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CAA Wraps Its 98th Annual Conference in Chicago

posted by Nia Page — Feb 24, 2010

The College Art Association (CAA) hosted its 98th Annual Conference in Chicago, February 10–13, 2010, at the Hyatt Regency Chicago. The program included three days of presentations and panel discussions on art history and visual culture; career-development workshops, mentoring programs, and job interviews with colleges and universities; a Book and Trade Fair of academic and trade art publishers and artist-materials distributors; and a host of special events throughout the Chicago area.

Here are some conference highlights.


More than 4,000 art professionals from throughout the United States and abroad—including art historians, visual artists, students, educators, curators, critics, collectors, and museum staff—were in attendance.


Conference sessions featured presentations from art-history scholars, graduate students, artists, and curators from institutions across the country and internationally. Conference sessions address a range of topics in art history and the visual arts. In total, over 150 sessions, developed by CAA members, affiliated societies, and committees, were offered.

Career Services

Career Services included three days of mentoring and portfolio-review sessions, career-development workshops, and job interviews. Approximately 185 (mentoring only) interviewees and 26 (mentoring only) interviewers were on hand to participate in Career Services.

Book and Trade Fair

This year’s Book and Trade Fair presented 135 exhibitors, including participants from the United States, Mexico, Turkey, England, Belgium, Scotland, and the Netherlands, displaying new publications, artists’ materials, digital resources, and innovative products of interest to artists and scholars. The Book and Trade Fair also featured book signings, lectures, and art-materials demonstrations, as well as three exhibitor-sponsored program sessions on art materials and publishing.

ARTspace and ARTexchange

ARTspace, a “conference within the conference” tailored to the needs and interests of practicing artists, presented this year’s Annual Artists’ Interviews: Tony Tasset was interviewed by John Neff, and Phyllis Bramson was interviewed by Lynn Warren. Over 150 people attended this extraordinary event. Programmed by CAA’s Services to Artists Committee, ARTspace was made possible in part by a generous grant from the National Endowment for the Arts.

ARTexchange, an open-portfolio event where CAA artist members displayed drawings, prints, photographs, small paintings, and works on laptop computers. Fifty-two artists participated in ARTexchange this year.

Convocation and Awards for Distinction

More than 600 people attended CAA’s Convocation and Presentation of the 2010 Awards for Distinction. The keynote address was delivered by the renowned photographer Dawoud Bey.

Recipients of CAA’s awards are as follows:

  • Distinguished Artist Award for Lifetime Achievement: Suzanne Lacy
  • Artist Award for Distinguished Body of Work: Emory Douglas and Barkley L. Hendricks
  • Distinguished Lifetime Achievement Award for Writing on Art: Holland Cotter
  • Frank Jewett Mather Award: Terry Smith
  • Distinguished Feminist Award: Griselda Pollock
  • Distinguished Teaching of Art Award: Dean Nimmer
  • Distinguished Teaching of Art History Award: Richard Shiff
  • Charles Rufus Morey Book Award: Cammy Brothers, Michelangelo, Drawing, and the Invention of Architecture
  • Alfred H. Barr, Jr., Award: Debra Diamond, Catherine Glynn, and Karni Singh Jasol, Gardens and Cosmos: The Royal Paintings of Jodhpur
  • Arthur Kingsley Porter Prize: Michael Schreffler, “‘Their Cortés and Our Cortés’: Spanish Colonialism and Aztec Representation”
  • Art Journal Award: Joanna Grabski, “Urban Claims and Visual Sources in the Making of Dakar’s Art World City”
  • CAA/Heritage Preservation Award for Distinction in Scholarship and Conservation: David Bomford

CAA’s well-attended Gala Reception was held at the Art Institute of Chicago’s newly inaugurated Modern Wing. Designed by Pritzker Prize–winning architect Renzo Piano, this stunning space served as the kick-off venue for the conference.

Special Events

CAA’s Annual Exhibition, Picturing the Studio, was presented at the new Sullivan Galleries of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.

Sold-out tours explored the riches of Chicago’s arts and architecture, from Frank Lloyd Wright to the city’s historic skyscrapers.

Save the Date

CAA’s Centennial Celebration and 99th Annual Conference will be held in New York City from February 9 to 12, 2011.

About CAA

The College Art Association is dedicated to providing professional services and resources for artists, art historians, and students in the visual arts. CAA serves as an advocate and a resource for individuals and institutions nationally and internationally by offering forums to discuss the latest developments in the visual arts and art history through its Annual Conference, publications, exhibitions, website, and other events. CAA focuses on a wide range of issues including education in the arts, freedom of expression, intellectual-property rights, cultural heritage, preservation, workforce topics in universities and museums, and access to networked information technologies. Representing its members’ professional needs since 1911, CAA is committed to the highest professional and ethical standards of scholarship, creativity, criticism, and teaching.