Jonathan Farris

Johnathan Farris

Art history professor


  • B.A., Yale University, 1993
  • M.A., University of Virginia, 1995
  • Ph.D., Cornell University, 2004

Awards, recognitions and honors

Scott Opler Emerging Scholar Fellowship, Society of Architectural Historians, 2009; Robert D. MacDougall Memorial Scholarship, Cornell University, 2004; A. Henry Detweiler Fund Research Grant, Cornell University, 2003; Lam Family Foundation Travel Grant for Research on South China, 2003; Lam Family Foundation Travel Grant for Research on South China, 2002; Cornell University International Studies in Planning Grant, 2002; A. Henry Detweiler Fund Research Travel Grant, Summer 2002; Graduate Student Transportation Grant, 2001; Vernacular Architecture Forum Student Fellowship Funding, 2001; Distinction in the History of Art Major, Yale University, 1993; A. Conger Goodyear Fine Arts Award, Yale University, 1993; Richter Summer Fellowship Grant, Yale University, 1992


  • Association for Asian Studies
  • Society of Architectural Historians
  • Vernacular Architecture Forum

Publications and Presentations

Articles and Essays:

  • Chapter, "Dwelling Factors: Western Merchants in Canton," in Carole Shammas, ed. Investing in the Early Modern Built Environment: Europeans, Asians, Settlers and Indigenous Societies, 2012
  • Chapter, "Treaty Ports of China and the West's Architectural Presence," in Carola Hein, ed. Port Cities: Dynamic Landscapes and Global Networks, 2011
  • Article, "Thirteen Factories of Canton: An Architecture of Sino-Western Collaboration and Confrontation," in Buildings and Landscapes: Journal of the Vernacular Architecture Forum, Vol. 14, 2007.


  • "Enclave to Urbanity: Canton, Foreigners, and Architecture from the Late Eighteenth to the Early Twentieth Centuries," Hong Kong University Press, 2016.


  • "Examining the Chinese City," on three recent texts on Chinese art, architectural, and urban history for Journal of Urban History, 2012
  • Review on Sherman Cochran and David Strand, eds. Cities in Motion: Interior, Coast, and Diaspora in Transnational China in Planning Perspectives, Vol. 26, No. 3, July 2011
  • Review on Duanfang Lu, Remaking Chinese Urban Form: Modernity, Scarcity, and Space, 1949-2005 in Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians, March 2008
  • Review on Peter Rowe and Seng Kuan, Architectural Encounters With Essence and Form in Modern China and Rowe and Kuan, eds. Shanghai: Architecture & Urbanism for Modern China in Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians, June 2006
  • Review on Marilyn Casto, Actors, Audiences, and Historic Theaters of Kentucky, in Vernacular Architecture Newsletter, Summer 2001
  • Review on Kai Yin Lo, Living Heritage: Vernacular Environment in China, in Vernacular Architecture Newsletter, Winter 2001

Invited Presentations:

  • "Cultivation of Modernity in Chinese Architecture and Urbanism, Prelude and 1911-1929" for Adaptation and Invention: A Century of Chinese Architecture 1911-2011 lecture series of Chinese University of Hong Kong and ZUNI Icosahedron, November 5, 2011
  • "The Thirteen Factories of Canton: A Provisional Presence," for Permanence and the Built Environment in the Pacific Basin Conference at USC-Huntington Early Modern Studies Institute, April 17-18, 2009
  • "China's Treaty Ports: Dynamics of Global and Local in the West's Architectural Presence," for Workshop and Conference on Global Port Cities and Networking at Bryn Mawr College, November 16-17, 2008
  • "Dwelling on the Edge of Empires: Foreigners, Architecture, and Canton, China," Annual Linda Memorial Lecture on Asian Art, Palmer Art Museum, Pennsylvania State University, March 7, 2007
  • "Identifying Rural Historic Districts" at Auburn University Transportation Conference (Department of Engineering) in Montgomery, Alabama, February 11, 1999
  • "Fiske Kimball and Stratford Hall" at U. Va. Fiske Kimball Library 25th Anniversary Symposium, November 19, 1995