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Recent Deaths in the Arts

posted by Christopher Howard — Dec 18, 2008

CAA recognizes the lifetime professional and personal achievements of the following artists, art historians, curators, educators, and critics, who recently passed away.

  • George Brecht, an artist who was a principle member of Fluxus, died on December 5, 2008, at age 82 in Cologne, Germany, where he had been living
  • Mildred Constantine Bettelheim, a former curator of design at the Museum of Modern Art in New York and a CAA member since 1938, died on December 10, 2008. at her home in Nyack, NY. She was 95. A special obituary from Linda Downs, CAA executive director, has been published
  • Derek Davis, a self-taught British ceramicist and painter, died on September 3, 2008, at age 82
  • Lawrence Fane, an expressionist sculptor who worked with steel, bronze, wood, and concrete, died on November 28, 2008, in New York at age 75
  • François-Xavier Lalanne, a French artists who created surrealistic animal sculptures in bronze that doubled as functional objects, and who was also well known in the fashion world, died on December 7, 2008, at his home in the village of Ury, south of Paris. He was 81
  • William H. Pierson Jr., a member of the “art mafia” at Williams College who, with Whitney S. Stoddard and S. Lane Faison, Jr., helped to shape a generation of museum curators and directors, died on December 3, 2008, in North Adams, Massachusetts. He was 97 and resided in Williamstown
  • Warren M. Robbins, founder of the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of African Art, died on December 4, 2008, in Washington, DC. He was 85
  • Kathleen Michelle Robinson, an art historian of nineteenth-century art and a curator at the Figge Art Museum in Davenport, Iowa, died on November 16, 2008, in Leavenworth, Kansas. She was 57
  • Willoughby Sharp, an artist, curator, teacher, and publisher of Avalanche magazine, died on December 17, 2008, in New York. He was 72
  • Terry Toedtemeier, a photographer, professor, geologist, and curator of photography at the Portland Art Museum in Oregon, died on December 10, 2008, at the age of 61
  • Jorn Utzon, an architect who designed the Sydney Opera House in Australia, died in Copenhagen, Denmark, on November 29, 2008, at the age of 90
  • Cornelius C. Vermeule III, a curator of classical antiquities at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, for over four decades, died on November 27, 2008, in Cambridge, Massachusetts. He was 83

Read all past obituaries in the arts on the CAA website.

Filed under: Obituaries, People in the News