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CAA has announced the recipients of the 2012 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 recipients at a special awards ceremony during the 100th Annual Conference in Los Angeles, on Thursday afternoon, February 23, 2012, 12:30–2:00 PM, at the Los Angeles Convention Center. Led by Barbara Nesin, president of the CAA Board of Directors, the awards ceremony will take place in West Hall Meeting Room 502AB, Level 2; it is free and open to the public. The Los Angeles Convention Center is located downtown, at 1201 South Figueroa Street adjacent to the Staples Center.

The 2012 Annual Conference—presenting scholarly sessions, panel discussions, professional-development workshops, a Book and Trade Fair, and more—is the largest gathering of artists, art historians, students, and arts professionals in the United States.

David Hammons, Distinguished Artist Award for Lifetime Achievement

The innovative, far-ranging work of David Hammons is central to the history of postwar art in all its complexities. For the past five decades, Hammons has ingeniously blurred boundaries separating sculpture, Conceptual art, performance, and installation. Through a restless hybridization of practices, he has explored many timely and urgent contemporary issues, commenting on the civil rights movement, racial stereotyping, institutional exclusion, and the commodification of artistic identity. Hammons is not only one of the great political artists of our time, but also a crafter of careful assemblage and canny composition, creating irreverent, sometimes scathing works that are as formally riveting as they are incisive.

Adrian Piper, Artist Award for Distinguished Body of Work

Since the late 1960s, the provocative and often challenging work of Adrian Piper has profoundly influenced the language and form of Conceptual art. Her 2010 exhibition Past Time: Selected Works 1973–1995, presented at Elizabeth Dee Gallery in New York, showcased several bodies of work that dealt with dissent in varying forms and represented a period of time widely considered as her most influential. Piper’s artistic practice flirts with the syntax of Minimalism and infuses it with explicitly political content, addressing issues of race, gender, and identity politics. Additionally, her work has been shaped by studies in philosophy, a subject on which she has lectured since earning a doctorate in the discipline thirty years ago. A keen interlocutor of mass culture, Piper has produced art and writing that makes us question our constantly shifting contemporary social landscape.

Lucy R. Lippard, Distinguished Feminist Award

For more than five decades, the critic, activist, and curator Lucy R. Lippard has been a consistent, passionate, and influential advocate of feminist art. A prolific author first honored by CAA in 1975 with the Frank Jewett Mather Award, she is known for her concise, accessible, and lucid prose that brings feminist perspectives to bear on a wide scope of art and activism—from Eva Hesse (1976) to The Pink Glass Swan: Selected Essays on Feminist Art (1995). Lippard’s curatorial efforts—such as c. 7,500 (1973), the groundbreaking all-woman exhibition of Conceptual art—have also been vital to the feminist art movement and offered some of the earliest considerations of global feminisms. Throughout her life, she has modeled a complex, ever-changing point of view as it intersects with progressive notions of art and politics.

Allan Sekula, Distinguished Lifetime Achievement Award for Writing on Art

Allan Sekula has devoted his life as an artist to writing, photography, installation, and film. While his multidisciplinary approach to problems of representation and politics has earned him accolades as an artist, his writings have helped students, scholars, and the public to think critically about interventions in the political and social realities of our world. The essays collected in his first book, Photography against the Grain: Essays and Photo Works 1973–83 (1984), significantly altered the way in which the documentary function of photography was conceptualized. His more recent volumes—such as Fish Story (1995), Titanic’s Wake (2003), and Performance under Working Conditions (2003)—mobilize us through his vision and words to carefully consider the effects of capitalism, globalization, information formats, and the dematerialization of image and word.

David Antin, Frank Jewett Mather Award

David Antin has been a singular, combative voice in art criticism since the mid 1960s. His Radical Coherency: Selected Essays on Art and Literature 1966 to 2005 (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2011) demonstrates his sustained critical commitment, constant formal experimentation, and a style of thought and expression that is unique to both the visual arts and poetry. The essays and “talking poems” in Radical Coherency display a no-nonsense, skeptical intelligence squaring off firsthand with the work of artists—many of them his contemporaries—who were bent on radically transforming art, from Marcel Duchamp and Andy Warhol to the artists of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art’s 1971 exhibition Art and Technology.

Alexander Nagel, Charles Rufus Morey Book Award

Alexander Nagel’s The Controversy of Renaissance Art (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2011) is a compelling reexamination of the key paradoxes that define this era and the works associated with it. Guided in part by sixteenth-century religious history and the writings of historians of that era, Nagel positions sixteenth-century art making in the realm of the experimental, a vantage also in concert with the efforts of the religious reformers concerned with ritual and devotional practices usually associated with the Middle Ages. A breakthrough volume that makes significant contributions to scholarship on sixteenth-century Italian art, Nagel’s book compels art historians more generally to reconsider “standard” interpretations of many canonical monuments of the periods in which they are working.

Maryan W. Ainsworth, Stijn Alsteens, and Nadine M. Orenstein, Alfred H. Barr Jr. Award

Man, Myth, and Sensual Pleasures: Jan Gossart’s Renaissance (New York: Metropolitan Museum of Art, in association with Yale University Press, 2010) is a “summa” of Maryan Ainsworth’s decades-long exploration of the artistic legacy of this place and time. Using a variety of methods—technical analysis, connoisseurship, archival research, biography, iconography, and sustained attention to each object—she and the other authors place Gossart at the center of a rich world of intertwined relationships. Together they reveal the artist’s groundbreaking engagement with Rome and antiquity, his intent study of architecture and sculpture, his carefully crafted experimentation in a variety of media, and his amazing versatility as a painter of religious scenes, mythological subjects, and innovative portraits over a long career. The book is also significant for the insightful way in which it situates Gossart among his contemporaries, including the painters Albrecht Dürer and Lucas Cranach, the sculptor Conrad Meit, and the patron and connoisseur Philip of Burgundy.

Roy Flukinger, Alfred H. Barr Jr. Award for Smaller Museums, Libraries, Collections, and Exhibitions

With The Gernsheim Collection (Austin: Harry Ransom Center, University of Texas Press, 2010), Roy Flukinger has crafted an exceptional catalogue of the Helmut and Alison Gernsheim Collection, one of the earliest and most comprehensive collections of photography in the world. One hundred and twenty-six items are beautifully illustrated and analyzed in readable, absorbing prose that traces the story of the couple’s achievements as sleuths, gatherers, connoisseurs, photographers, devotees, and champions, while at the same time recognizing and examining their (sometimes controversial) role as architects of the study of photography. Contributions by Alison Nordstrom and Mark Haworth-Booth illuminate the role this collection has played in the history of photography as well as the Gernsheims’ commitment to the medium as a form of fine art. In this way, the book considers the process (in addition to the underlying principles, assumptions, and implications) of canon formulation in an emerging discipline.

Jacki Apple, Distinguished Teaching of Art Award

For the past twenty-eight years, Jacki Apple has provided students at the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, California, with a dynamic, inspiring, and evolving model of the possibilities and rewards of an interdisciplinary practice. An artist, writer, and producer, she has produced work in multiple modes—performance, installation, drawing, book art, photography, film, radio, text, and audio—and presciently engages the opportunities afforded by new technologies. Praised by students and colleagues alike for her intelligence, generosity, enthusiasm, and critical discernment, Apple adeptly bridges various disciplines using a wide scope of knowledge about contemporary culture and technology and a depth of understanding about the history and practice of the visual and performing arts. A gifted communicator, Apple is exceptionally effective in encouraging students to think for themselves.

Gabriel P. Weisberg, Distinguished Teaching of Art History Award

Gabriel P. Weisberg’s distinguished teaching record—which includes faculty positions at the University of New Mexico, the University of Cincinnati, the University of Pittsburgh, Case Western Reserve University, and the University of Minnesota, where he is currently a professor in the Department of Art History—spans nearly half a century. His students, both graduate and undergraduate, praise his presentation of art as a dynamic interplay among culture, aesthetics, and human experience, revealed through direct examination of works of art in the context of primary historical documentation. Weisberg’s varied and distinguished background as a historian, curator, and administrator seamlessly integrates academic and museum realms, and his scholarship has shaped the discipline of nineteenth-century art history in a profound way.

Francesca G. Bewer, CAA/Heritage Preservation Award for Distinction in Scholarship and Conservation

Francesca G. Bewer, research curator in the Harvard Art Museums’ Straus Center for Conservation and Technical Studies, is an exemplary technical art historian. An expert in the materials and techniques of European Renaissance and Baroque bronze sculpture, she trained as both an art historian, at University College London, and as a conservator, at Palazzo Spinelli in Florence. A highly valued teacher and lecturer, Bewer has published a steady stream of superb texts in conservation and art-historical journals, exhibition catalogues, and monographs. She also recently authored a book on the history of conservation, A Laboratory for Art: Harvard’s Fogg Museum and the Emergence of Conservation in America, 1900–1950 (Cambridge, MA: Harvard Art Museum; New Haven: Yale University Press, 2010).

Rebecca Molholt, Arthur Kingsley Porter Prize

Rebecca Molholt’s article “Roman Labyrinth Mosaics and the Experience of Motion,” published in the September 2011 issue of The Art Bulletin, is an imaginative study of seven North African mosaics that were once floors in Roman bathhouses. She introduces a fresh methodology for their assessment, building on a distinction that Walter Benjamin drew between “vertical and horizontal forms of viewing.” Moholt argues that mosaics have long been read as if they were vertical easel paintings rather than understood as “materials underfoot,” which are experienced while kinetically moving over their horizontal surfaces. She uncovers a metaphoric reading of these mosaics that relates the labyrinths, their subject matter, and architectural context—the Roman bath—to athleticism and heroism.

Art Journal Award

An article by the online journal Triple Canopy, authored primarily by Colby Chamberlain of Columbia University, has won the 2012 Art Journal Award. The text, called “The Binder and the Server,” appears in the Winter 2011 issue.

Contact

For more information on the 2012 Awards for Distinction, please contact Lauren Stark, CAA manager of programs. Visit the Awards section of the CAA website to read about all past recipients.

CAA announced the shortlists for the 2012 Charles Rufus Morey Book Award and the two Alfred H. Barr Jr. Awards on December 2, 2011.

CAA is pleased to announce the finalists for the 2012 Charles Rufus Morey Book Award and the Alfred H. Barr Jr. Award. The winners of both prizes, along with the recipients of ten other Awards for Distinction, will be announced in January and presented during a special ceremony in Los Angeles, in conjunction with the 100th Annual Conference and Centennial Celebration.

The Charles Rufus Morey Book Award honors an especially distinguished book in the history of art, published in any language between September 1, 2010, and August 31, 2011. The four finalists are:

  • Michael W. Cole, Ambitious Form: Giambologna, Ammanati, and Danti in Florence (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2011)
  • Rebecca Messbarger, The Lady Anatomist: The Life and Work of Anna Morandi Manzolini (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2010)
  • Alexander Nagel, The Controversy of Renaissance Art (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2011)
  • Nina Rowe, The Jew, The Cathedral, and the Medieval City: Synagoga and Ecclesia in the Thirteenth Century (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2011)

The Alfred H. Barr Jr. Award for museum scholarship is presented to the author(s) of an especially distinguished catalogue in the history of art, published between September 1, 2010, and August 31, 2011, under the auspices of a museum, library, or collection. The three finalists are:

  • Maryan W. Ainsworth, ed., Man, Myth, and Sensual Pleasures: Jan Gossart’s Renaissance; The Complete Works (New York: Metropolitan Museum of Art, in association with Yale University Press, 2010)
  • Suzanne Glover Lindsay, Daphne S. Barbour, and Shelley G. Sturman, Edgar Degas Sculpture (Washington, DC: National Gallery of Art, 2010)
  • Elizabeth Morrison and Anne D. Hedeman, Imagining the Past in France: History in Manuscript Painting, 1250–1500(Los Angeles: J. Paul Getty Museum, 2010)

The Barr jury has also shortlisted two catalogues for the second Barr Award for Smaller Museums, Libraries, or Collections. The titles are:

  • Roy Flukinger, The Gernsheim Collection (Austin: Harry Ransom Center, University of Texas Press, 2010)
  • James T. Tice and James G. Harper, Giuseppe Vasi’s Rome: Lasting Impressions from the Age of the Grand Tour (Eugene: Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art, University of Oregon, 2010)

The presentation of the 2012 Awards for Distinction will take place on Thursday afternoon, February 23, 12:30–2:00 PM, in West Hall Meeting Room 502AB, Level 2, Los Angeles Convention Center. The event is free and open to the public. For more information about CAA’s Awards for Distinction, please contact Lauren Stark, CAA manager of programs, at 212-392-4405.

Filed under: Annual Conference, Awards, Books

To conclude the Centennial year, CAA encourages members to nominate colleagues for ten of the twelve Awards for Distinction for 2012, to be awarded next February at the 100th Annual Conference in Los Angeles, California. The different perspectives and anecdotes from multiple personal letters of recommendation provide award juries with a clearer picture of the qualities and attributes of the nominees.

In the letter, state who you are; how you know (of) the nominee; how the nominee and/or his or her work or publication has affected your practice or studies and the pursuit of your career; and why you think this person (or, in a collaboration, these people) deserves to be recognized. You should also contact up to five colleagues, students, peers, collaborators, and/or coworkers of the nominee to write letters.

All submissions must include a completed nomination form and one copy of the nominee’s CV (limit: two pages); book awards do not require a CV. Nominations for book and exhibition awards should be for the authors of books published or works exhibited or staged between September 1, 2010, and August 31, 2011. No more than five letters per candidate are considered.

Please read the descriptions of the twelve awards, the names of all past recipients, and the full instructions for nominations. You may also write to Lauren Stark, CAA manager of programs, for more information. Deadline: August 31, 2011. The deadline for the Charles Rufus Morey Book Award and the Alfred H. Barr Jr. Award passed on July 31.

Filed under: Annual Conference, Awards, Centennial

To close the Centennial year, CAA encourages you to nominate colleagues for the twelve Awards for Distinction for 2012, to be awarded next February at the 100th Annual Conference in Los Angeles, California. The different perspectives and anecdotes from multiple personal letters of recommendation provide award juries with a clearer picture of the qualities and attributes of the nominees.

In the letter, state who you are; how you know (of) the nominee; how the nominee and/or his or her work or publication has affected your practice or studies and the pursuit of your career; and why you think this person (or, in a collaboration, these people) deserves to be recognized. You should also contact up to five colleagues, students, peers, collaborators, and/or coworkers of the nominee to write letters.

All submissions must include a completed nomination form and one copy of the nominee’s CV (limit: two pages); book awards do not require a CV. Nominations for book and exhibition awards should be for the authors of books published or works exhibited or staged between September 1, 2010, and August 31, 2011. No more than five letters per candidate are considered.

Please read the descriptions of the twelve awards, the names of all past recipients, and the full instructions for nominations. You may also write to Lauren Stark, CAA manager of programs, for more information. Deadline: July 31, 2011, for the Charles Rufus Morey Book Award and the Alfred H. Barr Jr. Award; August 31, 2011, for all others.

Filed under: Annual Conference, Awards, Centennial

CAA invites nominations and self-nominations for individuals to serve on ten of the twelve juries for the annual Awards for Distinction for three years (2011–14). Terms begin in May 2011; award years are 2012–14. CAA’s twelve awards honor artists, art historians, authors, curators, critics, and teachers whose accomplishments transcend their individual disciplines and contribute to the profession as a whole and to the world at large.

Candidates must possess expertise appropriate to the jury’s work and be current CAA members. They should not be serving on another CAA committee or editorial board. CAA’s president and vice president for committees appoint jury members for service.

The following jury vacancies will be filled this spring:

No jury members are needed this year for the Art Journal Award and the CAA/Heritage Preservation Award.

Nominations and self-nominations should include a brief statement (no more than 150 words) outlining the individual’s qualifications and experience and an abbreviated CV (no more than two pages). Please send all materials by email to Lauren Stark, CAA manager of programs; submissions must be sent as Microsoft Word attachments. Deadline: April 15, 2011.

Filed under: Awards, Committees, Governance

The CAA Board of Directors has selected five extraordinary individuals as the distinguished recipients of CAA’s four Centennial Awards in recognition of the extraordinary time and expertise they have contributed to the visual arts in New York and across the nation. The honorees are:

Special guests presenters gave the Centennial Awards during Convocation at the 99th Annual Conference and Centennial Kickoff at the Hilton New York on Wednesday evening, February 9, 2011.

 

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.

CAA is pleased to announce the finalists for the Charles Rufus Morey Book Award and the Alfred H. Barr Jr. Award for 2011. The winners of both prizes, along with the recipients of ten other Awards for Distinction, will be announced in December and presented in February during a special ceremony at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, in conjunction with the 99th Annual Conference and Centennial Kickoff.

The Charles Rufus Morey Book Award honors an especially distinguished book in the history of art, published in any language between September 1, 2009, and August 31, 2010. The four finalists are:

  • Molly Emma Aitken, The Intelligence of Tradition in Rajput Court Painting (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2010)
  • Çiğdem Kafescioğlu, Constantinopolis/Istanbul: Cultural Encounter, Imperial Vision, and the Construction of the Ottoman Capital (University Park: Pennsylvania State University Press, 2009)
  • Juliet Koss, Modernism after Wagner (Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2010)
  • Hui-shu Lee, Empresses, Art, and Agency in Song Dynasty China (Seattle: University of Washington Press, 2010)

The Alfred H. Barr Jr. Award for museum scholarship is presented to the author(s) of an especially distinguished catalogue in the history of art, published between September 1, 2009, and August 31, 2010, under the auspices of a museum, library, or collection. The three finalists are:

  • Mark Laird and Alicia Weisberg-Roberts, eds., Mrs. Delany and Her Circle (New Haven: Yale Center for British Art, in association with Yale University Press, 2009)
  • Darielle Mason, ed., 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)
  • Xiaoneng Yang, ed., Tracing the Past, Drawing the Future: Master Ink Painters in Twentieth-Century China (Milan: 5 Continents, 2010)

The presentation of the 2011 Awards for Distinction will take place on Thursday evening, February 10, 6:00–7:30 PM, in the Grace Rainey Rogers Auditorium at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The event is free and open to the public. The CAA Centennial Reception will follow (ticket required). For more information about CAA’s Awards for Distinction, please contact Lauren Stark, CAA manager of programs, at 212-691-1051, ext. 248.

Filed under: Annual Conference, Awards, Books

The Women’s Caucus for Art (WCA), a CAA affiliated society, has announced the 2011 recipients of its Lifetime Achievement Award: Beverly Buchanan, Diane Burko, Ofelia Garcia, Joan Marter, Carolee Schneemann, and Sylvia Sleigh. In addition, WCA has given the 2011 President’s Art and Activism Award to Maria Torres.

The awards ceremony will be held on Saturday, February 12, 2011, during the annual WCA and CAA conferences in New York. The awards ceremony, free and open to the public, will take place from 6:00 to 7:30 PM in the Beekman/Sutton rooms at the Hilton New York, followed by a ticketed gala from 8:00 to 10:00 PM at the nearby American Folk Art Museum. Called LIVE SPACE, the gala will include a walk-around gourmet dinner with three food stations and an open bar, as well as the opportunity to meet the award recipients, network with attendees, and tour the museum.

Ticket prices for LIVE SPACE are $75 for WCA members and $135 for nonmembers (Prices will increase after January 12). CAA members receive a special price of $120. All tickets include reserved seating at the awards presentation. For more information or to purchase tickets, please visit the WCA website.

Beverly Buchanan

Born in 1940, Beverly Buchanan began creating art at an early age. She received a bachelor’s degree in medical technology from Bennett College in Greensboro, North Carolina, and then earned a master’s of science in parasitology and a master’s of public health degree, both from Columbia University. Rather than pursuing a degree in medicine, she decided to focus on making art. Buchanan studied at the Art Students League before moving to Georgia, where she still lives, dividing her time between there and Michigan. Her early sculptures were poured concrete and stone, and she has since worked in a variety of media, focusing on southern vernacular architecture. Buchanan is the recipient of a John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation fellowship, a Pollock-Krasner Foundation award, and two National Endowment for the Arts fellowships. In addition, she was a Georgia Visual Arts honoree and a recipient of an Anonymous Was a Woman Award, and was honored with a Recognition Award by CAA’s Committee for Women in the Arts in 2005.

Diane Burko

A painter and photographer who resides in Philadelphia and Bucks County, Pennsylvania, Diane Burko has been involved in the feminist movement since the early 1970s. She is a founding member of WCA who also founded and organized the first multivenue feminist citywide art festival in Philadelphia, called “Philadelphia Focuses on Women in the Visual Arts, Past and Present,” also known as “Focus.” After that event, Burko continued her feminist commitment to the present day, serving on the WCA and CAA boards and on the Philadelphia Art Commission. She is now the chair of CAA’s Committee on Women in the Arts. Burko has been recognized with fellowships from the Bellagio Center, the Terra Summer Residency in Giverny, and the National Endowment for the Arts, among many other honors. One of the first movers and shakers in the feminist art movement, Burko has not yet been fully recognized for her important contributions.

Ofelia Garcia

Ofelia Garcia is professor of art at William Paterson University, where she was dean of the College of the Arts and Communication for a decade. She earned her BA at Manhattanville College and her MFA at Tufts University, and was a Kent fellow at Duke University. Garcia has been on the art faculty at Boston College, a critic at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, director of the Print Center in Philadelphia, and president of the Atlanta College of Art and Rosemont College. Also a former president of WCA, Garcia has served on numerous boards, including those of CAA, the American Council on Education, and Haverford College; she was most recently board chair of the Jersey City Museum. Garcia now serves as vice chair of the New Jersey State Council on the Arts, on the Hudson County Art Commission, and on the boards of the Brodsky Center for Innovative Editions and Catholics for Choice.

Joan Marter

Joan Marter is distinguished professor of art history at Rutgers University. She received her PhD from the University of Delaware and has lectured and published widely. She is currently editor-in-chief of The Grove Encyclopedia of American Art, a five-volume reference set forthcoming from Oxford University Press in 2010. Marter serves as editor of Woman’s Art Journal, in print continuously for thirty-one years. She has published monographs on artists such as Alexander Calder and has written extensively about Abstract Expressionism and women artists. In 2004, she was inducted into the Alumni Wall of Fame at the University of Delaware. A former member of the CAA Board of Directors, Marter is currently president of the Dorothy Dehner Foundation for the Visual Arts.

Carolee Schneemann

Carolee Schneemann is a multidisciplinary artist whose radical works in performance art, installation, film, and video are widely influential. The history of her imagery is characterized by research into archaic visual traditions, pleasure wrested from suppressive taboos, and the body of the artist in dynamic relationship with the social body. Her involvement in collaborative groups includes the Judson Dance Theater, Experiments in Art and Technology, and many feminist organizations. Schneemann has exhibited her work at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles, and in New York at the New Museum of Contemporary Art, the Museum of Modern Art, and the Whitney Museum of American Art. Internationally, she has shown at the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía in Madrid, the Moderna Museet in Stockholm, and the Centre George Pompidou in Paris. Her recent multichannel video installation Precarious was presented at Tate Liverpool in September 2009. The Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art at the State University of New York in New Paltz presented a major retrospective in summer 2010.

Sylvia Sleigh

Born in 1916 in Wales, Sylvia Sleigh paints portraits in a realist style, informed by sources ranging from the Pre-Raphaelites to famous portraits throughout history. Her first solo exhibition was held in 1953 at the Kensington Art Gallery; her most recent, at I-20 Gallery in New York, closed in January 2010. She married the art critic Lawrence Alloway in 1954, with whom she became part of the London avant-garde. They later moved to the United States, where she continued painting and showing her work. In 1970, Sleigh became actively involved in feminism and started painting life-size nudes in her precise, realist style. She was active in many of the first women-artist-run galleries, including A.I.R. Gallery and Soho 20. Her work can be found in numerous major public and private collections. Sleigh was honored with CAA’s Distinguished Artist Award for Lifetime Achievement in 2008.

Maria Torres

Winner of the 2011 Presidents Art and Activism Award is Maria Torres, president and chief operations officer of the Point Community Development Corporation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to youth development and the cultural and economic revitalization of the Hunts Point section of the South Bronx in New York. The Point’s mission is to encourage the arts, local enterprise, responsible ecology, and “self-investment” in a community traditionally defined in terms of its poverty, crime rate, poor schools, and substandard housing. In 1993, Torres received a BS from Cornell University. That same year, she launched the Neighborhood Internship Bank for at-risk youth, the first employment service of its kind in the South Bronx, and established La Marqueta, an outdoor community market aimed at lowering the barriers to the marketplace for neighborhood entrepreneurs. In 1994, Torres worked with Paul Lipson, Mildred Ruiz, and Steven Sapp to found the Point. Recipient of Union Square Award in 1998, she served on the Board of the Bronx Charter School for the Arts from 2002 to 2009.

About the Awards

The WCA Lifetime Achievement Awards were first presented in 1979 in President Jimmy Carter’s Oval Office to Isabel Bishop, Selma Burke, Alice Neel, Louise Nevelson, and Georgia O’Keeffe. Past honorees have represented the full range of distinguished achievement in the visual arts, and this year’s awardees are no exception, with considerable accomplishments and contributions represented by their professional efforts.

For CAA’s Centennial Conference in 2011, recognize someone who has made extraordinary contributions to the fields of art and art history by nominating him or her for one of twelve Awards for Distinction. Award juries consider your personal letters of recommendation when making their selections. In the letter, state who you are; how you know (of) the nominee; how the nominee and/or his or her work or publication has affected your practice or studies and the pursuit of your career; and why you think this person (or, in a collaboration, these people) deserves to be recognized.

You should also contact five to ten colleagues, students, peers, collaborators, and/or coworkers of the nominee to write letters. The different perspectives and anecdotes from multiple letters of nomination provide juries with a clearer picture of the qualities and attributes of the candidates.

All nomination campaigns should include one copy of the nominee’s CV (limit: two pages). Nominations for book and exhibition awards should be for authors of books published or works exhibited or staged between September 1, 2009, and August 31, 2010. No more than ten letters per candidate are considered.

Please read descriptions of all twelve awards and see past recipients. Detailed instructions for nominations are available. You may also write to Lauren Stark, CAA manager of programs, for more information. Deadline: July 31, 2010, for the Morey and Barr Awards; August 31, 2010, for all others.

Image: Barkley L. Hendricks accepts the 2010 Artist Award for Distinguished Body of Work at the Annual Conference in Chicago (photograph by Bradley Marks)

Filed under: Annual Conference, Awards, Centennial