August 14, 2009 Library of Congress Announces Recipients of Kislak Fellowships in American Studies at the John W. Kluge Center

Press Contact: Donna Urschel (202) 707-1639
Public Contact: Robert Saladini (202) 707-2692

The Library of Congress announces Luisa Elena Alcala and Jennifer Loughmiller-Newman as Short-Term Kislak Fellows at the Library’s John W. Kluge Center, where they will research cultures and history of the Americas.

The fellowships—four months in length—will start in September for Loughmiller-Newman, an anthropologist at the New York State Museum in Albany, and in February, 2010, for Alcala, an associate professor of art history at New York University in Madrid, Spain.

Loughmiller-Newman will study Mayan ceramics and the chemical and physical analysis of residues and decomposition. Alcala will research a project titled “Art Taming the Landscape: Creating a Sense of Place in Colonial Spanish-American Images.”

The Short-Term Kislak Fellowship in American Studies is part of an endowment of the Jay I. Kislak Collection, an important repository of books, manuscripts, historic documents, maps and art of the Americas that was donated to the Library of Congress in 2004 by the Jay I. Kislak Foundation of Miami Lakes, Fla. The collection contains some of the earliest records of indigenous peoples in North America. It also includes superb objects from the discovery, contact and colonial periods, especially for the areas of Florida, the Caribbean and Mesoamerica.

The purpose of the fellowship is to advance research in the culture and history of the Americas, using materials in the Kislak Collection as a starting point and as context for that research.

Loughmiller-Newman, who works on the Cultural Resources Survey Project at New York State Museum, received a master’s degree in anthropology from the University of Albany. She is a Ph.D. candidate in Mesoamerican archaeology at the same school. Alcala received a bachelor’s degree in art history from Yale University and a Ph.D. in art history from the Institute of Fine Arts at New York University.

Through a generous endowment from John W. Kluge, the Library of Congress established the Kluge Center in 2000 to bring together the world’s best thinkers to stimulate and energize one another to distill wisdom from the Library’s rich resources and to interact with policymakers in Washington. For further information on the Kluge Center, visit


PR 09-155
ISSN 0731-3527