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Sam Hunter: In Memoriam

posted by July 30, 2014

David E. Nathan is the author of this obituary.

Sam Hunter, the founding director of the Rose Art Museum, whose keen insights into the art of his day allowed him to build the museum’s acclaimed collection of modern and contemporary art, died on July 27, 2014, in Princeton, New Jersey. He was 91.

Financed by a $50,000 gift from Leon Mnuchin and his wife, Harriet Gevirtz-Mnuchin, Hunter made acquisitions in the early 1960s that established the Rose as a major force in the art world. The works he collected, masterpieces by Jasper Johns, Robert Rauschenberg, Roy Lichtenstein, Andy Warhol, and other leading artists, form the core of the Rose’s beloved collection and continue to set the tone for the museum’s collecting and exhibition practices.

“Sam Hunter played an integral role in the early days of the Rose Art Museum, and his prescient purchases propelled the museum into the consciousness of the art world just a few years after its founding,” said Frederick M. Lawrence, president of Brandeis University. “The way in which he built the early collection, a discrete number of outstanding acquisitions, none for more than $5,000, is one of the iconic stories of the early years of Brandeis University. His impact on the Rose in particular and the university in general continues to this day.”

Hunter came to Brandeis in 1960 as director of the Poses Institute of Fine Arts, and shortly thereafter become the first director of the Rose. Organizers of the 1962 World’s Fair in Seattle approached him about curating an exhibition for the Fine Arts Pavilion. The resulting collection of 114 works from 87 artists, including many by artists whose work he would later purchase for the Rose, was subsequently displayed at Brandeis.

In late 1962, Mnuchin called from New York to announce that he and his wife had inherited $50,000, which they wished to donate to the Rose to fund a contemporary art collection. Hunter and Mnuchin immediately began exploring the galleries of New York, often with Robert Scull, a friend of Mnuchin and a prominent collector of Pop art.

“The guiding principle of the selection was individual quality rather than tendency,” Hunter wrote for the brochure accompanying the collection’s exhibition. “As a matter of policy, the collection focused on younger artists with only a token representation of the older generation…. Abstract Expressionism is the collection’s point of departure, taken at a point of subtle but significant transition.”

Although Hunter and Mnuchin set a limit of $5,000 per painting, they managed to gather early and important works by Claes Oldenburg, Jim Dine, Tom Wesselmann, James Rosenquist, Adolph Gottlieb, Robert Indiana, Ellsworth Kelly, Marisol, Morris Louis, Johns, Rauschenberg, Lichtenstein, Warhol, and many others.

“It is very difficult to imagine a more significant founding director than Sam Hunter has proved to be,” said Christopher Bedford, the Henry and Lois Foster Director of the Rose. “Just as Brandeis established its academic reputation with incredible rapidity, so Sam made sure the same happened to the Rose through the acquisitions he made and the exhibitions he organized. The status we enjoy today is in large part due to his vision in the 1960s.”

Bedford also pointed out that Hunter was a towering figure in both curatorial and academic spheres. “He had one foot in the world of museums and one foot in the world of scholarship, a model for how the Rose thinks of itself today,” he said. “He was as much a director/curator as he was a scholar, and that dual commitment continues to represent the Rose in the work we do today.”

Upon learning of Hunter’s death, Bedford decided to name the Rose’s newly established emerging artists fund in his memory. “The fund lacked a name,” Bedford said, “and today it became very apparent what the name of the fund should be. It seems incongruous to apply this term today, but the Gevirtz-Mnuchin fund was an emerging artists fund in the early 1960s: Roy Lichtenstein, Jasper Johns, and Ellsworth Kelly were the emerging artists of their day. It’s only just that we would perpetuate Hunter’s legacy with a fund that boasts his name.”

A native of Springfield, Massachusetts, Hunter graduated from Williams College in 1943. He served in the United States Navy from 1943 to 1946, rising to the rank of lieutenant junior grade and receiving five battle stars.

Hunter began his professional art career in 1947, when he joined the New York Times as an art critic for a two-year stint. He studied at the University of Florence through the Hubbard Hutchinson Fellowship, earning a certificate of studies in 1951. He spent a year as an editor with art publisher Harry N. Abrams before serving as editor of Arts magazine.

In 1955, Hunter was appointed associate professor of art history at the University of California, Los Angeles, but left in 1956 to become curator of painting and sculpture at the Museum of Modern Art in New York. Two years later, he moved to the Minneapolis Institute of Arts as chief curator and acting director.

After leaving Brandeis in 1965, he was appointed director of the Jewish Museum and lectured as a visiting professor at Cornell University. In 1969, he became professor of art history at Princeton University and curator of modern art at the university’s art museum. He retired from Princeton as professor emeritus in 1991.

Hunter is survived by his wife, Maïa; their son, Harry; two daughters, Emmy and Alexa, from his previous marriage to Edys Merrill; and one grandchild, Isabella. A funeral service was scheduled for July 30 in the Princeton University Chapel.

Filed under: Obituaries

Each week CAA News publishes summaries of eight articles, published around the web, that CAA members may find interesting and useful in their professional and creative lives.

Postdoctoral Fellowships in the Humanities at Universities and Research Institutes in the US and Germany

The Volkswagen Foundation aims to strengthen transatlantic academic relations, especially in the field of the humanities, via a funding initiative called Postdoctoral Fellowships in the Humanities at Universities and Research Institutes in Germany and the USA. For this project, Volkswagen will work closely with the New York–based Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. (Read more from Volkswagen Stiftung.)

Report for Detroit Creditor Nearly Doubles Value of DIA Collection at $8.5 Billion

A new report analyzing the collection at the Detroit Institute of Arts almost doubles the previous estimates of what the works are worth, putting their value at $8.5 billion. The new fifty-page assessment, a copy of which was obtained by the Detroit News, was prepared in just two weeks by the appraiser Victor Wiener of New York’s Victor Wiener Associates. (Read more from the Detroit News.)

Fame, Fortune, and the Female Artist

I have collected art, and been involved with artists and the art world, for almost fifty years. Through all that time, I have wondered why female artists have less success, fewer exhibitions, and less attention than male artists. I own works by women artists; it is hard for me to see, literally to see, how women and men differ in the quality of their work. Why are women artists less known and less admired? (Read more from the Huffington Post.)

Vernacular Criticism

Yelp does a lot of things, including a number of things that make people hate it. But one thing it does is provide a platform for vernacular art criticism, a different kind of writing about art and the public spaces where it is seen. Vernacular criticism can reject the guidelines set by cultivated artistic tastes, or it can guilelessly speak in ignorance of them, or in its naïve fascination with them can inadvertently expose their falseness. (Read more from the New Inquiry.)

Are MFAs Ruining Art?

This summer has seen another bumper year of MA and MFA students. As ever, the work coming from international art schools is good, bad, and everywhere in between. There is also an increasing professionalization of the artists coming from the academic system. Degree-show presentations can resemble solo booths at art fairs. Often the work presented is ready to slip immediately into the gallery system. The question remains: Is this a good thing? (Read more from Artsy.)

Spotting a Bad Adviser—and How to Pick a Good One

Universities have a lot of names for the professor who works with a graduate student on a thesis or dissertation and later signs off on it. The main titles are “adviser,” “director,” and, more rarely, “sponsor.” Some universities, including my own, call a professor in this position a “mentor.” I like “adviser” because I think that’s the best description of the job when it’s being done well. (Read more from the Chronicle of Higher Education.)

Low Pay, Monotonous Work: Are Artist Assistant Positions Worth the Trouble?

In the course of a normal workday, Sharela Bonfield may order supplies, supervise interns, clean, answer the telephone, arrange meetings, create PowerPoint displays, handle paperwork, administer archives, and do “whatever else needs to be done.” It is difficult to say exactly what Bonfield’s job actually is, because she has so many responsibilities, but her title is clear enough: artist’s assistant. (Read more from Gallerist.)

I Didn’t Get the Job. Can I Ask Why?

If you made it to the campus-visit stage, then yes, in my opinion, you can contact the search-committee chair or department chair and ask for some feedback on your candidacy. But there’s a caveat: you have to stick to general, nondesperate sorts of questions. Questions like: “I would like to ask if you can provide any feedback on my materials or visit that would provide insight as I move forward in my job search.” (Read more from Vitae.)

Filed under: CAA News

Recent Deaths in the Arts

posted by July 25, 2014

In its periodic list of obituaries, CAA recognizes the lives and achievements of the following artists, historians, teachers, curators, dealers, philanthropists, and others whose work has significantly influenced the visual arts. Of special note is a text on a distinguished scholar of nineteenth- and early-twentieth-century Russian art, Grigorii Iurevich Sternin.

  • Roger Ackling, a British sculptor who was a contemporary of Richard Long, Hamish Fulton, and other artists who graduated from Saint Martins School of Art in the 1960s, died on June 5, 2014. He was 66 years old
  • Jack Agüeros, a writer, activist, and the former director of El Museo del Barrio in New York, died on May 4, 2014. He was 79
  • Eppie Archuleta, a New Mexican weaver who worked in fiber and fabric, passed away on April 11, 2014, age 92. In 1985 she received a National Heritage Fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts, the nation’s highest honor in the folk and traditional arts
  • Gordon Bennett, a pioneering Australian artist whose work challenged race, power, history, and social conventions, died on June 3, 2014. He was 58 years old
  • Tito Enrique Canepa Jiménez, a Dominican painter who lived and worked in New York after immigrating there in the 1930s, died on February 11, 2014. He was 97
  • Lynne Cohen, an award-winning Canadian photographer who had taught at the University of Ottawa from 1974 to 2005, passed away on May 12, 2014. She was 69
  • Deborah Deery, an art educator and academic administrator at Moore College of Art and Design, died on August 19, 2013. She was 49 years old
  • Joseph Doyle, an artist and teacher based in Houston, Texas, died on July 9, 2014, at age 54
  • Lee MacCormick Edwards, a philanthropist as well as a lecturer in art history, a photographer, and an author, passed away on April 19, 2014. She was 76
  • John Clovis Fontaine, chairman emeritus for both the Samuel H. Kress Foundation and the National Gallery of Art in Washington, DC, died on September 23, 2013. He was 81 years old
  • Edythe Goodridge, a curator and the former director of visual arts for the Canada Council, died on June 4, 2014. She was 77
  • Cornelius Gurlitt, the son of a Nazi art dealer who secretly hoarded millions of dollars’ worth of modern art for decades, died on May 6, 2014. He was 81
  • Anne Hollander, a celebrated author and a historian of fashion and costume, died on July 6, 2014. She was 83 years old
  • Hans Hollein, an Austrian architect and educator who won the Pritzker Prize in 1985, passed away on April 24, 2014. He was 80
  • On Kawara, a Conceptual artist and painter whose work addressed the passage of time, died in late June 2014. He was 81 years old
  • Maria Lassnig, an Austrian figurative painter whose retrospective is on view at MoMA PS1, died on May 6, 2014, age 94
  • Stanley Marsh, an eccentric Texan millionare who commissioned the Cadillac Ranch outside Amarillo, died on June 17, 2014. He was 76
  • Cynthia Mills, the executive editor of the Smithsonian Institution’s journal American Art, died on May 1, 2014. She was 67 years old
  • Robert Olsen, a Los Angeles–based painter of outdoor urban scenes, died on April 14, 2014. He was 44.
  • Jennifer Wynne Reeves, an abstract painter based in New York, passed away on June 22, 2014. She was 51
  • Nan Rosenthal, a curator for the National Gallery of Art and the Metropolitan Museum of Art, died on April 27, 2014, at the age of 76
  • Jerry Rothman, a Los Angeles–based sculptor who was a member of a ceramics movement called Otis Clay, died on June 5, 2014, at age 80
  • Frederic Schwartz, an architect, city planner, and the designer of several memorials for September 11, died on April 28, 2014. He was 63
  • Claude Simard, a cofounder and director of Jack Shainman Gallery in New York, died on June 24, 2014, at the age of 57. Simard was also an artist and performer
  • Grigorii Iurevich Sternin, a distinguished scholar of nineteenth- and early-twentieth-century Russian art, died on November 23, 2013, age 86. CAA has published a special text on Sternin
  • Massimi Vignelli, an Italian-born graphic designer who created the 1970s map for New York’s subway system, died on May 27, 2014. He was 83
  • Ultra Violet, an artist, actor, author, and Andy Warhol superstar, passed away on June 14, 2014. She was 78
  • Melvin J. Wachowiak Jr., a senior conservator for the Smithsonian Institution’s Museum Conservation Institute, died on May 28, 2014. He was 56
  • Khin Maung Yin, an influential modernist Burmese artist who painted colorful portraits, passed away on June 10, 2014, age 76

Read all past obituaries in the arts in CAA News, which include special texts written for CAA. Please send links to published obituaries, or your completed texts, to Christopher Howard, CAA managing editor, for the next list.

Filed under: Obituaries, People in the News

Each week CAA News publishes summaries of eight articles, published around the web, that CAA members may find interesting and useful in their professional and creative lives.

Artist Resale Rights Gain Support in US Congress

A bill that would bring droit de suite, also known as artist resale royalty rights, to the United States is gaining momentum in Congress. The bill has gained six cosponsors in the past three weeks, including Representatives Sam Farr of California and Janice Schakowsky of Illinois. (Read more from the Art Newspaper.)

Arts Companies Must Adapt to Changes at Facebook, Report Reveals

For some time now, marketers in the arts and culture sector have been worrying that updates to Facebook have resulted in their messages reaching fewer and fewer people. A new report released by the digital consultancy firm One Further reveals that these fears are justified and that a new approach to Facebook page management may be necessary. However, it’s not all doom and gloom: opportunities still exist, and arts marketers are adapting accordingly. (Read more from the Guardian.)

Revise and Resubmit!

I’m sure you’ve heard the adage “publish or perish.” In order to get tenure—or, as the abysmal job market begets hyperprofessionalization, to be considered for a job at all—a scholar must have a certain amount of articles appear in “peer-reviewed” academic journals. These journals—Obscure Subfield Quarterly, One-Word Pretentious Greek Thing, etc.—usually have a circulation of about three hundred, and those articles upon which careers depend are usually read by exactly three people. (Read more from Slate.)

How Abstract Art Can Change the Way You See Waste and Consumption in America

Abstract artwork is sometimes misinterpreted as being flatly indiscernible, when in fact it’s often simply enchanting and destabilizing, requiring a moment of contemplation from the viewer. This exhibition seeks not only to demystify abstract art but also consumption, a term that, despite its looming unwieldy aura, can be combatted in the comforts of your home, and in the confines of your humble garbage bin. (Read more from Huffington Post.)

How Much Are Curators Really Paid?

Many in the art world were staggered by recent reports that the Italian curator Germano Celant is being paid €750,000 to organize a pavilion for the Milan Expo 2015. Celant’s fee—and the incredulity it provoked—raises questions about how much curators are typically paid for organizing biennials and large-scale international exhibitions. (Read more from the Art Newspaper.)

The Digital Art Historian’s Toolkit

Lists of tools like this one invariably age poorly. For an always-up-to-date, much more comprehensive list of useful digital tools, see the excellent DiRT Directory. However, we felt it might be useful to our participants to have a snapshot of tools that could be useful to art historians specifically. We’ve focused here on free, off-the-shelf tools that don’t require programming knowledge and might be particularly interesting to people who work with a lot of images. (Read more from Beyond the Digital Slide Library.)

Blaming the Victim: Ladder Faculty and the Lack of Adjunct Activism

The adjunct labor movement has necessarily prioritized the working conditions of part-time faculty, many of whom are living below the poverty line. But adjuncts need not be card-carrying union members to benefit from these victories, which have transformed academia’s once-invisible underclass into its most vocal majority. The inequalities in academic employment may still be firmly in place, but thanks to these unionization efforts, contingent faculty are now active participants in the national conversation about the future of higher education. (Read more from Vitae.)

A Banker, a Scholar, and the Invention of Art History: The Story of the Warburg Brothers

Emily J. Levine’s new book details the contradictions and confusions of Jewish life in Hamburg, with ancient religious traditions vying with modern currents of thought, and ancient caution competing with tentative hopes when Jews at last began to breach the barriers of anti-Semitism in German society. Focusing on Aby Warburg’s library and two of its most illustrious users, the philosopher Ernst Cassirer and the art historian Erwin Panofsky, she reveals the ways in which the distinctive qualities of a single place conditioned the development of ideas in a larger sense to create a “Hamburg School” of thought, a school intimately connected with Jewish experience in Imperial and Weimar Germany. (Read more from the New Republic.)

Filed under: CAA News

CAA has begun accepting nominations for the 2015 Awards for Distinction, which will be announced in January and presented at the 103rd Annual Conference, taking place February 11–14, 2015, in New York. Please review the guidelines below to familiarize yourself with the nomination process and to download, complete, and submit the requested materials. Deadline: July 31, 2014, for the Charles Rufus Morey Book Award and the Alfred H. Barr Jr. Awards; August 31, 2014, for all others.

General Guidelines

In your 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. We also urge you to contact up to five colleagues, students, peers, collaborators, and/or coworkers of the nominee to write letters; no more than five letters are considered. Letters of support are important for reference, but the awards decisions are the responsibilities of the juries based on their expert assessment of the qualifications of the nominees.

Nominations for book and exhibition awards should be for authors of books published or works exhibited or staged between September 1, 2013, and August 31, 2014. Books published posthumously are not eligible. Letters of support are not required for the Morey and Barr awards. All submissions must include a completed 2015 nomination form and one copy of the nominee’s CV (limit: two pages); book-award nominations do not require a CV (see below for the appropriate forms for the Morey and Barr awards and the Porter Prize).

Charles Rufus Morey Book Award

To give the jury full opportunity to evaluate each submission fairly, submit materials well before the deadline. Please review the following nomination guidelines:

  • A publisher may submit no more than five titles. In addition, CAA accepts nominations from its membership, jury members, reviews editors for The Art Bulletin and Art Journal, and field editors from
  • Publishers may not submit the same title for the Morey and Barr awards. The Morey jury does not accept exhibition catalogues
  • Eligible books must have been published between September 1, 2013, and August 31, 2014
  • Books published posthumously are not eligible
  • CAA and each jury member must receive a copy of the nominated book. A total of six copies of the book must be sent. To receive the mailing addresses for the jury, please contact Lauren Stark, CAA manager of programs
  • Complete and submit the Morey nominaton form
  • Letters of support are not required

Alfred H. Barr Jr. Award

To give the jury full opportunity to evaluate each submission fairly, submit materials well before the deadline. Please review the following nomination guidelines:

  • A publisher may submit no more than five titles. In addition, CAA accepts nominations from its membership, jury members, reviews editors for The Art Bulletin and Art Journal, and field editors from
  • Publishers may not submit the same title for the Morey and Barr awards. The Morey jury does not accept exhibition catalogues
  • Eligible books must have been published between September 1, 2013, and August 31, 2014
  • Books published posthumously are not eligible
  • CAA and each jury member must receive a copy of the nominated book. A total of six copies of the book must be sent. To receive the mailing addresses for the jury, please contact Lauren Stark, CAA manager of programs
  • Complete and submit the Barr nomination form
  • Letters of support are not required

Arthur Kingsley Porter Prize

To determine eligibility, authors of articles in The Art Bulletin must complete the Porter nomination form.

Frank Jewett Mather Award

Please submit copies of critical writings, which may be website links and printouts, photocopies or scanned pages of newspapers or magazines, and more. If the writing is contained in a single volume (such as a book), please provide the publication information.

Distinguished Teaching of Art and Art History Awards

Letters for these two awards are particularly important for the juries because of the personal contact involved in successful teaching.


Please write to Lauren Stark, CAA manager of programs, for more information about the nomination process. Visit the Awards section of the CAA website to learn more about the individual awards.

The June 2014 issue of The Art Bulletin, the leading publication of international art-historical scholarship, leads off with an essay by Parul Dave Mukherji, who explores the promise of postethnic art history in “Whither Art History in a Globalizing World.”

Also in the June issue, Hallie Franks investigates domestic mosaics in ancient Greece through travel metaphors associated with the symposium. In “Casts, Imprints, and the Deathliness of Things,” Marcia Pointon examines the materiality of death masks produced in eighteenth- and nineteenth-century Europe to excavate their meanings, past and present. Next, Sugata Ray analyzes the architecture of the 1887 Jaipur Economic and Industrial Museum as destabilizing the imperial aspirations of colonial museology. Finally, Joseph Siry considers how Frank Lloyd Wright’s Kalita Humphreys Theater in Dallas realized the architect’s ambition to rethink the ideal building form for drama.

In the Reviews section, Wei-Cheng Lin considers Megan E. O’Neil’s book Engaging Ancient Maya Sculpture at Piedras Negras, Guatemala, Paul Barolsky reviews Michael W. Cole’s study Ambitious Forms: Giambologna, Ammanati, and Danti in Florence, and Joanne Rappaport examines Daniela Bleichmar’s Visible Empire: Botanical Expeditions and Visual Culture in the Hispanic Enlightenment.

CAA sends The Art Bulletin to all institutional members and to those individuals who choose to receive the journal as a benefit of their membership. The digital version at Taylor & Francis Online is currently available to all CAA individual members.

The next issue of the quarterly publication, to appear in September 2014, will feature a third “Whither Art History?” piece, by Claudia Valladão de Mattos, and essays on the memorializing function of Jan van Eyck’s van der Paele Virgin, the moral and phenomenological implications of a monstrous visage in Hans Burgkmair’s Crucifixion, modern interiority in Watteau’s fêtes galantes, and several exhibitions associated with the Festival of India in the United States. The issue will also include reviews on painting in early modern Japan, photography in nineteenth-century India, and the politics and power of Mughal architecture.

The CAA 104th Annual Conference will take place February 3–6, 2016, in Washington, DC. The Annual Conference Committee invites session proposals that cover the breadth of current thought and research in art, art and architectural history, theory and criticism, pedagogical issues, museum and curatorial practice, conservation, and developments in technology. Deadline: Friday, September 12, 2014.

In order to submit a proposal, you must be a current CAA member. For full details on the submission process for the conference, please review the information published below.

Open Formats

This category encourages experimental and alternative formats that transcend the traditional panel, with presentations whose content extends to serve the areas of contemporary issues, studio art, historical studies, and educational and professional practices. Proposals may experiment with session hierarchies, length, technology, and modes of participation. Open Formats are the only sessions that may be preformed, with participants chosen in advance by session chairs. These sessions require advance planning by the chair.

Historical Studies

This category broadly embraces all art-historical proposals up to the third quarter of the twentieth century. Historical Studies session proposals may not be submitted as preformed panels with a list of speakers.

Contemporary Issues/Studio Art

This category is intended for studio-art proposals, as well as those concerned with contemporary art and theory, criticism, and visual culture. Contemporary Issues/Studio Art session proposals may not be submitted as preformed panels with a list of speakers.

Educational and Professional Practices

This category pertains to session proposals that develop along more practical lines and address the educational and professional concerns of CAA members as teachers, practicing artists and critics, or museum curators. Educational and Professional Practices session proposals may not be submitted as preformed panels with a list of speakers.

Affiliated Societies

Each CAA affiliated society may submit one proposal that follows the guidelines outlined b elow. A letter of support from the society or committee must accompany the submission. The Annual Conference Committee considers it, along with the other submissions, on the basis of merit.


Each CAA committee may submit one proposal that follows the guidelines outlined below. A letter of support from the society or committee must accompany the submission. The Annual Conference Committee considers it, along with the other submissions, on the basis of merit.

Proposal Submission Guidelines

All session proposals are completed and submitted online; paper forms and postal mailings are not required. Prospective chairs must include the following in their proposal:

  • The Annual Conference Committee considers proposals from individual CAA members only. Once selected, session chairs must remain current members through 2016. No one may chair a session more than once in a three-year period. (That is, individuals who chaired sessions in 2014 or 2015 may not chair a session in 2016.) The committee seeks topics that have not been addressed in recent conferences or areas that have traditionally been underrepresented as well as formats that explore new modes of dialogue
  • A completed session proposal made through an online database
  • If you have prior approval from a CAA affiliated society or committee to submit an application for a sponsored session, an official letter of support from the society or committee uploaded as a PDF or Word file. If you are not submitting an application for a sponsored session, please skip this step
  • Your CV and, if applicable, the CV of your cochair; no more than two pages in length each, uploaded as a PDF or Word file (both CVs in one document)

The committee makes its selection solely on the basis of merit. Where proposals overlap, CAA reserves the right to select the most considered version or, in some cases, to suggest a fusion of two or more versions from among the proposals submitted. The submission process must be completed online. Deadline: Friday, September 12, 2014.

General Proposal Information

The process of fashioning the conference is a delicate balancing act. The 2016 program is shaped by four broad submission categories: Open Formats, Historical Studies, Contemporary Issues/Studio Art, and Educational and Professional Practices. Also included in the mix are sessions by CAA’s affiliated societies and committees.

The Annual Conference Committee welcomes session proposals from established artists and scholars, along with those from younger scholars, emerging and midcareer artists, and graduate students. Particularly welcome are proposals that highlight interdisciplinary work. Artists are especially encouraged to propose sessions appropriate to dialogue and information exchange relevant to artists.

Sessions selected by the Annual Conference Committee for the 2016 conference are considered regular program sessions; that is, they are 2½-hours long, are scheduled during the eight regular program time slots during the four days of the conference, and require a conference badge for admission. With the exception of the Open Formats category, CAA session proposals may not be submitted as preformed panels with a list of speakers. Proposals for papers for the 2016 conference are solicited through the 2016 Call for Participation, to be published in March 2015.


For more information about session proposals for the 2016 Annual Conference in Washington, DC, please contact Lauren Stark, CAA manager of programs, at 212-392-4405.

Filed under: Annual Conference

Each week CAA News publishes summaries of eight articles, published around the web, that CAA members may find interesting and useful in their professional and creative lives.

Art History That! A Manifesto for the Future of a Discipline

The future of art history has much to offer and much at stake. Recent references to the discipline in popular media have encouraged a critical assessment of the so-called humanities crisis, revealing it to be a red herring for the more systemic ailments that afflict higher education. Art history has a role to play in changing the conversation about the arts and humanities in society as a whole. In an effort to spur this change, this essay describes and contextualizes Art History That, a crowd-sourced manifesto for the future of the discipline. (Read more from Visual Resources.)

Detroit’s Art May Be Worth Billions, Report Says

A new expert appraisal of the Detroit Institute of Arts’ collection, which some creditors are demanding be sold to help pay municipal debts in the city’s bankruptcy case, has found that the works could be worth $2.7 to $4.6 billion. The appraisal, commissioned by the city and the museum in advance of a federal bankruptcy trial in August, also added that such a price tag would never be attained at sale, for reasons including donor lawsuits that would delay or prevent the sale of many valuable works, weakness in the market for some kinds of paintings, and lower sale prices because of the sheer bulk that would flood into the market at once. (Read more from the New York Times.)

After Decades in Storage, Damaged Rothko Murals Get High-Tech Restoration

Paintings by Mark Rothko are highly coveted—in May one of his works sold at auction in London for $50 million. But oddly enough, Harvard University has had a handful of Rothkos—faded by sunlight and splattered with food and drink—in storage. Now, new technology has led to a potentially controversial restoration. (Read more from National Public Radio.)

Scholarly Journal Retracts Sixty Articles, Smashes “Peer Review Ring”

Every now and then a scholarly journal retracts an article because of errors or outright fraud. In academic circles, and sometimes beyond, each retraction is a big deal. Now comes word of a journal retracting sixty articles at once. The reason for the mass retraction is mind-blowing: a “peer review and citation ring” was apparently rigging the review process to get articles published. (Read more from the Washington Post.)

Confronting Art-World Sexism

In New York, Sperone Westwater comes in at 91 versus 9. Team Gallery at 85 versus 15, Matthew Marks at 84 versus 16, and Mary Boone at 83 versus 17. Some of the top galleries in Los Angeles tell a similar story: Blum and Poe is 89 versus 11; Prism is 88 versus 12; Thomas Solomon is 85 to 15, and Patrick Painter is 83 to 17. These numbers, as you might have guessed, reflect the percentages of male versus female artists represented by each gallery. They’re also the impetus for a new internet-driven, open-source feminist art project, Gallery Tally, organized by the Los Angeles artist and educator Micol Hebron. (Read more from the Art Newspaper.)

Why the World’s Most Talked-About New Art Dealer Is Instagram

Standing before Marc Quinn’s looming Myth Venus sculpture in front of Christie’s Rockefeller headquarters was a masked protester holding a large poster that read F*** U. It was a parody of Wade Guyton’s 2005 Untitled that sold for $3.52 million just hours later at the live-streamed “If I Live I’ll See You Tuesday” auction, which included thirty-five contemporary artworks from blue-chip names such as Richard Prince, Jeff Koons, Martin Kippenberger, and Alex Israel, all handpicked by the contemporary art expert Loic Gouzer, with the majority of the production on his—and Christie’s—Instagram accounts. (Read more from Vogue.)

Help Desk: Friends with Benefits

A few months ago I tried to collaborate with a good friend, but we didn’t complete any work. It’s not that we spent the time just hanging out—we worked, but it just didn’t go anywhere. But I really like my friend’s work and think that we could make something great together. Should we try again? If we do, how can we make something happen? (Read more from Daily Serving.)

Room for Creativity?

“Room for Creativity?” raises the question of how adjuncts try to balance their own creative and/or scholarly interests with teaching demands. I asked the participants—two English professors—to cover how they’ve both balanced (or tried to balance) their interests in poetry and other creative work with what they’ve been allowed as adjuncts to teach in the name of “course coverage.” (Read more from Inside Higher Ed.)

Filed under: CAA News

Yesterday, Congressman Jerrold Nadler (NY-10), the Ranking Member of the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Courts, Intellectual Property and the Internet, delivered an opening statement at the subcommittee’s hearing of “Moral Rights, Termination Rights, Resale Royalty, and Copyright Term.” Congressman Nadler introduced the American Royalties Too (ART) Act, which will be discussed at the hearing, in order to ensure visual artists are compensated when their original artwork is resold.  His legislation would bring fairness to American artists who, unlike their fellow visual artists in 70 countries, do not receive any compensation when their works are resold at public auction.

“I firmly believe that the time has come for us to establish a resale royalty right here in the United States.  By adopting a resale royalty, the United States would join the rest of the world in recognizing this important right.  The ART act would ensure that American artists also benefit whenever and wherever their works are sold, whether in New York, London, or Paris,” said Congressman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY). “I thank Chairman Coble and Chairman Goodlatte for including this issue as part of the Subcommittee’s review of the Copyright Act.”

The following is the full text of Congressman Nadler’s opening statement (as prepared for delivery):

“Today we consider a broad range of existing legal protections for artists and creators, including the moral rights of attribution and integrity, the right to terminate a transfer or license of one’s works, and the copyright term.  Congress has taken some steps to address these issues, and I welcome this opportunity to hear from our witnesses about how our current laws are working and what, if any, changes might be necessary and appropriate.

“I also welcome this chance to examine resale royalties for visual artists.  To date, Congress has failed to adopt a resale royalty right, which would grant visual artists a percentage of the proceeds each time their work is resold.  Unlike other artists – including, for example, songwriters and performing artists who may receive some royalties whenever their works are reproduced or performed – our visual artists currently benefit only from the original sale of their artwork.  This means that the artist receives no part of the long-term financial success of a work.  For example, if a young artist sells a work of art for $500 at the beginning of his or her career, and the same work is later sold for $50,000, the original artist gets nothing.  It is the purchaser, not the artist, who benefits whenever the value of the artist’s work increases.

“The Berne Convention, to which the United States is a signatory, makes adoption of the resale royalty right optional, but does not allow artists in any country that fails to adopt this right to benefit from resale royalties in any other country.  Because we do not provide this right, U.S. artists are prevented from recovering any royalties generated from the resale of their works in countries that have resale rights.

“Seventy other countries now provide this right, including the entire European Union.

“Concerned about this lack of fairness for American artists, I have introduced a bill – H.R. 4103, the American Royalties Too (or ART) Act – to correct this deficiency, and injustice, in the law.  The ART Act provides for a resale royalty of 5 percent to be paid to the artist for every work of visual art sold for more than $5,000 at public auction.  The royalty would be capped at $35,000 for works of art that sell for more than $700,000.  The royalty right is limited to works of fine art that are not created for the purpose of mass reproduction.  Covered artworks include paintings, drawings, prints, sculpture, and photographs in the original embodiment or in a limited edition.  Small auction houses with annual sales of less than $1 million are exempt.

“I firmly believe that the time has come for us to establish a resale royalty right here in the United States.  I am not alone in this belief.  The national arts advocacy organization Americans for the Arts supports this legislation.  So does the Visual Artists’ Rights Coalition (VARC), which includes the Artists Rights Society, the Visual Artists and Galleries Association, the American Society of Illustrators Partnership, the National Cartoonists Society, the Association of American Editorial Cartoonists, and the Association of Medical Illustrators, among others.

“The United States Copyright Office, which once opposed adopting a resale royalty right, also now supports “Congressional consideration of a resale royalty right, or droit de suite, which would give artists a percentage of the amount paid for a work each time it is resold by another party.”  In its report in December of last year – Resale Royalties:  An Updated Analysis – the Copyright Office observed that visual artists operate at a disadvantage relative to other artists.  It also noted that many more countries had adopted resale royalty laws since its 1992 report recommending against adoption of this right, and that the adverse market effects it feared might result from resale royalty laws have not materialized.

“I welcome and look forward to hearing more from Karyn Claggett, Associate Register of Copyrights and Director of Policy and International Affairs, who is testifying on resale royalty on behalf of the Copyright Office at the hearing today.

“By adopting a resale royalty, the United States would join the rest of the world in recognizing this important right.  And because these other countries have reciprocal agreements, they would then pay U.S. artists for works resold in their countries.  This would ensure that, in addition to resale royalties for works resold in this country, American artists would also benefit whenever and wherever their works are sold, whether in New York, London, or Paris.

“Serious consideration of a resale royalty right is long overdue, and I thank Chairman Coble and Chairman Goodlatte for including this issue as part of the Subcommittee’s review of the Copyright Act.

“With that, I look forward to hearing from our witnesses and yield back the balance of my time.”

Arts Action Fund Breaking News 7-15-14

posted by July 15, 2014

The following email from Nina Ozlu Tunceli, executive director of Americans for the Arts, was sent on Tuesday, July 15, 2014.

Arts Action Fund Breaking News 7-15-14

Once again, your advocacy voices made a difference. Last week, thousands of Arts Action Fund members sent letters to their Members of Congress in response to action taken by the House Subcommittee on the Interior. The Subcommittee had proposed an $8 million cut each from the FY 2015 budgets of the National Endowment of the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities.

We’re really pleased to report that when this bill came before the Full Appropriations Committee today, the Interior Subcommittee Chairman Ken Calvert (R-CA) announced that he had made some “manager’s amendments” to the bill. He restored the cuts to the two federal cultural agencies and now the bill moves to the House floor with a $146 million recommendation for the NEA and NEH each.