I am an archaeologist of ancient Mesoamerican civilizations. From 2014-2021, I served as the Assistant Curator for the Art of the Ancient Americas at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. In the past, I held an appointment as a Post-Doctoral Associate in Pre-Columbian Studies at Harvard University’s Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection. I have taught a variety of courses, including the spring 2014 seminar, Environmental History of Pre-Columbian Latin America, in the Science, Technology, and International Affairs program in the Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University. In the fall of 2013, I taught a seminar on Pre-Columbian Art and Architecture in the Department of Art and Art History.

I earned my Ph.D.  in the Department of Anthropology at Brown University and am originally from Memphis, TN. I received my M.A. in anthropology from Brown University and my B.A. in anthropology from Vanderbilt University. My research focuses on the archaeology of Mesoamerica, specifically monumental architecture and art during the Preclassic Maya period (ca. 1000 BC – AD 250).

My field project from 2008-2012 at the site of El Palmar, Petén, Guatemala, was funded by the National Science Foundation and the Wenner-Gren Foundation, with practical support provided by the Casa Herrera of the Mesoamerica Center, University of Texas at Austin.

Contact me.


  1. JAMES! how can i contact you via email?

  2. Dear James
    This is Jorge Estevez (Taino) Ex Employee of the National Museum of the American Indian. Im writing to congratulate you on the exhibit. My niece went to see it and said she loved it. I have not been into the city in a minute but hope to come by soon.
    At the NMAI I worked with an Intern, Gisselle Jimenez who is fantastic, She informed me that she has applied for an internship with you at the MET. I thought I would put in a good word on her behalf, Im sure all your applicants are great, but I can wholeheartedly vouch for Gisselle.
    Thanks for your time brother

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