Barbara Lynn-Davis

Lecturer in Art

Research focuses on art and historical imagination.

My pleasure is using the beauty and meanings of Italian art, literature, and gardens as jumping off points for writing.

My passion for art and writing includes historical fiction. I am the author of a novel set in eighteenth-century Venice, Casanova’s Secret Wife (Kensington Publishing, 2017). The story is based on an actual account by Giacomo Casanova, the world's most infamous chronicler of seduction: but I tell it from the woman's point of view. I am currently at work on Searching for Raphael. The novel is based on the true story of a painting by the Renaissance artist that was stolen from the Czartoryski Collection in Poland by the Nazis, and never found.

At Wellesley, I have been able to unite these two intellectual threads—art, and writing—to bring out the best in students’ ideas. I am most proud that many of my students have won the college-wide Three Generations Prize for First-Year Writing.


  • B.A., Brown University
  • M.A., Williams College
  • Ph.D., Princeton University