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Distinguished Lifetime Achievement Award for Writing on Art

The Distinguished Lifetime Achievement Award for Writing on Art, established in 2003, celebrates the career of an author of note and includes art criticism, art history, art biography, and/or art theory. The award is presented to an author who, among other distinctions, has demonstrated particular commitment to his or her work throughout a long career and has had an impact, nationally and internationally, on the field.

2015 Winner

Lucy R. Lippard: Down Country

Lucy R. Lippard

As a curator, teacher, activist, and most of all, as a writer, Lucy Lippard has been deeply engaged with art and other cultural issues for more than fifty years. Beginning with conceptual art, her writing has brought into view numerous artists, artworks, and practices that might otherwise have remained obscured by the limits of the canon. Her beliefs in the transformative potential of art and understanding of the conditions of artistic work have driven her path-breaking writing from the start. Her proximity to artists and activist commitment have contributed to a firm but adaptable critical identity. She has been a key figure in numerous organizations that have supported artistic and political speech, from the Art Workers Coalition to Heresies and Printed Matter. Her books are a unique resource. The range of her writing is breathtaking. She is a realist and a dreamer. Frank and poetic, fearlessly opinionated and disarmingly personal, her lucid, accessible prose has addressed gender, labor, war, materiality, prehistory, and the contemporary, multiculturalism, the local and the global. She offers a powerful model of integrated scholarship and activism, inviting readers into an encounter with visual art and art criticism embedded in a rich landscape of adventurous, artistic, and political creativity.

Jury: Michael Brenson, independent scholar, chair; Ellen T. Birrell, California Institute of the Arts; and Rebecca Zorach, University of Chicago.

Past Winners

Although the Distinguished Lifetime Achievement Award for Writing on Art was established fairly recently, the award juries have honored the writing careers of notable luminaries in the field, including Hans Belting, Oleg Grabar, Georges Didi-Huberman, and, most recently, John Berger.

Read a list of all winners of the Distinguished Lifetime Achievement Award for Writing on Art from 2003 to the present.

Award Nominations

CAA has begun accepting nominations for the 2016 awards. Please review the guidelines to familiarize yourself with the nomination process and to download, complete, and submit the requested materials. Deadline: July 31, 2015, for the Charles Rufus Morey Book Award, the Alfred H. Barr Jr. Awards, and the Frank Jewett Mather Award; August 31, 2015, for all others.

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