posted by Christopher Howard — June 24, 2011
This week CAA filed an amicus brief in the case of Golan v. Holder, which the United States Supreme Court will likely hear later this year. The issue raised in Golan v. Holder is if Congress could, consistent with the First Amendment, remove certain foreign works from the public domain and bring them back into copyright when it enacted the Uruguay Round Agreements Act (URAA) of 1994. A lower court, the US Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit, held that the URAA was constitutional. When the Supreme Court agreed to hear the case, Jeffrey P. Cunard, CAA’s counsel, was asked if CAA would join several like-minded organizations and individuals in signing onto a brief that would support the importance of the public domain. The Executive Committee of the CAA Board of Directors considered the importance of the public domain (works no longer in copyright) as a wellspring of resources for artists, scholars, and other creators while discussing the detrimental effect of removing works from the public domain. The committee also noted that a filing by CAA in Golan v. Holder would be consistent with the organization’s filing of an amicus brief in the Supreme Court case of Eldred v. Ashcroft. In that 2003 decision, the court determined that Congress did not violate the First Amendment when it extended the term of copyright through the Sonny Bono Copyright Term Extension Act of 1998. After reviewing drafts of the current brief, the Executive Committee authorized the filing of the Golan v. Holder brief on June 20, 2011. To learn more about Golan v. Holder and the issues at stake, please review the following articles, published online in March and April 2011:
- Lyle Denniston, “A Major Test of Copyright Power,” SCOTUSblog, March 7, 2011
- Edward Lee, “Golan v. Holder: Supreme Court to Review Copyrighting Works in Public Domain,” Huffington Post, March 9, 2011
- Shannon Mo, “Cert. Granted in Golan v. Holder,” Re:Marks, April 1, 2011
The principal author of the brief, Jennifer Urban of the Samuelson Law, Technology, and Public Policy Clinic at the University of California’s School of Law in Berkeley, received assistance from Cunard and his firm, Debevoise & Plimpton LLP. Others signing onto the brief include individual writers, musicians, and scholars as well as other organizations. Cunard extends his thanks to Anne Collins Goodyear, curator at the National Portrait Gallery and CAA vice president for Annual Conference, for providing the excellent example of a visual artist, Marcel Duchamp, using a public-domain work, the Mona Lisa, to create a new one (pp. 14–15). The brief also cites other artists, from Pablo Picasso and Jasper Johns to Banksy and Shepard Fairey. In addition, Cunard has noted the extensive reference to CAA’s involvement in the orphan-works proceeding (pp. 33–35), which helps the brief support the proposition that the URAA’s copyright restoration of many foreign works had exacerbated the orphan-works problem. CAA’s involvement in Golan v. Holder is the latest event in its long history of advocacy efforts regarding freedom of speech and copyright issues. On behalf of all CAA members, the board is grateful to Cunard, one of the nation’s leading experts in copyright law, for the work he has put into the brief and for his continued support of the organization.
In honor of its yearlong Centennial celebration, CAA has initiated a project to collect, catalogue, and make accessible many written, photographic, and electronic documents relating to its past. This effort will complement the history chronicled in The Eye, the Hand, the Mind: 100 Years of the College Art Association, edited by Susan Ball. This summer and fall, CAA plans to post dozens of text-searchable PDFs of CAA News from 1976 to 2001 and full conference programs since the late 1930s, among other publications, on its website.
Particularly in its early years but even in recent times, CAA did not preserve every document that it produced. Materials not collected or saved include: conference programs prior to 1937; catalogues from CAA’s traveling-exhibition program, active from 1929 to 1937; documentation of member surveys; Placement Bureau listings before 1968; and membership brochures, forms, and related materials predating 1990. CAA hopes that members may have copies of these, along with personal photographs and other visual or textual ephemera from meetings and events in decades past.
If you possess materials that might help fill gaps in CAA’s historical archive and are willing to donate or have CAA scan them, send a brief description of the items to Lauren Stark, CAA manager of programs and archivist. Please do not mail anything to the CAA office until she discusses your materials with you.
Image: Louise Nevelson addresses the audience at a “rowdy” and “tumultuous” conference session called “Women Artists Speak Out,” while Martha Edelheit (left) and Patricia Mainardi (center) look on. Read about the panel in the Spring 1973 Art Journal (photograph by Nina Howell Starr)
See when and where CAA members are exhibiting their art, and view images of their work.
Solo Exhibitions by Artist Members is published every two months: in February, April, June, August, October, and December. To learn more about submitting a listing, please follow the instructions on the main Member News page.
Kent Christensen. Eleven Fine Art, London, England, April 1–May 14, 2011. Sensory Overload. Oil on linen and panel.
Cora Cohen. Field Institute Hombroich, Raketenstation Museum Insel Hombroich, Neuss, Germany, June 7–26, 2011. Cora Cohen – Altered X Rays. Installation of paintings on exposed x-ray film.
Nicole Pietrantoni. Icelandic Printmakers’ Association (Íslensk Grafík), Reykjavik, Iceland, May 14–29, 2011. Know Your Place. Mixed media.
Pat Adams. National Association of Women Artists, New York, June 7–29, 2011. Pat Adams. Painting and mixed media.
Les Barta. Galesburg Civic Art Center Gallery, Galesburg, Illinois, May 20–June 18, 2011. Les Barta. Photoconstruction.
Elisabeth Condon. Lesley Heller Workspace, New York, April 13–May 15, 2011. Climb the Black Mountain. Acrylic and oil on linen.
Jen P. Harris. Daniel Cooney Fine Art, New York, June 9–30, 2011. American Kiss. Painting and work on paper.
Joan Marie Kelly. Blue Mountain Gallery, New York, July 12–30, 2011. Zones of Contact: The Public Art of Joan Marie Kelly. Oil on canvas.
Annie Shaver-Crandell. Paula Barr Chelsea, New York, May 5–14, 2011. Speaking Likenesses: Portraits of Cats and Dogs. Acrylic on canvas.
Curtis Bartone. Telfair Art Museum, Savannah, Georgia, February 4–June 26, 2011. Domain: Drawings, Etchings, and Lithographs by Curtis Bartone. Charcoal on paper, lithography, etching, and aquatint.
Dennis Joyce. B.I.G. (Barrier Island Group) Arts, Sanibel, Florida, April 2–30, 2011. Expressive, Energetic, Explorative Exhibit. Sculpture and painting.
Sarah Hurwitz. Eye Lounge, Phoenix, Arizona, May 20–June 11, 2011. Hurwitz Meat Market. Installation.
posted by Christopher Howard — June 20, 2011
Essays in the June 2011 issue of The Art Bulletin, the leading publication of international art-historical scholarship, examine a range of topics that include works by Pieter Bruegel the Elder, Philip Guston, Edgar Degas, and Jean-Honoré Fragonard. A fifth essay on aesthetics and a collection of important book reviews round out the issue, which has been mailed to all individual CAA members who elect to receive the journal, and to all institutional members. The issue is dedicated to the memory of the late Anne L. Schroder, an expert on eighteenth- and nineteenth-century French art; one of her final essays appears in it.
Leading off the issue is Margaret A. Sullivan’s article that uncovers the beginnings of genre in Bruegel’s debt to stoicism, ancient satire, and the art of Pieter Aertsen. Next, Schroder explores Fragonard’s later career through two revived projects, his illustrations for La Fontaine’s Contes et nouvelles (1788–1809) and his unfinished painting series, the Progress of Love. For “Hegel’s Contested Legacy,” Jason Gaiger reexamines the Hegelian inheritance in art history in light of newly published transcripts of the lectures on aesthetics and, in doing so, raises broader questions about the concourse between art history and philosophy.
Looking at French art in the nineteenth century, André Dombrowski reveals layered political and historical significations embedded in Degas’s Place de la Concorde (ca. 1875), an urban genre portrait of Viscount Lepic and his daughters. For his contribution, Robert Slifkin finds that Guston’s unsettling return to figuration in the 1960s, which partook in a larger “1930s renaissance,” used the disjunction between two moments to comment on the present.
The June 2011 issue includes reviews of two books on humor in Greek vase painting and Roman visual culture, two on Chinese painting, one on medieval Buddhist sculpture, and one on forgery in premodern German art, as well as an exhibition review of Art of Two Germanys/Cold War Cultures, which appeared in Los Angeles, Nuremberg, and Berlin in 2009–10.
Please see the full table of contents for June for more details. The next issue, to be published in September 2011, will feature essays on Roman mosaic floors, an emblematic Michelangelo cartoon for a fresco, portraiture in France after 1789, and the American painter John Sloan.
People in the News lists new hires, positions, and promotions in three sections: Academe, Museums and Galleries, and Organizations and Publications.
The section is published every two months: in February, April, June, August, October, and December. To learn more about submitting a listing, please follow the instructions on the main Member News page.
Michaël J. Amy has been promoted to professor of the history of art in the College of Imaging Arts and Sciences at Rochester Institute of Technology in Rochester, New York.
Mary D. Garrard, professor emerita of American University in Washington, DC, was the William Fleming Distinguished Visiting Professor at Syracuse University in Syracuse, New York, in April 2011.
Beauvais Lyons, James R. Cox Professor of Art at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville, has been appointed a Chancellor Professor at his school. The honor comes with a $20,000 research stipend.
Museums and Galleries
Amy Brandt, formerly assistant curator at American Federation of Arts in New York, has been named McKinnon Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art at the Chrysler Museum of Art in Norfolk, Virginia.
Cosmin Costinas will join Para/Site, a contemporary art space in Hong Kong, China, as executive director and curator in September 2011. He was previously curator at Basis voor actuele kunst in Utrecht, the Netherlands.
Olivier Meslay, curator of European and American art at the Dallas Museum of Art in Texas, has been appointed interim director of his institution, following the resignation of Bonnie Pitman.
Joel Smith, curator of photography at the Princeton University Art Museum in Princeton, New Jersey, has been named Peter C. Bunnell Curator of Photography, a newly endowed position.
John R. Stomberg, currently deputy director and chief curator of the Williams College Museum of Art in Williamstown, Massachusetts, has been chosen to lead the Mount Holyoke College Art Museum in South Hadley, Massachusetts, as director. He begins the new job on August 1, 2011.
Michael Taylor, curator of modern art and department head of modern and contemporary art at the Philadelphia Museum of Art in Pennsylvania, has become director of the Hood Museum of Art in Hanover, New Hampshire.
Organizations and Publications
Heath Fox, assistant dean of arts and humanities at the University of California, San Diego, since 2006, has been appointed deputy director of operations at the Broad Museum in Los Angeles, California.
Anne Helmreich, formerly director of the Baker-Nord Center for the Humanities and associate professor of art history at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio, has been appointed senior program officer at the Getty Foundation in Los Angeles, California.
Read about the latest news from institutional members.
Institutional News is published every two months: in February, April, June, August, October, and December. To learn more about submitting a listing, please follow the instructions on the main Member News page.
The Archives of American Art at the Smithsonian Institution, based in New York and Washington, DC, has received a $3 million grant from the Terra Foundation for American Art to support another five years of the archives’ digitization project and to fund a new position that will create and oversee related online scholarly and educational outreach initiatives. This second grant brings the Terra’s total gift to the archives to $6.6 million over a ten-year period.
The Currier Museum of Art in Manchester, New Hampshire, has received a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts to support the exhibition Jon Brooks: Bringing Art and Nature to Children and Families. A comprehensive selection of educational and community outreach activities will accompany the retrospective exhibition of works by Brooks, a New Hampshire artist who is a leading member of the American studio furniture movement.
The Honolulu Academy of Arts and the Contemporary Museum, both in Hawai‘i, have announced that the two institutions will merge, effective July 1, 2011. Under the agreement, the latter museum will gift its collection and assets to the former one.
The Philadelphia Museum of Art in Pennsylvania has been approved for reaccreditation by the Accreditation Commission of the Association of American Museums, a nonprofit organization based in Washington, DC.
Rutgers University’s Visual Arts Department has received a $3.4 million gift from Marlene A. and David A. Tepper to endow a faculty chair position at the Mason Gross School of the Arts and to fund scholarships in the painting program.
The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts in Richmond has received reaccreditation from the Accreditation Commission of the American Association of Museum, based in Washington, DC.
The Whitney Museum of American Art in New York has been reaccredited by the Accreditation Commission of the Washington, DC–based Association of American Museums.
posted by Christopher Howard — June 16, 2011
Each month, CAA’s Committee on Women in the Arts produces a curated list, called CWA Picks, of recommended exhibitions and events related to feminist art and scholarship in North America and around the world.
The CWA Picks for June 2011 include a nationwide list of screenings for !Women Art Revolution, Lynn Hershman Leeson’s documentary film on the feminist art movement, and a retrospective of the work of the mask-clad Guerrilla Girls, opening at the National Museum of Women in the Arts in Washington, DC. In addition, two events—a three-day conference in Lisbon and a survey of the infamous Young British Artist, Tracey Emin, in London—give an international flavor to the picks.
Check the archive of CWA Picks at the bottom of the page, as several museum and gallery shows listed in previous months may still be on view or touring.
Amy Ingrid Schlegel is director of galleries and collections for the Aidekman Arts Center at Tufts University in Medford, Massachusetts. She served on the CAA Board of Directors from 2007 to 2011 and was liaison to the Committee on Women in the Arts from 2008 to 2011.
When I first met Sylvia Sleigh at her Chelsea brownstone in 1993 during the course of my dissertation research, I realized what a treasure trove her home/studio was and how enchanting her amiable, anecdotal manner of recalling the past also was. Until recently, within the last decade, most people knew little about Sleigh’s seventy-year oeuvre other than her best-known painting, The Turkish Bath (1973), often reproduced as one of the very few works by a woman artist in art-history textbooks. Despite the tokenistic way in which many students might know Sleigh’s work, it has long been clear how the women’s movement in New York during the 1970s helped boost her from relative obscurity since arriving in the United States from England in 1961, where she had just one solo exhibition. Now, in 2011, she posthumously received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Women’s Caucus for Art, after earning the Distinguished Artist Award for Lifetime Achievement from the College Art Association in 2008.
It seems disingenuous not to acknowledge and assess how Sleigh’s remarkable and, in many ways, paradoxical career as a feminist artist was fostered, even born of, her long-term monogamous relationship with the art critic, curator, and writer Lawrence Alloway, whom she married in 1956 (and remained happily married to until his premature death in 1990). Sleigh and Alloway managed a long-term romance and marriage while their roles as “traditional” realist painter and “avant-garde” critic and theorist diverged during the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s. Yet each participated in the other’s private, creative fantasies, and those fantasies were projected in the creative work of both, produced on different floors in that Chelsea brownstone.
Indeed, their relationship was the subtext of a 2001 retrospective exhibition I curated in Philadelphia, “An Unnerving Romanticism”: The Art of Sylvia Sleigh and Lawrence Alloway. Sleigh painted more portraits of Alloway than of anyone else; he also appeared several times in her group ensembles, including The Turkish Bath. Naturally, Alloway’s visage could be identified throughout the exhibition, and drawings he penned in ink within longer letters written to Sleigh during his travels were also part of the display.
The exhibition’s title was lifted from an undated letter Eleanor Antin wrote to Sleigh after seeing Sleigh’s 1971 painting Philip Golub Reclining: “It romanticism is unnerving,” Antin gushed. “The contrast between your fierceness and his lush languourous [sic] beauty is violent.…. Sylvia, dear, you are a magnificent romantic and not a lady.” In the work Golub, then about sixteen years old, gazes dreamily into a large, wall-mounted mirror, while Sleigh’s reflection—she is seated in front of her easel—scrutinizes the sitter’s naked, teenaged body and effeminate face partly obscured by his long, wavy hair. In Golub’s case, as the son of Sleigh and Alloway’s close friends Nancy Spero and Leon Golub, the desire was purely visual—Philip is essentially eye candy—but this certainly was not always the case.
One of Sleigh’s gifts as a painter was her ability to establish an intensely personal and professional dynamic between herself as creative subject and, in the case of her many straight or gay male sitters, the object of her desiring gaze. This intense dynamic also characterized her relationship with Alloway. Already wed and ten years his senior, she married him after a five-year affair. Unlike some creative couples, romantic love and intellectual partnership were not incompatible for Sleigh and Alloway. They were each other’s muses and sounding boards. They were, in many ways, separate but equal partners, autonomous agents yet fondly attached. Despite their career imbalance, particularly during the 1960s, when Alloway was in his heyday, they nurtured one another’s aesthetic and intellectual sensibilities, including their penchant for iconoclasm in their separate challenges to the art world’s prevailing notions of aesthetic quality judged in exclusively formal terms.
During the 1970s some reviewers questioned the quality of Sleigh’s paintings depicting nude men. Ironically, it is those portraits for which Sleigh is now canonized in art history today. Linda Nochlin argued in her 1974 article “Some Women Realists: Painters of the Figure” that quality in Sleigh’s work was a red herring, writing that Sleigh “most pointedly raises the issues involved in the female artist’s representation of the male nude. While not overtly political in intention, [her works representing nude men] are certainly political in effect, if we accept sexuality as one of the major political arenas of our day.”1 While Sleigh did not deliberately distort her figures, she tended to idealize the bodies of her models and to render their faces as highly individualized portraits. This propensity creates a frisson that some critics may have misread as incompetence. Or, as Nochlin asserted, “Similar accusations of formal weakness, technical insufficiency, or even willful distortion were, of course, leveled at Courbet, Manet and even at the young Ingres, at least in part because the underlying politics of their art affronted ‘normal,’ i.e., unconscious of ideological expectations.”2 We recognize in hindsight that sex discrimination hindered Sleigh’s reputation as one of the most important painters of the twentieth century for decades. While Alloway chose not to publish a single review of Sleigh’s solo exhibitions, he certainly understood the forceful challenge her paintings of nude men posed to assumptions about spectatorship as a male domain of pleasure. After all, the same art gallery that he critiqued as a reviewer for the Nation and for many art magazines during the 1970s exhibited her nude and seminude portraits of him.
Sleigh’s paintings are, fundamentally, intimate testaments to the relationships that she maintained and nurtured over her lengthy, prodigious career. As an index of the people she knew at the time, her oeuvre collectively reads like a perpetual, unnerving romance with that rare professional intimacy expected from a realist painter who works from life, a romance that is unnerving for its unexpected capacity to simultaneously charm and alarm.
1. Linda Nochlin, “Some Women Realists: Painters of the Figure” Arts 48, no. 8 (May 1974), 32.
Grants, Awards, and Honors
CAA recognizes its members for their professional achievements, be it a grant, fellowship, residency, book prize, honorary degree, or related award.
Grants, Awards, and Honors is published every two months: in February, April, June, August, October, and December. To learn more about submitting a listing, please follow the instructions on the main Member News page.
Elizabeth Bolman, associate professor of art history in the Tyler School of Art at Temple University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, has received a 2011 John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship in fine-arts research. She will study magnificence and asceticism in Upper Egypt via the Red Monastery Church.
Michele Brody, an artist based in New York, has been awarded a summer residency at Quimby Colony in Portland, Maine, where she will focus on her Drawing Roots series.
Carissa Carman, an MFA student in fibers at Concordia University in Montreal, Quebec, has received a $2,000 Textile Society of America Travel Grant to attend and participate in the International Symposium and Exhibition on Natural Dyes, which took place April 24–30, 2011, in La Rochelle, France.
Mary D. Garrard, professor emerita of American University in Washington, DC, has received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Mississippi Institute of Arts and Letters.
Charles Goldman, an artist based in Brooklyn, New York, has been award a 2011 John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship in fine arts.
Michelle Handelman has been awarded a 2011 John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship in film and video. She will spend the fellowship period working on her new project, Irma Vep, the last breath, a three-channel video installation based on the life of the actress and film director Musidora, and the silent-film character she was best known for, Irma Vep, from Les Vampires (1915, directed by Louis Feuillade).
Anne D. Hedeman, professor of art and medieval studies at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, has received a 2011 John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship in medieval history.
Corin Hewitt, an artist and assistant professor of sculpture and extended media at Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, has been awarded a 2011 John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship in fine arts.
Alison Luchs has been tapped by the Italian Art Society to deliver the 2011 Italian Art Society–Kress Foundation Lecture in Florence, Italy, taking place on June 8, 2011.
Billie Grace Lynn has received the 2011 West Grand Prize. A $25,000 award will assist her project, called Mad Cow Motorcycle, in which she will develop a biodiesel motorcycle to raise awareness for greenhouses gases coming from commercial cattle farms.
Richard Minsky has received the 2011 Worldwide Books Award for Publications for The Art of American Book Covers, 1875–1930 (New York: George Braziller, 2010). The Art Libraries Society of North America awarded him a certificate and a $1,000 prize for his book at its recent annual conference, held jointly with the Visual Resources Association.
Linda Nochlin, Lila Acheson Wallace Professor of Modern Art at the Institute of Fine Arts, New York University, has received a 2011 Icon Award in the Arts from the Bruce Museum in Greenwich, Connecticut.
Jennifer Ellen Robertson, professor of anthropology at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, has received a 2011 John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship in East Asian studies.
Allison Smith, a sculptor based in Oakland, California, has been awarded a $50,000 USA Fellowship for artistic excellence from United States Artists.
Susan Webster, Jane Williams Mahoney Professor of Art History and American Studies at the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia, has received a 2011 John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship in fine-arts research. She will study European architecture and Andean masters in colonial Quito, Ecuador.
Bradley Wester, an artist based in New York, has been awarded two residencies. From September to November 2011, he will be a resident artist at AIR Antwerpen in Belgium. In February 2012, he will take part in the Hermitage Artist Retreat, based in Englewood, Florida, and comprised of writers, painters, composers, playwrights, poets, choreographers, performance artists, sculptors, and other artists whose work defies categorization. (He was also a resident there in March 2011).
Kristina Wilson, associate professor of art history at Clark University in Worcester, Massachusetts, has received the twenty-third Charles C. Eldredge Prize for Distinguished Scholarship in American Art, awarded by the Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington, DC, for her book, The Modern Eye: Stieglitz, MoMA, and the Art of the Exhibition, 1925–1934 (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2009).
Exhibitions Curated by CAA Members
Check out details on recent shows organized by CAA members who are also curators.
Exhibitions Curated by CAA Members is published every two months: in February, April, June, August, October, and December. To learn more about submitting a listing, please follow the instructions on the main Member News page.
Wanda M. Corn and Tirza True Latimer. Seeing Gertrude Stein: Five Stories. Contemporary Jewish Museum, San Francisco, California, May 12–September 6, 2011.
Heather Gibson. Patterns of Consumption. Atrium Gallery, Tyler School of Art, Temple University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, April 2–15, 2011.
John Silvis and Brett Dickinson. Theodolite. New York Center for Art and Media Studies, New York, April 6–21, 2011.
Robert Storr and Francesca Pietropaolo. North by New York: New Nordic Art. Third Floor Galleries, Scandinavia House, Nordic Center in America, American-Scandinavian Foundation, New York, April 14–August 19, 2011.
Virginia-Lee Webb. Ancestors of the Lake: Art of Lake Sentani and Humboldt Bay, New Guinea. Menil Collection, Houston, Texas, May 6–August 28, 2011.