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CAA News Today

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.

An Interview with Jane Chu, Chairman of the NEA

Jane Chu was confirmed as the chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts this past June. She recently answered a few questions about the NEA’s priorities in relation to local arts agencies. (Read more from Americans for the Arts.)

Study Shows That Recent Arts Alumni Are Resilient, Adaptable, and Involved

A study released by the Strategic National Arts Alumni Project shows that America’s most recent arts graduates are using skills learned in school combined with internship experiences to find work, forge careers, and engage their communities, despite higher student debt levels than older alumni. The report, Making It Work: The Education and Employment of Recent Arts Graduates, analyzes data from more than 88,000 arts alumni of all ages, with a particular focus on the 17,000 recent alumni—those who finished their undergraduate or graduate level degrees up to five years prior. (Read more from Indiana University Bloomington.)

Georgia State University’s Loss in “E-Reserves” Case Might Actually Be a Win for Librarians

Two weeks ago a federal appeals court ended that celebration by reversing the judge’s decision and sending the “e-reserves” case back to the lower court for further action. At a glance, the latest ruling looks like a loss for Georgia State University and its allies, and a win for three academic publishers that had sued it. But was it, really? In the days since the ruling was issued, several university-based copyright experts have argued that the reversal is not as bad as it might seem. (Read more from Wired Campus.)

The Best Teaching Resources on the Web

Those of us old enough to remember traveling to an out-of-the-way library to track down a potentially crucial roll of microfilm know just how much new technologies have transformed the way academics do research. We now happily rely on Google Books, JSTOR, and a whole parade of resources and databases available at the click of a finger. But what may be less obvious is the way new technologies have made improving our teaching a whole lot easier as well. (Read more from Vitae.)

Participatory Learning in the Art-History Classroom

In a participatory learning environment, learners get the opportunity to become part of a community of inquiry and explore abstract concepts in a nonhierarchical social context. Rather than the mere transmission and acquisition of knowledge, learning becomes relevant, engaging, and creative. (Read more from Art History Teaching Resources.)

Tenure Track Wisdom Part Two

In the second of this series of faculty interviews, we hear from Laura Krystal Porterfield, who just finished her first year as an assistant professor in the Department of Educational Foundations at the University of Wisconsin, Whitewater. She received her PhD in urban education in 2013 from Temple University, where she a held fellowship at the Center for the Humanities. (Read more from Vitae.)

Finding a Job While ABD

Going on the job market without a degree in hand, emphasizing that holding off on job-searching until the dissertation, is a luxury that is not available to everyone. Yet the prospect of landing a job can be an invaluable motivator for an ABD candidate struggling with dissertation procrastination. Here are some tips for ABDs on how to juggle the demands of grad-student life and job searching while maximizing your chances at job-market success. (Read more from Inside Higher Ed.)

The Museum Interface

It’s no longer a question of whether art institutions should have a virtual presence. Rather, the onus is being placed on designers to facilitate meaningful interactions with art that might occur in the gallery, via web-based applications or in new hybrid spaces that merge the real and the virtual. Any attempt to augment an encounter with artwork using technological means invariably raises questions about the values we assign to certain modes of viewing. After all, isn’t visiting a museum inherently tied to a very deep, very primary real-life experience? (Read more from Art in America.)

Filed under: CAA News

The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation has awarded the College Art Association (CAA) a $90,000 grant to partner with the Society for Architectural Historians (SAH) in the development of guidelines for the evaluation of digital scholarship in art and architectural history for promotion and tenure. CAA and SAH will convene a task force, hire a researcher to examine evaluative practices in departments of art and architectural history, develop a survey to seek current practices from CAA and SAH members, and provide evaluative guidelines. CAA President DeWitt Godfrey said, “Since its founding in 1911, CAA has regularly issued Standards and Guidelines for the fields of art and art history. These guidelines will encompass projects in art and architectural history that use digital technologies in research, production, publication, and/or exhibition. These growing forms of scholarship are in critical need of support and recognition, and this grant will allow CAA and SAH to provide standardized guidelines for those evaluating digital art and architectural history.”

This project will mark the first time that CAA and SAH will collaborate on professional practice guidelines, although the two associations have worked closely in other areas in the past. Pauline Saliga, SAH executive director announced, “The Society of Architectural Historians is pleased to collaborate with our sister organization, the College Art Association, on this important endeavor.  Because art and architectural historians are increasingly working collaboratively and using digital tools and data to construct their arguments, it is very important that we develop a set of guidelines for universities to recognize this innovative work.”

The ten-person task force will be chaired by CAA President DeWitt Godfrey and SAH President Ken Breisch. In addition to the chairs, the task force will comprise eight members with substantial experience in traditional and digital scholarship: two art historians, two architectural historians, a librarian, a museum curator, a scholar from another humanities or social-science field with expertise in digital scholarship, and a graduate student or emerging professional in art or architectural history.

The need for evaluative guidelines has been expressed by professors of art and architectural history who have developed research and/or publications using digital technologies, have created new digital tools for interpretation and understanding of art-historical and place-based subjects, or have collaborated with other scholars to develop digital archives and resources; by professors and administrators who have responsibility for dissertations and promotion and tenure committees but lack the necessary tools to assess digital scholarship; by CAA’s and SAH’s editorial boards and advisory committees, whose journals and online academic resources now require guidelines to facilitate critical reviews of digital scholarship; by CAA and SAH publication and award juries who need protocols for judging the quality of digital scholarship to determine awards; by academic publishers; and by other disciplines and their learned societies.

CAA and SAH anticipate that the guidelines will address different types of scholarly digital contributions: those that provide new resources, such as archives and new research tools (examples include SAH Archipedia and SAHARA); those that create scholarship in art and architectural history using publishing platforms such as Scalar and the JSTOR Current Scholarship program; those that create scholarship based on spatial and visualization technologies; and those that engage in new computational technologies.

CAA and SAH anticipate that shared guidelines will reassure art and architectural historians that new forms of digital research and scholarship will be evaluated and credentialed; provide tenure committees with specific criteria for evaluating digital projects in art and architectural history; and ensure that digital scholarship can be evaluated and supported through juries and grants, thereby increasing awareness and participation of scholars in the digital realm.

About CAA

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

About SAH

Founded in 1940, the Society of Architectural Historians is a nonprofit membership organization that promotes the study, interpretation and conservation of architecture, design, landscapes and urbanism worldwide. SAH serves a network of local, national and international institutions and individuals who, by vocation or avocation, focus on the built environment and its role in shaping contemporary life. SAH promotes meaningful public engagement with the history of the built environment through advocacy efforts, print and online publications, and local, national and international programs. Learn more at

For more information, please contact Hillary Bliss, CAA development and marketing manager, at or 212-392-4436.

CAA has just published the Annual Report 2013–2014, which describes the organization’s accomplishments over the past year. You may download a PDF of the fully illustrated, twenty-three-page document.

Abundantly illustrated by photographs from the 2014 Annual Conference in Chicago, the report presents a summary of an enormously productive year that included several major projects: a copublishing agreement with Taylor & Francis that brought all of CAA’s scholarly journals online; the ongoing fair-use initiative that will soon establish practical guidelines for the visual arts; and the restructuring of the individual membership program to better accommodate part-time faculty and independent art historians and artists.

Also covered is an overview of the CAA-Getty International Program, which brought twenty scholars from around the world to the Chicago conference, as well as a selected list of grants received during the fiscal year and statistics related to CAA News,, and social media. An update on professional-development activities and a financial statement on the 2014 fiscal year close the report.

We hope you will enjoy reading about CAA’s accomplishments.

Filed under: CAA News

ARTexchange in New York

posted by October 27, 2014

ARTexchange for the 2015 Annual Conference in New York is now full.

The Services to Artists Committee invites artist members to participate in ARTexchange, the annual meet-up for artists and curators at CAA’s unique pop-up exhibition. This social event provides an opportunity for artists to share their work and build affinities with other artists, historians, curators, and cultural producers. ARTexchange will take place at the 103rd Annual Conference on Friday evening, February 13, 2015, from 5:30 to 7:30 PM. This event is free and open to the public.

Each artist is given the space on, above, and beneath a six-foot table to exhibit their works: prints, paintings, drawings, photographs, sculptures, and small installations; performance, process-based, interactive and participatory works are especially encouraged. Previous ARTexchange participants have found that this parameter sparked many creative display options. Depending on the number and type of submissions CAA receives, a schedule of performances may be created. Please note that artwork cannot be hung on walls, and it is not possible to run power cords from laptops or other electronic devices to outlets—bring fully charged batteries.

To participate, send an email to Lauren Stark, CAA manager of programs. Include your CAA member number and a brief description of what you plan to present. Please provide details regarding performance, sound, spoken word, or technology-based work, including laptop presentations. You will receive an email confirmation. Because ARTexchange is a popular venue and participation is based on available space, early applicants are given preference. Participants are responsible for their work; CAA is not liable for losses or damages. Sales of work are not permitted. Deadline extended: January 9, 2015.

Image: Hannah Skoonberg participated in ARTexchange at the 2014 Annual Conference in Chicago (photograph by Bradley Marks)

Filed under: Annual Conference, Artists

Sheila J. McNally: In Memoriam

posted by October 24, 2014

Sheila J. McNally, professor emerita of art history at the University of Minnesota, passed away in Minneapolis on September 24, 2014. She was 81 years old.

McNally graduated with a BA from Vassar College in 1953. Following studies at the University of Kiel, the University of Munich, and the Radcliffe Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, she received her PhD from Harvard University in 1965, writing a dissertation on “The Role of Ornament in Protocorinthian Vase Painting.” After serving as a lecturer and instructor at Ohio State University and Mount Holyoke College, McNally joined the faculty of the University of Minnesota in 1965. Until 1987 she was a member of the Art History Department; between 1987 and 2004 she was affiliated with the Department of Classical and Near Eastern Studies; and then from 2004 until her retirement in 2010 she was again a faculty member in the Department of Art History.

Over the course of her long career McNally was widely recognized as a dynamic educator and accomplished scholar. In addition to numerous publications on Diocletian’s Palace in Split, Croatia—including her 1996 book The Architectural Ornament of Diocletian’s Palace at Split—her work engaged Coptic Egypt and the art and archaeology of monasticism, as well as Greek and Roman sculpture, mosaics, and pottery. She served as a member of the board of directors of the College Art Association and Mid-America Art History Society, and as a member of the advisory board of the Women’s Caucus for Art, the board of governors and other committees of the Archaeological Institute of America, and the Rome Prize jury of the American Academy in Rome.

McNally was a pathbreaking scholar and archaeologist—among the earliest women to make a name for herself in a field long dominated by men—and was an inspiring role model to young women in the field of Classical archaeology. She will be remembered as a passionate individual who lived her life in an utterly unique fashion, and will be missed by all who knew her.

Contributions in her honor can be made to the Sheila McNally Fellowship Fund (care of the Department of Art History), which supports graduate students pursuing the PhD in the art and archaeology of the late antiquity.

Filed under: Obituaries

CAA’s 2014 editions of Graduate Programs in the Visual Arts and Graduate Programs in Art History are comprehensive resources that feature updated information about 630 programs in 400 schools in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Europe, and beyond (see sample entries).

The directories provide prospective graduate students with the information they need to begin the application process. The directories are also key professional references for career-services representatives, department chairs, graduate and undergraduate advisors, librarians, professional-practices educators, and professors interested in helping emerging generations of artists and scholars find success.

Entries from the following program types are available: History of Art and Architecture; Studio Art and Design; Curatorial and Museum Studies; Arts Administration; Art Education; Library Science; Film Production; and Conservation and Historic Preservation.

New this year, CAA is offering PDF files of individual programs (updated in 2014) free of charge with the option of free customized PDF files, created on demand, based on the user’s preferred search criteria. Anyone can search the directories online by program type, faculty specialization, awarded degrees, country, region, state, availability of health insurance, and whether or not part-time students are admitted, or browse the directories by institution and download individual institutional records as PDF files. Search results include the program type, its location, and the program name and description, while the PDF file gives an in-depth profile of each program.

Print volumes offer several delivery options; e-books (as PDF or ePub files) can be downloaded twice and are compatible with your personal computer and most smart phones and ereaders (excluding Kindles). Please note that the individual, program-specific print volumes were last updated in 2013 and are available at a discounted rate.

Individuals can order through CAA’s website. If you are ordering for a school, institution, or department within a college or university, please download the order form and return the completed version with payment to Roberta Lawson, CAA office coordinator. We are unable to process Institutional orders online. Your order will be processed within three to five business days.

For more details, visit the CAA website. For questions about purchasing, please contact Roberta Lawson, CAA office coordinator, at 212-392-4404.

CAA has published Conference Information and Registration, which provides important details, instructions, and deadlines for attending and participating in the 2015 Annual Conference, as an online flipbook. The thirty-five-page publication is hosted by Issuu, a popular digital-publishing platform. Those wanting a printable version of the booklet can download a PDF. This is the first year that Conference Information and Registration is an online-only publication; CAA members will not receive hard copies in the mail.

Following sections on registration and CAA membership, Conference Information and Registration describes travel, lodging, and transportation options and explains the basic processes for candidates seeking jobs and employers placing classifieds and renting booths and tables in the Interview Hall. In addition, the publication lists topics for nine Professional-Development Workshops. If you want to connect with former and current professors and students, consult the Reunions and Receptions page. The booklet includes forms for CAA membership, conference registration, workshops, special events, and mentoring enrollment.

The contents of Conference Information and Registration also appear on the conference website, which is being updated regularly between now and the February meeting. There you may also join CAA or renew your membership before registering online.

Filed under: Annual Conference, Publications

Solo Exhibitions by Artist Members

posted by October 22, 2014

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.

October 2014


Linda Stein. HUB Gallery, HUB-Robeson Center, Pennsylvania State University, University Park, Pennsylvania, September 5–November 20, 2014. The Fluidity of Gender: Sculpture by Linda Stein. Sculpture.


Michelle Handelman. NewFest, Lincoln Center, New York, July 27, 2014. Irma Vep, the Last Breath. Single-channel video.

Michael Rich. Old Spouter Gallery, Nantucket, Massachusetts, August 8–21, 2014. A Season’s Journey, Not Far from Home. Painting.


Angela Ellsworth. Lisa Sette Gallery, Scottsdale, Arizona, January 2–February 1, 2014. Volume. Works on paper and cardboard.

Michelle Handelman. Outfest, REDCAT, Los Angeles, California, July 19, 2014. Irma Vep, the Last Breath. Single-channel video.

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.

AIA Statement on the Recent Sale of Artifacts by the St. Louis Society

The Archaeological Institute of America has learned with grave concern that the AIA St. Louis Society has sold a collection of Egyptian artifacts entrusted to its care. These objects were intended to benefit the citizens of St. Louis by helping them to understand the record of past human achievement. The decision to sell these objects after a century of custodianship contravenes this expectation. (Read more from the Archaeological Institute of America.)

Publishers Win Reversal of Court Ruling That Favored “E-Reserves” at Georgia State University

How much copyrighted material can professors make available to students in online course reserves before they exceed the boundaries of educational fair use? That’s the essential question at the heart of a long-running copyright-infringement lawsuit that has pitted three academic publishers against Georgia State University. Last week, in a setback for the university, a federal appeals court reversed a May 2012 ruling that mostly favored Georgia State. (Read more from the Chronicle of Higher Education.)

Nurturing Talent

Design education leaves designers lacking in business skills—it’s hard enough to learn to be a designer, but there needs to be a next step for the business side that caters to the entrepreneur. Who wants to spend two years getting an MBA if you’ve got a hot idea? We need a place where smart, talented designers can get an on-demand education about how to start a business, which includes everything from financial planning and costing to how to stay out of trouble. (Read more from Metropolis.)

“Looking” at Art in the Smartphone Age

“Beyoncé and Jay-Z Take Selfie with Mona Lisa!” headlines all over the internet blared. And it’s true, the first couple of American pop culture did take a photo of themselves in front of one of the masterpieces of European art history. But in the instantly iconic image, the two musicians aren’t even looking at the famous work of art that they knowingly appropriate. In fact, they have their backs turned to it, with the Mona Lisa’s face poking out over their shoulders like a photobomb across the centuries. (Read more from Pacific Standard.)

Soft Fabrics Have Solid Appeal

Once dismissed as utilitarian, homespun, and intellectually flimsy, textiles are gaining international stature in art museums. The artist Richard Tuttle just unveiled a vast installation in Tate Modern’s Turbine Hall, called I Don’t Know, or the Weave of Textile Language, while new and older works are on view in his retrospective at the Whitechapel Gallery in east London. Meanwhile, there are shows on fiber art, weaving, and embroidery at the Drawing Center in New York and the Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston. (Read more from the Art Newspaper.)

Hanging a Tapestry in the Met Is a Lot More Complicated Than You Think

The Metropolitan Museum of Art recently opened a new exhibition: Grand Design, a collection featuring nineteen massive tapestries by the Renaissance master Pieter Coecke van Aelst. The tapestries are epic, intricate pieces, spanning up to thirty feet in length and weighing an average of one hundred pounds—which begs the question of how, exactly, the museum hangs them. (Read more from Slate.)

The Confidence Gap in Academic Writing

As a writing workshop instructor, I’ve become familiar with the garden-variety problems that graduate students face in writing a dissertation. Often those difficulties boil down to an avoidance of the daily grind of writing itself. Sometimes students lack any concrete feedback on their drafts or receive comments that are too general to be of much help in the revision process. Many students are unfamiliar with the tricks and tools of the writing trade itself—things like reverse outlines, free writing, or “storyboarding.” (Read more from Vitae.)

Managing Your Academic Career

In my ten years of interviewing and/or observing approximately one hundred faculty members at various types of institutions, I have learned a great deal about how to shape and manage academic work in ways that promote meaningful, balanced, and satisfying careers. To prepare for a presentation at new faculty orientation at Saint Joseph’s University, I reviewed the field notes, interview transcripts, and publications from my past studies with one question in mind: What strategies might best help new faculty members manage their academic careers during a time of rising expectations, decreasing resources, and diminishing boundaries between work and life? (Read more from Inside Higher Ed.)

Filed under: CAA News

Dissertation titles in art history and visual studies from American and Canadian institutions, both completed and in progress, are published annually in, making them available through web searches. PhD-granting institutions may send a list of their doctoral students’ dissertation titles for 2014 to The complete Dissertation Submission Guidelines regarding the format of listings are now available. CAA does not accept listings from individuals. Improperly formatted lists will be returned to sender. For more information, please write to the above email address or visit the guidelines page. Deadline: January 15, 2015.