present. I have worked with critical issues relevant for Global Art History, Social and Gender Art History, Japan Studies and the emerging fields of Environmental Humanities and Digital Humanities. I have also engaged with postcolonial theory and the interplay of Orientalism, nationalism and globalization; art historiography and canon formation; collecting histories and exhibition strategies; text-image relationships etc. 



  • Between Absence and Presence:Environmental Disaster in Early Modern Visual Culture of Japan. Stockholm University Press, forthcoming (peer-reviewed monograph). [Open Access] 
  • Hokusai`s Hyakunin isshu: Visual Genesis of Japanese National Identity. Brussels: P.I.E-Peter Lang, 2009. (peer-reviewed monograph)
  • Consuming Life in Post-Bubble Japan: A Transdisciplinary Perspective, co-edited by Ewa Machotka and Katarzyna Cwiertka. Amsterdam University Press, 2018. (peer-reviewed edited volume) [Open Access]
  • Too Pretty to Throw Away: Packaging Design from Japan, by Ewa Machotka and Katarzyna Cwiertka. Krakow: Museum of Japanese Art and Technology, 2016. (book) [Open Access]
Machotka E_Visual Genesis of Japanese National Identity_Cover
Machotka E_Visual Genesis of Japanese National Identity
Machotka § Cwiertka_Consuming Life in Post-Bubble Japan_Cover
Machotka § Cwiertka_Consuming Life in Post-Bubble Japan_Cover












Ca. 40 publications including: papers in peer reviewed journals, invited book chapters, book reviews, conference proceedings; translations, popular science articles and 6 exhibition catalogues. For more information please refer to my CV posted on the right side. 


• The Young Academy of Sweden (member since 2019)

• The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences' International Committee (since 2020)

• Academia.Net (Swiss National Science Foundation) (since 2022)


• Elected member of the College Art Association’s (CAA) Internationalization Committee (since 2023). 

• Convenor of the Visual Arts Section of The European Association for Japanese Studies (EAJS) for the years 2012–2017, Chapter: Europe and Japan

• Editorial Board Member: Mutual Images, Stockholm Studies in Media Arts Japan • Reviewer: East Asian History Journal, Edizioni Ca' Foscari, Mutual Images 


• The European Commission Research Executive Agency, Expert Reviewer and Rapporteur (since 2020)

• The Aarhus Institute for Advanced Studies, Expert Reviewer, Denmark (2021)

• The Heinz Kaempfer Award, Award Committee Member, the Netherlands (since 2021)


Grants & Awards (selection)


2023 – 2024    The Barbro Klein Fellowship 2023-2024,

                        The Swedish Collegium for Advanced Study (SCAS), Uppsala.   

2022 – 2023    Stockholm Environmental Institute

2022 – 2023    Metropolitan Center for Far Eastern Art Studies

2022 – 2024    Magnus Bergvalls Foundation, Stockholm 

2021 – 2023    Åke Wibergs Foundation, Stockholm

2021 – 2022    Board of Human Sciences, Stockholm University

2021 – 2022    Art Research Center, Ritsumeikan University, Kyoto

2020 – 2021    The Royal Swedish Academy of Letters, History and Antiquities

2019 – 2020    Board of Human Sciences, Stockholm University

2018 – 2019    Bolin Center for Climate Research, Stockholm

2013 – 2016    Asia Leiden Center, Leiden

2014 – 2016    DNP Foundation for Cultural Promotion, Tokyo

2013 – 2014    The Asian Modernities and Traditions, Leiden

2009 – 2011   College Women`s Association of Japan, Tokyo

2006 – 2007   Mitsubishi Foundation, Tokyo

2006 – 2007   Metropolitan Center for Far Eastern Art Studies

2006 – 2007   College Women’s Association of Japan, Tokyo

2004 – 2005    Ukiyo-e Ota Memorial Museum of Art, Tokyo

2003 – 2004    Japan Arts Foundation, Tokyo

2001 – 2002    Kyoto Art Center, Kyoto

2001 – 2002    Toshiba International Foundation, Tokyo


2018 – 2019    Riksbankens Jubileumsfond, participation in the 2018 Digital Humanities at Oxford Summer School, Oxford University

2006 – 2006    The Kajima Arts Foundation, participation in the Postgraduate Workshop in Japanese Art History (PWJAH), SOAS, University of London

2002 – 2006    Japanese Ministry of Education, fully-funded Doctoral Fellowship to study at Gakushuin University, Tokyo


2022 – 2023    CIVIS, International Workshop, University of Glasgow

2021 – 2022    Sophia University, Tokyo, (Co-PI), International Conference

2017 – 2018    The Stichting Isaac Alfred Ailion Foundation and The Heinz M. Kaempfer Fund, (PI), International Workshop, Leiden University

2012 – 2014    The Cannon Foundation in Europe, Organization of the “JAPA-Leiden University Artist in Residence Programme” 




Research projects