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Edited by Susan Ball, executive director emerita, The Eye, the Hand, the Mind: 100 Years of the College Art Association surveys the impressive history of the organization from 1911 to the present. The 330-page hardcover book, published jointly by CAA and Rutgers University Press, can be ordered now ($29.95); it will also be available at the upcoming Annual Conference in New York—just in time for CAA’s Centennial Kickoff.

CAA was founded with a single stated purpose: “to promote art interests in all divisions of American colleges and universities.” From this humble yet ambitious origin, Ball has organized her book thematically instead of chronologically, with sixteen “purposes” from the CAA By-laws that are covered in twelve chapters. Written by artists and scholars who have worked closely with the organization over the last few decades, The Eye, the Hand, the Mind offers not a comprehensive history but rather a presentation of memorable highlights that tells the complex, contentious story of a venerable organization.

The Eye, the Hand, the Mind reviews familiar aspects of CAA. Craig Houser negotiates the long history of CAA’s dynamic publications program, which began in 1913 with the first issue of The Art Bulletin, and Julia A. Sienkewicz chronicles the evolution of the celebrated Annual Conference. Less known is CAA’s traveling-exhibition program in the 1930s, uncovered by Cristin Tierney. More recently, Ellen K. Levy explores how CAA has similarly supported presentations of artwork by its members, both students and professionals. Other authors investigate myriad other topics: developments in pedagogy and curriculum; political involvements and advocacy work; visual resources, libraries, and issues of copyright; professional support and career development; partnerships with museums and their associations; relationships to other learned societies in the humanities; governance structure and diversity matters; and much more. In the conclusion, Paul B. Jaskot anticipates the future of the organization as it enters its next one hundred years.

Ball, who served as CAA executive director from 1986 to 2006, is now director of programs at the New York Foundation for the Arts. In addition to organizing the book project, she wrote the introduction and contributed a chapter on the founding of CAA, administrative and financial matters, and the organization’s larger role in the visual arts.

The renowned artist Faith Ringgold has generously allowed the use of her lithograph, The Sunflower Quilting Bee at Arles (1996), for the book’s cover. She created the work, published by the Rutgers Center for Innovative Print and Paper (now the Brodsky Center for Innovative Editions), as a benefit print to support CAA’s Professional Development Fellowship Program. Ringgold will be honored this year with CAA’s Distinguished Feminist Award.

Events at the Annual Conference

At the Annual Conference, CAA and Rutgers University Press are planning several events to promote The Eye, the Hand, the Mind. Judith K. Brodsky will operate a table outside Convocation, to be held at the Hilton New York on Wednesday evening, February 9, 2011, in the East Ballroom, Third Floor. Book signings with many of the contributors will take place in CAA’s Book and Trade Fair, also at the Hilton, on Thursday and Friday afternoons, February 10–11. Please check back later this month for more details on these events and more.

Table of Contents

Below is a list of the fifteen authors and their chapter titles:

  • Susan Ball, “Introduction”
  • Steven C. Wheatley, “The Learned Society Enterprise”
  • Susan Ball, “The Beginnings: “Art for higher education, and higher education for Artists”
  • Cristin Tierney, “A Stimulating Prospect: CAA’s Traveling Exhibition Program, 1929–1937”
  • Barry Pritzker, “Cooperative Relationships with Museums”
  • Craig Houser, “The Changing Face of Scholarly Publishing: CAA’s Publications Program”
  • Julia A. Sienkewicz, “United the Arts and the Academy: A History of the CAA Annual Conference”
  • Ofelia Garcia, “Mentoring the Profession: Career Development and Support”
  • Ellen K. Levy, “Art in an Academic Setting: Contemporary CAA Exhibitions”
  • Matthew Israel, “CAA, Pedagogy, and Curriculum: A Historical Effect, An Unparalleled Wealth of Ideas”
  • Christine L. Sundt, “Visual Resources for the Arts”
  • Judith K. Brodsky, Mary D. Garrard, and Ferris Olin, “Governance and Diversity”
  • Karen J. Leader, “CAA Advocacy: The Nexus of Art and Politics”
  • Paul B. Jaskot, “Conclusion: The Next 100 Years”

The book also includes four appendices that list CAA’s sixteen purposes, past presidents of the Board of Directors, volunteer and staff administrators, and the editors from the publications program.

CAA has announced the recipients of the 2011 Awards for Distinction, which honor the outstanding achievements and accomplishments of individual artists, art historians, authors, conservators, curators, and critics whose efforts transcend their individual disciplines and contribute to the profession as a whole and to the world at large.

CAA will formally recognize the honorees at a special ceremony to be held during the 99th Annual Conference in New York, on Thursday evening, February 10, 2011, 6:00–7:30 PM, at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Led by Barbara Nesin, president of the CAA Board of Directors, the ceremony will take place in the Grace Rainey Rogers Auditorium (use the 83rd Street entrance) and precede the Centennial Reception in the museum’s Great Hall and Temple of Dendur (7:30–9:00 PM). In connection with CAA’s one-hundredth anniversary, past recipients of each award will introduce the winners of the same award, bringing past and present together. The awards ceremony is free and open to the public; tickets for the reception are $35. RSVP to the event on Facebook.

In addition, Nesin, will formally introduce the five recipients of CAA’s 2010–11 Professional-Development Fellowships in the Visual Arts: Alma Leiva, Sheryl Oring, Brittany Ransom, Mina T. Son, and Amanda Valdez. This fellowship program awards grants to outstanding MFA students who are nearing graduation. She will also has also recognized five additional artists who have received honorable mentions: Maria Antelman, Caetlynn Booth, Gregory Hayes, Ashley Lyon, and Georgia Wall.

The 2011 Annual Conference—presenting scholarly sessions, panel discussions, career-development workshops, art exhibitions, a Book and Trade Fair, and more—is the largest gathering of artists, art historians, students, and arts professionals in the United States.

Distinguished Artist Award for Lifetime Achievement
Lynda Benglis

For more than forty years, Lynda Benglis has challenged prevailing views about the nature and function of art, producing sculpture, painting, video, photography, and installation that demonstrate extraordinary breadth and invention. She models the life of an artist lived according to the rhythm of her own creativity and curiosity, rather than to the beat of fashion or the market and its enormous but inconstant rewards. Benglis’s career inspires younger artists, not because she was a star as a young artist, or because she has now begun to be recognized as a major artist at a later date. Her work has been and continues to be an ever-shifting monument to the body in motion, as she herself continues to change and grow as an artist. Her retrospective exhibition, Lynda Benglis, opens at the New Museum of Contemporary Art in New York on February 9.

Artist Award for Distinguished Body of Work
John Baldessari

Few artists of the postwar era are so influential—or so elusive of definition—as John Baldessari, who has made extraordinary contributions in such wide-ranging registers as Conceptualism, appropriation, and art education. This seeming paradox—in which the artist at once towers over contemporary art and often slips through its cracks (while also prompting his students to seek new alternatives)—no doubt arises, at least in part, from his subtle wit. This year’s retrospective exhibition, John Baldessari: Pure Beauty, which opened at Tate Modern in London, appeared at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, and ends its tour at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York (on January 9), firmly establishes his preeminence over the course of five decades of artistic production.

Distinguished Lifetime Achievement Award for Writing on Art
Mieke Bal

The protean career of Mieke Bal, Royal Academy of Arts and Sciences Professor at the University of Amsterdam, has traversed many fields in the humanities. Emerging as a brilliant biblical scholar with path-breaking books that explored the gendered nature of Old Testament narratives, Bal became a star in literary criticism with the English translation of her 1977 book Narratology (1985). Ever curious and creative, her interests then migrated to art history, where she rapidly challenged established methodological conventions with Reading Rembrandt: Beyond the Word Image Opposition (1991) and Quoting Caravaggio: Contemporary Art, Preposterous History (1999)—not to mention her well-known essay “Semiotics and Art History,” coauthored with Norman Bryson and published in The Art Bulletin (1991). Applying philosophical principles to an enterprise too often obsessed with empirical “evidence,” Bal provocatively rethinks the status of artistic authorship, the nature of the text/image relationship, the structure of text/context relationships, and the character of historical time.

Frank Jewett Mather Award
Luis Camnitzer

Luis Camnitzer has translated his tricultural perspective—born in Germany, raised and educated in Uruguay, and a participant in the New York art world—into a tripled practice. As an artist, teacher, and critic, he has lucidly addressed the aesthetic, social, and political conundrums of our times with firm but low-key authority. His latest collection of writings, On Art, Artists, Latin America, and Other Utopias (Austin: University of Texas Press, 2009), speaks incisively to issues of cultural displacement, transnational aesthetics, and the peripheral condition of contemporary art. Written originally for international art journals, exhibition catalogues, and academic conferences, the essays, which date from 1969 to 2007, assume a universal address, and Camnitzer’s intricate perception, laced with humor and irony but not dependent on them, allows him reasoned closeness to, and passionate distance from, his myriad topics.

Distinguished Feminist Award
Faith Ringgold

Faith Ringgold has been a forceful voice for feminism, successfully and gracefully encapsulating crucial issues of race despite the often-contentious relationship between gender and race in enfranchisement movements over the last four decades. Her work not only captures the strength of black women in fighting slavery, oppression, and sexual exploitation, but it also chronicles the dreams of black women who sought to transcend circumstance and find a brighter future. Ringgold’s American People paintings (1963–67) and Black Light series (begun in 1967) sought to examine how traditional color values could be modified for black subjects. From there she explored traditions of “women’s work” in fabric, first in collaboration with her late mother and then in her Story Quilts, which have become her signature statement. As a committed activist, Ringgold was a founder of Women, Students, and Artists for Black Liberation and a cofounder and member of Where We At, a collaborative of black women artists in the 1970s and 1980s.

Distinguished Teaching of Art Award
William Itter

William Itter’s gifted teaching approach, dedication to the instruction of freshman students, and curricular innovations in foundations have had a momentous, immeasurable impact on art pedagogy for more than fifty years. During his tenure as director of the Fundamentals Studio Program at Indiana University in Bloomington, which he joined in 1969, Itter has mentored several generations of graduate students with insight and commitment, turning them into great artists and teachers from a time when the MFA degree was in its infancy to the present day. In a unique pedagogical approach, he has regularly and generously shared his museum-quality collection of ceramics, textiles, baskets, and sculpture with his students as pedagogical tools to help them understand how visual languages have manifested across cultures and times. Now professor emeritus of fine arts, Itter continues to exhibit his own painting and drawing in prestigious venues nationwide.

Distinguished Teaching of Art History Award
Patricia Hills

An active, gifted teacher, faithful mentor, and valued colleague, Patricia Hills has maintained a prodigious career, producing scholarship that has profoundly shaped the history of American art and visual culture. Her textbook Modern Art in the USA: Issues and Controversies of the Twentieth Century (2001) has become standard reading in the field, and her work on Jacob Lawrence, Alice Neel, Stuart Davis, John Singer Sargent, and Eastman Johnson is highly esteemed. As professor of art history at Boston University, she is a creative, active, and engaged classroom leader who has developed an innovative style of teaching that emphasizes intellectual role-playing and demonstrates striking methodological openness. Hills’s admirable commitment to the time-demanding aspects of pedagogy, such as her rigorous attention to student writing and her ability to combine that investment with a remarkable publication record, are a model for students and teachers across the discipline.

Charles Rufus Morey Book Award
Molly Emma Aitken

Informed by history, connoisseurship, and contemporary artistic practice, Molly Emma Aitken’s The Intelligence of Tradition in Rajput Court Painting (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2010) is an original contribution to the history of South Asian art. Aitken’s closely argued yet accessible account overturns long-held assumptions regarding the conservatism of Rajasthani miniatures, revealing the subtle yet powerful dynamism that animates this tradition. She acknowledges that the “enormous red-tipped eyes, narrow skulls, and squat or strangely arching bodies” of the figures depicted in these works can seem formulaic or alienating, but these images cannot be understood as mere repetitions of moribund conventions. Instead, Aitken shows that these court paintings were intended to elicit emotional states from the viewer, a conclusion she reaches through an innovative application of formal analysis and social history.

CAA announced the shortlist on December 15, 2010.

Alfred H. Barr, Jr., Award
Darielle Mason, ed.

Darielle Mason’s Kantha: The Embroidered Quilts of Bengal from the Jill and Sheldon Bonovitz Collection and the Stella Kramrisch Collection of the Philadelphia Museum of Art (Philadelphia: Philadelphia Museum of Art, 2009) constitutes a model of how to make a catalogue about specific collections that far outreaches the task of honoring the collectors in question. Offering acute insights into an important region and an understudied medium, the book not only celebrates a lively vernacular textile tradition but also accords, for the first time, a comprehensive, sensitive treatment to this form of women’s domestic, creative, and social expression. In a series of richly grounded, engagingly written essays, Mason and her collaborators—Pika Ghosh, Katherine Hacker, Anne Peranteau, and Niaz Zaman—locate Kantha in wider sociocultural, historical, political, economic, and religious currents while tackling issues sometimes avoided in such studies, such as matters surrounding the quiltmakers’ agency.

CAA announced the shortlist on December 15, 2010.

Alfred H. Barr, Jr., Award for Smaller Museums, Libraries, and Collections
Yasufumi Nakamori

Yasufumi Nakamori’s Katsura: Picturing Modernism in Japanese Architecture; Photographs by Ishimoto Yasuhiro (Houston: Museum of Fine Arts, 2010) revisits a book of photographs of an elegant imperial villa in Kyoto, a seventeenth-century structure that interestingly foreshadows Western modernist design. While this errand may sound obscurantist to some, the author has a profoundly fascinating story to tell. It emerges that the architect Tange Kenzō (with Walter Gropius, who authored the original Herbert Bayer–designed book from 1960) extensively altered the vision of Ishimoto, a fledgling photographer, by drastically cropping the images to better align them with Bauhaus aesthetics, and to reinforce his own position in postwar Japanese debates on the relation of the modern to tradition. In this astutely, impeccably produced catalogue, Nakamori importantly rehabilitates Ishimoto’s initial vision of Katsura, reproducing his original, perfectly stunning photographs.

Arthur Kingsley Porter Prize
Ross Barrett

In “Rioting Refigured: George Henry Hall and the Picturing of American Political Violence,” published in the September 2010 issue of The Art Bulletin, Ross Barrett recovers the history of the artist and a landmark painting of an American laborer. Rooting his analysis in close observation, the author enlivens a work that could easily be dismissed as little more than an academic study of a male model. Calling attention to the title Hall gave his 1858 painting (The Dead Rabbit, a term New Yorkers applied to a street rowdy), to bruises on the man’s torso, and to the brick clutched in his right hand, Barrett identifies the figure as a working class, Irish immigrant. Barrett calls on an arsenal of resources—history, biography, iconography, pedagogical practices in the academy, reports and illustrations in the popular press, theories of the body and spectatorship, and ancillary images of the male athlete in mid-nineteenth-century America—to build a clear and convincing case for reading class conflict and civil disorder in this material body.

Art Journal Award
Kirsten Swenson, Janet Kraynak, Paul Monty Paret, and Emily Eliza Scott

Organized by Kirsten Swenson for the forthcoming Winter 2010 issue of Art Journal, “Land Use in Contemporary Art” is an impressive, useful, and theoretically significant series of articles on a new genre of aesthetic practices. Presented with relevant introductions and histories, the contributions address social, economic, and conceptual issues on Land Use, which has attributes related to but occasionally outside what is usually considered art. Especially impressive are the differences among the texts, particularly in the authors’ descriptions of their values and approaches, which range from self-conscious nonjudgementalism to explicit activism. (CAA members will receive the Winter 2010 Art Journal later this month.)

CAA/Heritage Preservation Award for Distinction in Scholarship and Conservation
Joyce Hill Stoner

Based at the University of Delaware’s Art Conservation Department, Joyce Hill Stoner is a highly respected scholar, a dynamic, beloved professor, and a meticulous conservator of paintings. As director of the doctoral program in preservation studies, which developed from the first art-conversation program in the United States that she founded at her school in 1990, she has developed an interdisciplinary focus on art history and conservation. In the words of one nominator: “Three decades ago the prospect of conservation as a scholarly discipline was, at best, nascent if not merely notional. Since that time conservation scholarship has come to embody inquiries that include the investigation of an artist’s materials and techniques, the documentation of a contemporary artist’s ideas and intentions, the history of conservation, and the development of new techniques in the conservation of art, to name but a few. Stoner has contributed essential research in each of these areas and has thereby fundamentally shaped the discipline.”

Contact

For more information on the 2011 Awards for Distinction, please contact Emmanuel Lemakis, CAA director of programs. Visit the Awards section of the CAA website to read about past recipients. The Metropolitan Museum of Art is located at 1000 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10028.

Updated on January 27 and February 3, 2011.

January Deaths in the Arts

posted by January 04, 2011

CAA recognizes the lives and achievements of the following artists, scholars, architects, museum directors, collectors, and other men and women whose work has had a significant impact on the visual arts. Of special note is a text on the art historian Angela Rosenthal, written by her colleague David Bindman for CAA.

  • David Becker, curator of prints and drawings at the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston and professor of art history at several schools across New England, died on November 26, 2010. He was 63
  • Frederick S. Beckman, professor emeritus at the University of Notre Dame who taught industrial and graphic design for more than fifty years, died on October 31, 2010. He was 93
  • H. Allen Brooks, a professor of architecture at the University of Toronto for nearly thirty years, died on August 8, 2010, at the age of 84. An authority on Frank Lloyd Wright and Le Corbusier, he was a past president of the Society of Architectural Historians
  • Laura Cohen, cofounder of Krafti-Kit, an online fiber-arts kit store, who studied art history at the University of California in Santa Barbara, died on September 22, 2010. She was 42
  • William Cumming, a painter of the Northwest School whose contemporaries included Mark Tobey and Morris Graves, died on November 22, 2010, at the age of 93. He also taught at the Burnley School of Professional Art (now the Art Institute of Seattle) and Cornish College of the Arts
  • Nassos Daphnis, a Greek-born painter based in New York who showed his colorful, precise geometric abstractions at Leo Castelli Gallery, died on November 23, 2010, at age 96. He was also a noted horticulturist who grew hybrid tree peonies
  • Diane Darst, the founder and director of Learning to Look, an art-education program for children, and the author of two textbooks, Western Civilization to 1648 and Learning to Look: A Complete Art History and Art Appreciation Program for Grades K–8, died on June 22, 2010. She was 62
  • John Diebboll, an architect who worked for Michael Graves and who, as an artist, transformed pianos into sculptural objects, died on November 23, 2010, at age 54. He also founded his own firm, Diebboll Architects, in 2007
  • Denis Dutton, scholar, cultural commentator, author of The Art Instinct, and founder and editor of the website Arts & Letters Daily, died on December 28, 2010. He was 66
  • Robert Joseph Forsyth, professor emeritus of art history at Colorado State University who began his career at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts in the 1950s, died on June 19, 2010, at the age of 88
  • Sally D. Garen, professor of art history at the Corcoran College of Art and Design and Marymount University, among other schools around Washington, DC, died on November 29, 2010. She was 63
  • Kay Gaskill-Jaeger, an artist, quilter, and urban planner for the Texas State Parks Department who studied art history at the University of Texas at Austin, died on November 27, 2010, at the age of 61
  • Jane Tiley Griffin, an art historian who taught at the University of Maryland, George Washington University, and Howard University for more than thirty years, died on November 18, 2010, at the age of 84. She also organized tours to Southeast Asia
  • Garry Gross, a fashion photographer who took the infamous photograph of a nude Brooke Shields that was later appropriated by the artist Richard Prince, died on November 30, 2010. He was 73
  • Varnette P. Honeywood, an artist and teacher whose colorful works appeared in The Cosby Show during the 1980s, died on September 12, 2010, at the age of 59
  • Stephen Irwin, an artist based in Louisville, Kentucky, who was a member of a collective called Zephyr Gallery, died on December 27, 2010. He was 51
  • Theodore W. Kheel, a labor negotiator who was collected modern and contemporary art, especially works by Robert Rauschenberg, died on November 12, 2010. He was 96
  • Peter C. Marzio, the director of the Museum of Fine Arts in Houston since 1982 who oversaw a rapid growth in the permanent collection, died on December 9, 2010. He was 67
  • Roy R. Neuberger, the founder of the investment firm Neuberger Berman whose private collection comprises the core of a museum that bears his name at Purchase College, State University of New York, died on December 24, 2010. He was 107
  • Angela Rosenthal, an associate professor of art history at Dartmouth College and a scholar of eighteenth-century European art, died on November 11, 2010. David Bindman has contributed an obituary for CAA
  • Matthew Selsor, a curator and the director of the Anderson Gallery at Drake University, died on July 11, 2010, at the age of 27
  • Elizabeth C. Shepherd, a professor of art history at the University of Pittsburgh and the former head of the Frick Fine Arts Library at her school, died on April 6, 2010, at the age of 95
  • Andrzej Stanislaw Tomaszewski, a former director of the International Centre for the Study of the Preservation and Restoration of Cultural Property, died on October 25, 2010. Born in 1934, he had been a professor of conservation at numerous universities in Poland and Germany
  • John Warhola, a brother of Andy Warhol and founding member of the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, where he served as vice president for twenty years, died on December 24, 2010. He was 85
  • Peter J. Worth, an artist, art historian, and former chair of the Department of Art and Art History at the University of Nebraska in Lincoln, died on May 3, 2010. He was 93

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

Filed under: Obituaries, People in the News

Angela Rosenthal: In Memoriam

posted by January 04, 2011

David Bindman is emeritus professor of the history of art at University College London.

Angela Rosenthal

Angela Rosenthal

Angela Rosenthal, associate professor of art history at Dartmouth College in Hanover, New Hampshire, died on November 11, 2010. She was an exceptional scholar whose boundless energy, intellectual fecundity, and charismatic personality endeared her to her colleagues, students, and friends.

Born in Trier, Germany, Rosenthal attended university there, receiving her PhD magna cum laude in 1994. She had previously studied in England—at University College London, the Courtauld Institute of Art, and Westfield College—between 1986 and 1989. After working as curator of contemporary art at the Stadtgalerie in Saarbrücken (1994–95), she moved to the United States to become Andrew Mellon Assistant Professor of Art History at Northwestern University (1995–97). She came to Dartmouth in 1997 as an assistant professor.

Unusually wide ranging in the field of early modern visual culture, Rosenthal’s work embraced a global perspective, with an emphasis on cultural history, gender studies, and postcolonialism. Although her focus was on eighteenth-century British art, she wrote eloquently in recent years on images of slavery and whiteness, and on contemporary art of the African diaspora. Her most important publication was the magisterial Angelica Kauffman: Art and Sensibility (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2006), which she developed from her Trier University thesis on this Neoclassical painter. She was also working on a second major book, The White of Enlightenment: Racializing Bodies in Eighteenth-Century British Visual Culture, at the time of her death.

Angela Rosenthal

Angela Rosenthal’s Angelica Kauffman: Art and Sensibility

An energetic force in the academic tradition of essay compilations, Rosenthal partnered with Bernadette Fort to edit The Other Hogarth: Aesthetics of Difference (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2001), which won the 2002 Historians of British Art Book Award for the best multiauthor volume of the year. In addition, she compiled the forthcoming volume Invisible Subjects? Slave Portraiture in the Circum-Atlantic World, 1630–1890 (University of Chicago Press) with Agnes Lugo-Ortiz and was working on another collection, No Laughing Matter: Visual Humor in Ideas of Race, Nationality, and Ethnicity, that was based on the proceedings of a Humanities Institute she organized at Dartmouth in 2007.

Rosenthal also produced many articles in English and German on eighteenth-century art and contemporary subjects, some of which have become widely influential. Although it is difficult to pick just one from the many, her essay on “Visceral Culture: Blushing and the Legibility of Whiteness in Eighteenth-Century British Portraiture,” published in Deborah Cherry’s Art: History: Visual: Culture (Malden, MA: Blackwell, 2005), has become particularly seminal.

Rosenthal’s death at such an early stage of her career is an incalculable loss, but she will live on in the remarkable work she had already produced, and in the fond memories of all who had been touched by her vitality and warmth. She is survived by her husband, Adrian Randolph, Leon E. Williams Professor of Art History at Dartmouth College; her sister, Felicia Rosenthal, chief executive officer of CellGenix Technologie Transfer; and her parents, Peter and Anne Rosenthal.

Filed under: Obituaries