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Report from Arts Advocacy Day 2015

posted by March 31, 2015

Hillary Bliss is CAA development and marketing manager.

Last week CAA sent two representatives to participate in the twenty-eighth annual Arts Advocacy Day in Washington, DC. Anna Cline, CAA development and marketing assistant, and I joined 550 grassroots advocates representing forty-eight states to lobby for strong public policies and increased funding for the arts. CAA also supported the event, which is organized by Americans for the Arts, as a national cosponsor.

Monday, March 23

Cline and I attended a full day of training that included legislative and political updates, in-depth briefings on our three primary “asks” (more on those later), and facts and figures to make a compelling case for the arts. We also heard an inspiring keynote address by Jane Chu, the recently appointed chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA). A role-play demonstration for congressional visits was incredibly helpful in illustrating how advocacy teams can manage the varying personalities and political agendas of senators, representatives, and their staffs to communicate clear messages and secure commitments of support in the form of caucus enrollment or letters addressing particular funding levels or policy positions. The most important takeaway was to strategically couple facts and figures—whether they be economic impact reports, matching-fund statistics, or art education’s effect on drop-out rates and SAT scores—with personal stories to create memorable and meaningful visits with legislators.

The three primary issues for Arts Advocacy Day were:

NEA Funding: We sought support for a $155 million budget for the NEA in the fiscal year 2016 Interior Appropriations bill. The broad reach and impact of the NEA can not be overstated: the agency awards approximately 2,300 grants per year to organizations in every US congressional district, reaches more than 38 million people through live art events, and helps to leverage roughly $600 million in matching funds from other state, local, and private sources. Closer to home, CAA has received support from the NEA every year since 2010 for ARTspace, a free and open component of the Annual Conference.

Arts in Education: We urged Congress to support $30 million for the Arts In Education (AIE) programs in the fiscal year 2016 Labor-Heath and Human Services-Education appropriations bill and retain it as a distinct grant competition for programs that strengthen the arts as a core academic subject of learning. Consolidation into an appropriations bill would risk compromising the program. We also sought support for retaining the arts in the definition of core academic subjects and for strengthening equitable access to the arts in the reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA).

Tax Reform: Since many arts organizations operate as nonprofit entities, tax reform regarding charitable giving is a critical issue. We asked Congress to preserve incentives for donations by protecting full value tax deductions for all forms of charitable gifts; we also advised against the adoption of “caps” or “floors” for deductions. We also urged Congress to make the IRA charitable rollover permanent so that donors can achieve the greatest impact with their planned giving. We also asked representatives to support the Artist-Museum Partnership Act, which would allow artists to take an income tax deduction for the fair market value of their work when they donate it to charitable collecting institutions.

There was no shortage of issues this year: advocates addressed arts in health, net neutrality, protection of wireless technology for the arts and media, and visa processes for foreign guest artists in short training sessions throughout the day. You can download American’s for the Arts’ 2015 Congressional Arts Handbook for facts and figures on all of these issues.

Closing the prelude to Arts Advocacy Day was the Nancy Hanks Lecture on Arts and Public Policy, this year given by the television writer and producer Norman Lear at the John F. Kennedy Center for Performing Arts. You can view Lear’s moving lecture, introduced by the hip-hop recording artist Common, on YouTube.

Tuesday, March 24

The packed Congressional Arts Kick-Off on Tuesday marked the official start of Arts Advocacy Day on Capitol Hill and featured speakers such as Representative Louise Slaughter (D-NY) and Representative Leonard Lance (R-NJ), cochairs of the Congressional Arts Caucus. Senator Tom Udall of New Mexico received the Congressional Arts Leadership Award in recognition of his distinguished service on behalf of the arts.

Cline and I were on separate advocacy teams representing the New York City area that included undergraduate and graduate students and representatives from arts organizations such as Actors’ Equity Association, Fractured Atlas, POV, and others. We met with the offices of Representatives Carolyn Maloney (NY-12), Grace Meng (NY-6), Jerrold Nadler (NY-10), Lee Zeldin (NY-1), Peter T. King (NY-2), Steve Israel (NY-3), Kathleen Rice (NY-4), Gregory W. Meeks (NY-5), and Hakeem Jeffries (NY-8). Overall the meetings went extremely well. Our groups were able to address the key public policy and funding issues mentioned above, as well as to communicate the work of CAA and its members.

In a visit with Nadler’s office, Cline thanked the congressman for his vigorous efforts to pass the American Royalties Too (ART) Act, which would ensure that visual artists are compensated when their original artwork is resold; she also offered CAA’s continued support for this legislation. Though a meeting was originally scheduled with a member of his staff, Rep. Israel met with my team to discuss the NEA budget. As a member of the House Committee on Appropriations—and more specifically, the Subcommittee on Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies, which covers the NEA budget—Israel spoke about the budget process and stated that its current proposal includes $155 million for the NEA. Time will tell what the final approved NEA budget will be.

Visiting the congressional office buildings reinforces the fact that senators and representatives work for you. I noticed a marked difference in visits to representatives for whom we had a constituent on our team. Multiple staffers told us that they needed more vocal support for the arts to pass the legislation and public-funding increases we were requesting, so I encourage you to contact your legislators and express your support. Americans for the Arts has a useful site that includes not only information on issues and supporting materials like facts and figures, but also links to tools for finding and contacting your legislator.


The US Capitol Building in Washington, DC (photograph by Hillary Bliss)

Senator Tom Udall of New Mexico accepting his Congressional Arts Leadership Award at the Congressional Arts Kick-Off event (photograph by Hillary Bliss)

My advocacy team after meeting with Representative Steve Israel. From left to right: Lawrence Lorchack, Actors’ Equity Association; Lynn Koos, New York University; Representative Steve Israel; Alison Ribellino, Towson University; Mary An, POV; and Linni Deihl, Andrew Anzel, and Haven G. Mitchell-Rose, New York University (photograph by Hillary Bliss)

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.

Median Salaries of Tenured and Tenure-Track Professors at Four-Year Colleges, 2014–15

The median base salaries of tenured and tenure-track professors at four-year colleges increased by 2 percent in 2014—a rate of salary growth that was down a tenth of a percent from the previous year, according to the results of an annual survey from the College and University Professional Association for Human Resources. (Read more from the Chronicle of Higher Education.)

Help Desk: Put the Artist First

In the role of writer and curator, I find myself playing bureaucratic middleman between artists and the public, or between artists and institutions. When I get an idea for an exhibition or written feature, the appropriate order of things often gets confusing for me. Should I first approach the artists with the idea, to make sure they are willing and able to participate, or should I discuss the project with the institution or publication, to be sure it gets green-lit? (Read more from Daily Serving.)

Museums Turn to Technology to Boost Attendance by Millennials

Art museum attendance dipped 5 percent from 2002 to 2012, according to the National Endowment for the Arts. Museumgoers 75 and older were the only age group to increase over that period. The guardians of posterity must be concerned about the future, no matter how long the lines may be. Curators worry most about millennials. How do static galleries of canvas and artifact engage a generation raised on the reactive pleasures of right swipes and hyperlinks? How do you sell Goya when Game of Thrones is a click away? (Read more from the New York Times.)

Taking Note: More Resources for Arts Data-Miners

The nation’s museums and libraries are taking prodigious steps to bring their most prized collections of artistic and cultural heritage online. But what about the data concerning those institutions? If we increasingly have the chance to view a painting, piece of sculpture, or rare manuscript from any location, then how easy is it to access basic stats about those items, to run them through analysis without cumbersome software, and to create visualizations that can be shared on multiple platforms? (Read more from the National Endowment for the Arts.)

Dimensions: Expanded Measures of Textiles

The contributions to this issue of Art Practical explore making and process in several ways—through elemental fibers, woven structures, and cloth’s capacity to hold color. Sonya Clark employs the most elemental of fibers—hair—in her essay, while Rebecca Gates’s exploratory text reveals how certain artists employ the warp and weft of a woven textile to create works that are simultaneously aural and visual experiences. (Read more from Art Practical.)

Museums Unite in Campaign to Save Massive Land Art Project

American museums—including the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Museum of Modern Art, the Institute of Contemporary Art in Boston, and the Walker Art Center—are campaigning for the conservation of Basin and Range, the stretch of the land surrounding Michael Heizer’s City. Michael Govan, director of LACMA, said, “The extraordinary Basin and Range landscape by itself is worth protecting. Michael Heizer’s art must be protected too. Together, the environment and the artwork comprise one of the nation’s greatest natural and artistic treasures.” (Read more from the Art Newspaper.)

A Report on AP Art History (Part I)

The College Board has released a significant revision of the curriculum for Advanced Placement (AP) Art History that goes into effect in 2015–16. This presents the opportunity to encourage greater exchange between secondary and university educators who have developed innovative teaching methods that can be effective at any level of art-historical study. (Read more from Art History Teaching Resources.)

How to Improve the Job Search Process, from the Perspective of a Candidate

Job openings are both a blessing and a curse. Search committees spend their time and energy reading through applications, selecting candidates, and making choices. But, no matter the stress that current faculty members are under, the applicants are under more. Each of us applicants is applying for dozens of jobs, possibly year after year. (Read more from Tenure, She Wrote.)

Filed under: CAA News

Today is Arts Advocacy Day!

posted by March 24, 2015

Americans for the Arts sent the following email on March 24, 2015

Today is Arts Advocacy Day!

Today, Americans for the Arts and its affiliate the Arts Action Fund celebrate National Arts Advocacy Day, part of the National Arts Action Summit, with thousands of arts advocates across the country and hundreds of partnering state, local, and national arts and arts education organizations.

If you can’t join us in Washington, DC, today, then join us by letting your member of Congress know that you support the arts!

Today, more than 550 dedicated arts supporters from 48 states will come together in Washington, DC, for the 28th annual Arts Advocacy Day, the only national event that brings together a broad cross section of America’s cultural and civic organizations.

  • Participating in events are actor and Turnaround Artist Doc Shaw; actress, writer, dancer, and Americans for the Arts Artists Committee Member Victoria Rowell, American actress and playwright Holland Taylor, musicians Marc Roberge and Richard On from the American rock band O.A.R, and singer and performer Grace Weber
  • Last night, multi–Grammy Award winning artist COMMON introduced the 28th Annual Americans for the Arts’ Nancy Hanks Lecturer on Arts and Public Policy and groundbreaking television producer, author, and social activist, Norman Lear, at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts

These hundreds of arts advocates represent a united effort to tell Capitol Hill how important the arts are to our communities, how much arts education means to our future, and how the arts improve our daily lives. With 87 national cosponsoring organizations, Arts Advocacy Day helps shape this united arts message to Congress.

Ways You Can Take Part

Ask your members of Congress to support the arts. Visit our E-Advocacy Center and you’ll be able to send a message in less than two minutes directly to your representative and senators telling them why the arts are important to you and your community. Take two minutes and send your message to Congress today!
Join the discussion on the Arts Advocacy Day Facebook page.

On Twitter? Tweet your proarts support, follow @Americans4Arts, and track all the action in Washington, DC, at #AAD15 and #ArtsVote!

Help us continue this important work by becoming an official member of the Arts Action Fund. If you are not already a member, play your part by joining the Arts Action Fund today—it’s free and easy to join.

Thank you for your support of the arts.

Patricia Rubin is Judy and Michael Steinhardt Director of the Institute of Fine Arts at New York University.

In 2010, thanks to a grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the Institute of Fine Art at New York University inaugurated the Mellon Research Initiative. The initiative’s aim was to investigate trends in graduate education and advanced research in art history, archaeology, and conservation. That investigation took place at a time when those fields faced considerable challenges—financial, institutional, and conceptual. Cutbacks in funding from all sources and the concomitant or resulting instrumentalization of university education, which favors economic rationales for degree structures, department sizes, and disciplinary evaluation, presented explicit challenges to the humanistic as opposed to the “hard” sciences. They continue to do so.

The resulting publication, Pathways to the Future: Trends in Graduate Education, was introduced and discussed during three panels at CAA’s Annual Conference in February under the rubric of “Field/Work: Object and Site.” The Pathways report is the result of four years of consultation, undertaken through a series of workshops, conferences, and committees in which our fieldworkers—graduate students, professors, publishers, and university administrators, among others—were asked about the directions being taken in art history, archaeology, and conservation. These participants considered the resources those fields require to support graduate training and research; how those resources are most meaningfully allocated; and, crucially, how learning is best delivered in curriculum and training programs.

The public workshops and conferences (now available on the institute’s video archive) were accompanied by the work of three committees convened to pose relevant questions and investigate different aspects of our practices as researchers and educators. Unified in aim, the review committees largely operated independently. They shaped their work according to concerns and protocols specific to each field. The form of their reporting varies accordingly. All three committees considered both present conditions and future possibilities.

The examination of the state of our subjects found them to be generally robust. If anything they are stronger than ever before, existing as they do in today’s image-based environment and able to promote critical seeing along with critical thinking. They are inherently interdisciplinary and equally international or global in their inquiry and potential impact. They have direct relation to material understanding, in the recovery and safeguarding of our physical heritage, in interpreting its present condition, and in forecasting future manifestations.

Although based on wide consultation and meticulous deliberation, this report is intended to contribute to vital and ongoing conversations about the disciplines of art history, archaeology, and conservation, about their professional and intellectual situation, and about strengths, weaknesses, and strategies. Their thoughts on those matters are contained in this document, which is available on the institute’s website for downloading and circulating. The institute hopes this document generates discussion and stimulates further thoughts on the topics it raises and regarding training and research in art history, archaeology, and conservation.

The institute is profoundly grateful to the Mellon Foundation for its generous sponsorship, and to all those who participated in the initiative.

Serve on a CAA Award Jury

posted by March 23, 2015

CAA invites nominations and self-nominations for individuals to serve on eight of the twelve juries for the annual Awards for Distinction for three years (2015–18). Terms begin in May 2015; award years are 2016–18. 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:

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 24, 2015.

Filed under: Awards, Service

Want to know more about fair use in the visual arts? Have questions about how you can use fair use in your work? Join the lead principal investigators of CAA’s new Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for the Visual Arts, Patricia Aufderheide, university professor in the School of Communication at American University and Peter Jaszi, professor of law in the Program on Information Justice and Intellectual Property at American University’s Washington College of Law, for a series of webinars offering in-depth tutorials on the Code. CAA will issue Certificates of Participation to those who complete the entire series of webinars. The series will include the following topics:

March 27, 2015, 1:00–2:00 PM (EDT): An Introduction to CAA’s Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for the Visual Arts

April 10, 2015, 1:00–2:00 PM (EDT): Fair Use in Scholarship

May 15, 2015, 1:00–2:00 PM (EDT): Fair Use in Teaching and Art Practice

May 29, 2015, 1:00–2:00 PM (EDT): Fair Use in Museums and Archives

June 5, 2015, 1:00–2:00 PM (EDT): Fair Use in the Visual Arts: A Review

You may register for the first webinar (March 27) here. Registration for the remaining four webinars is available as a series here. Regardless of the number of these sessions you wish to attend, please register for the entire series and participate in whichever sessions you would like.

Registration is free and open to the public thanks to a generous grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. The webinars will be available at a later date as archived videos for CAA members.

Questions? Email CAA at

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.

Welcome to the Brave New World of the Corporate-Sponsored Artist

It has never been easy for writers and artists to pursue their craft: art takes time and does not, in most cases, result in much monetary payoff. Since the 1900s, nonprofit organizations have filled this role with residency programs that are usually funded by wealthy donors or public donations. The Alliance of Artists Communities tracks these programs: there are currently over two hundred in the United States. But over the last couple of years, a new variety of artist-in-residence program has entered the scene, this time sponsored by big companies. (Read more from Fast Company.)

A Real Estate Investment Cooperative for NYC

In 2008, some friends and I built out and managed a studio space in New York. We signed a five-year lease (with a three-year option) and hoped for the best. Most of us got involved to save money, but quickly the space became an emotional intellectual home. When I realized that we would pay our landlord $960,000 over eight years for a dilapidated 8,000-square-foot studio space, I became obsessed with affordable, equitable ownership models. (Read more from Medium.)

A Palette of Textures

We become painters at some deep level not out of a love of images—after all, there are many ways to create those. Instead, at some point, we fall in love with the very stuff of our chosen medium. And if that happens to be oils, then our love is with the silky, dense, slippery, and intractable mud we spend our lives trying to master. (Read more from Just Paint.)

The Near and Far Future of Libraries

Recently, Google vice president Vint Cerf warned that we might be headed for a digital dark age, a massive loss of information with obsolete file types and hardware. That’s an especially dire prophecy in an era when digitization is rapidly eclipsing print media, artificial intelligence is perfecting search queries, and drastic upheavals are quietly underfoot at the world’s historic libraries. All this leads to the question of what happens if we lose our traditional libraries? (Read more from Hopes and Fears.)

In the Memory Ward

At first, the library of the Warburg Institute, in London, seems and smells like any other university library: four floors of fluorescent lights and steel shelves, with the damp, weedy aroma of aging books everywhere, and sudden apparitions of graduate students wearing that look, at once brightly keen and infinitely discouraged, eternally shared by graduate students, whether the old kind, with suede elbow patches, or the new kind, with many piercings. Only as the visitor begins to study the collections does the oddity of the place appear. (Read more from the New Yorker.)

Global Audiences, Zero Visitors: How to Measure the Success of Museums’ Online Publishing

Fifty percent of arts organizations in the United States maintain a blog. The Metropolitan Museum of Art calculated that while it draws six million visitors in a year, its website attracts 29 million users and its Facebook page reaches 92 million. Yet only a small percentage of these online visitors would ever walk up the New York museum’s famous steps. If the internet has changed the definition of what a museum’s audience is, then it also poses the difficult question of how to interact with it. (Read more from Rhizome.)

Spare Us the So-Called Experts and Call for the Connoisseurs

In the quest for academic impartiality, we often ignore actual ability. True attributional expertise—let us be grown up and call it connoisseurship—can only be gained through years of experience. It requires intense scrutiny of paintings by all manner of artists, of all levels of quality, and of pictures in varying conditions. Although there is a certain element of natural talent in connoisseurship, there is no substitute for training your “eye” over time. (Read more from the Art Newspaper.)

Teaching Art History and Race: Bridging Gaps in the Global Survey Course

Designed to explore art from prehistory through the present, the current global survey course is often problematic. Many popular textbooks analyze art in the Western world extensively and chronologically while reviewing thousands of years of non-Western art history geographically in single chapters. This imbalance avoids addressing important issues including gender and race. In 2014, the murders of Eric Gardner and Michael Brown brought similar concerns in our society to light. These events provoked us to engage our art-history survey students about the relationship of art and race, and how that interaction calls attention to the inherent inequalities in our own field. (Read more from Art History Teaching Resources.)

Filed under: CAA News

This year, fifteen scholars from around the world attended CAA’s Annual Conference in New York as participants in the CAA-Getty International Program. The temperature in town when everyone arrived on February 8 was a frigid 10 degrees; nonetheless, the international travelers were intrepid, and their warmth and excitement did much to allay the cold weather outside.

Now in its fourth year, the program brings together art historians, artists who teach art history, and museum curators to meet with CAA members in their fields of study, attend conference sessions, and participate in a one-day preconference colloquium on international issues in art history. Funded by a generous grant from the Getty Foundation, this year’s scholars came from Argentina (Georgina Gluzman), Bangladesh (Mokammal H. Bhuiyan), Brazil (Ana Mannarino), Burkina Faso (Boureima Diamitani), China (Shao Yiyang), Croatia (Ljerka Dulibić), Hungary (Márton Orosz and Nóra Veszprémi), India (Savita Kumari), Mexico (Dafne Cruz Porchini), Russia (Andrey Shabanov), South Africa (Nomusa Makhubu and Lize van Robbroeck), Uganda (Angelo Kakande), and Ukraine (Nazar Kozak). For some, it was their first visit to the United States; for all, it was their first time at a CAA Annual Conference.

A highlight of the program was a full-day preconference colloquium about international issues in art history. Each of the fifteen participants gave presentations about their work, relating their specific research interests to one of five broader topics: Questioning the Discourse, Beyond Borders/Beyond Context, Activism and the Political, Cross-Cultural Encounters/Reception, and Exhibiting Cultures in a Global Society. The talks featured a wide range of art and varied approaches to the field. They were followed throughout the day by Q&A sessions and open discussions moderated by Rosemary O’Neill, chair of CAA’s International Committee, and Marc Gotlieb, president of the National Committee for the History of Art. As Nóra Veszprémi, a scholar from Hungary wrote, “The topics were as diverse as the participants themselves, but the questions that lay at the heart of the papers were closely related. Everyone was interested in the ‘internationalization’ of art history, and it was a wonderful experience to be able to discuss these issues with colleagues from all over the world.”

The colloquium included a number of CAA members serving as hosts to the international scholars. This year, many hosts came from select CAA affiliated societies, thereby sharing scholarly interests and providing networking opportunities for the participants. For example, Deepali Dewan, president of the American Council for Southern Asian Art (ACSAA), was paired with Savita Kumari, an Indian art historian specializing in medieval and premodern Indian art, and Elisa Mandell, president of the Association for Latin American Art (ALAA), served as host to Georgina Guzman from Argentina and Dafne Cruz Porchini from Mexico. Other hosts came from the Society of Historians of East European, Eurasian, and Russian Art and Architecture (SHERA), the Arts Council of the African Studies Association (ACASA), the Renaissance Society of America (RSA), and the Society of Contemporary Art Historians (SCAH). CAA’s International Committee also supplied hosts, rounding out an excellent group of art historians to welcome and assist the international scholars. CAA is grateful to the National Committee for the History of Art for its financial support of the hosting activities of these CAA members.

The CAA-Getty scholars were busy throughout the conference week, attending sessions, meeting colleagues, and visiting New York museums and galleries. On Thursday the group attended two sessions, sponsored by CAA’s International Committee, that examined the legacy of the landmark exhibition Magiciens de la Terre, curated by Jean-Hubert Martin in 1989 at the Centre Georges Pompidou and the Grande Halle at the Parc de la Villette in Paris. Martin, who participated in the sessions and attended Tuesday’s preconference as well, discussed the rationale behind the exhibition, which challenged Western preconceptions about non-Western art by displaying an unprecedented mix of objects—half of the works were by Western artists and the other half by artists from the rest of the world. Martin’s presentation was followed by other talks and, later in the afternoon, a roundtable discussion. In all, the events of this day provided an excellent platform for continuing Tuesday’s discussion about international issues in art history.

As in past years, CAA’s International Committee was centrally involved in planning this year’s international program. We are particularly grateful to Rosemary O’Neill, chair of the committee, for her enthusiastic support. In addition to organizing the sessions on Magiciens de la Terre (with her fellow committee member Gwen Farrelly), O’Neill helped to coordinate the preconference colloquium and even raised outside funds to bring Martin to the conference.

At the close of the week’s activities, program participants met again to learn about publishing art history in the United States and opportunities for residencies at research institutes. Susan Bielstein from the University of Chicago Press, Kirk Ambrose, editor of The Art Bulletin, and Gail Feigenbaum of the Getty Research Institute provided enormously helpful information on these subjects.

The CAA-Getty scholars then had a weekend on their own to explore New York before heading to the Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute in Williamstown, Massachusetts, to meet with scholars there and learn about the research opportunities offered by that institution’s Research and Academic Program. The trip was a wonderful opportunity to see a great museum and experience a totally different part of the United States (where it was even colder than New York).

The purpose of the CAA-Getty International Program is to bring a more diverse and global perspective to the study of art history by generating international scholarly exchange. This year’s visitors brought with them a great deal of knowledge, enthusiasm, and curiosity about the field, which they shared with the CAA members they met, as well as with each other. In return, conference attendees offered their expertise and friendship, beginning relationships that will hopefully bear fruit in future projects and collaborations.

Nazar Kozak, an art historian from Ukraine, summarized the experiences of many when he wrote, “To put it simply, I understood that I can become a part of a global scholarly community. I felt like I belong here.”


2015 CAA-Getty International Program participants. Front row, left to right: Savita Kumari, Andrey Shabanov, Nóra Veszprémi, Shao Yiyang, Janet Landay (from CAA), Ana Mannarino, Nomusa Makhubu, and Dafne Cruz Porchini. Back row, left to right: Nazar Kozak, Márton Orosz, Angelo Kakande, Boureima Diamitani, Ljerka Dulibić, Lize van Robbroeck, and Georgina Gluzman. Not pictured: Mokammal H. Bhuiyan (photograph by Bradley Marks)

Nazar Kozak with his host, Margaret Samu (photograph by Bradley Marks)

Ana Mannarino, Dafne Cruz Porchini, and Namusa Makhubu (photograph by Bradley Marks)

CAA President DeWitt Godfrey and Ljerka Dulibic (photograph by Bradley Marks)

Associate Director/Director of Conferences
College Art Association

Under the supervision of the Executive Director, is responsible for providing leadership for CAA’s conference programs, identifying content, content providers, and dissemination mechanisms that meet the needs of those working in academic visual arts fields. This position enables CAA to respond to a changing environment by planning and implementing conferences as well as special programs and activities that support the CAA Strategic Plan.

Responsibilities include all planning and administrative activities related to organizing CAA conferences and meetings, such as the selection and contracting of the conference hotels and preparing and publishing all conference information. Acts as ex officio liaison to the annual conference committee, which vets all session proposals, and schedules its meetings. In consultation with leaders in the visual arts fields, identifies workshop leaders, career services mentors, roundtable leaders, distinguished artists to be interviewed, and distinguished art historians to be honored. Oversees the organization of CAA’s Career Services and interview hall. Works in cooperation with a local community to organize exhibitions and receptions. Prepares the schedule of special events, including convocation, openings, and the annual business meeting. Works cooperatively with the staff and individuals from the hosting community and local universities and museums to prepare and coordinate all conference programs. Administers conference travel grant programs. Organizes other conferences and regional meetings as needed.

Prepares annual budget and forecasts and adheres to budgets.

Supervises Programs Department staff: Assistant Director for Annual Conference, Manager of Programs and Archivist, CAA-Getty International Program Manager and Programs Assistant (part-time).

Key Responsibilities

  • Schedules conference sites, contracts the hotels, and works with onsite hotel staff during the conferences
  • Selects and contracts all conference service providers, including AV provider and temp agencies
  • Schedules all sessions, meetings, and special events
  • Oversees the organization and content of the conference website
  • Organizes the convocation program in cooperation with the president and executive director
  • Oversees the organization of the book and trade fair exhibitors
  • Works cooperatively with the Board of Directors, staff, and standing committees to organize and schedule board sessions, professional development programs, mentoring, special events, tours, and receptions
  • Oversees the organization of the CAA Career Services, including the Interview Hall
  • Proposes the jurors for the awards of distinction, oversees the jury process, and organizes the awards presentation ceremony at Convocation
  • Works cooperatively with the IT staff on the session submission systems, database design, registration processing, financial management

Education and Experience

  • MA in art history or MFA in studio art; PhD in art history preferred with some studio coursework;
  • At least 3 years experience in academic administration such as department head or collaborative scholarly or creative projects
  • Experience in organizing national or international scholarly conferences
  • Academic committee experience
  • Familiarity with academic curriculum and tenure requirements, current trends in art history, critical theory, contemporary art, studio art and design and with leaders in the academic field of the visual arts
  • Familiarity with scholarly communications, streaming, and other types of real-time communications
  • Preference will be given to those with technical skills in areas that will enhance both the organizing of the meetings and with their success

Salary dependent on experience
EEOC Employer
Start date: September 1, 2015
Full-time with benefits

Please send letter of interest, CV and references to:


Filed under: Career Services

Associate Director/Director of External Communications
College Art Association
50 Broadway, Floor 21
New York, NY 10004

Under the supervision of the executive director, the associate director is responsible for developing scholarly communication strategies for CAA, and communicating with its members and to the international community of academic and museum visual arts faculty, students, and curators. The associate director will work to help CAA address the changing needs and demographics of the academic visual-arts field and to communicate the value of the Association to individuals in academia, in museums, and those who work independently. This position: 1) oversees strategic communications for social media and social communications regarding the annual conference, newsletter, website, directories of graduate programs, affiliated societies, fellowships and professional development programs; 2) stays current with issues related to communications in the visual arts in academia and art museums and recommends actions to be taken by the Association on behalf of the field; 3) represents CAA at meetings, conferences and events that promotes awareness of the Association.


  • In cooperation with the executive director and the senior staff carries out market research in the visual arts field to develop an annual strategy for scholarly communications of CAA to the visual arts field and beyond;
  • In cooperation with the executive director and senior staff determines the strategies for all communications for the association including technologies that extend the conference, websites, programs, guidelines and activities of the association;
  • Oversees the publicity strategies in concert with the executive director, senior staff and Taylor & Francis for all publications including journals, newsletter, websites, directories of graduate programs, and electronic communications;
  • Develops a communications network with the CAA affiliated societies to promote cooperative programming and support;
  • Oversees all social communications and works with CAA staff to establish strategies for maximum participation among members and related associations and stakeholders;
  • Oversees Online Career Center;
  • Stays current with the visual arts advocacy issues;
  • Prepares yearly budget forecasts and manages the communications budget;
  • Supervises the full-time newsletter editor and a full-time staff assistant.

Education and Experience

  • Terminal degree or the equivalent in communications, new media, studio art, or art history;
  • At least five years experience in academic scholarly communications or educational association communications;
  • Expertise in scholarly communications, development and design of websites, streaming, webinars, electronic publications, databases, and social communications;
  • Experience managing a major website redesign and/or implementing new technology for programming or scholarly communication systems
  • Expertise in market research and analysis, and the use of statistical databases on the visual arts field;
  • Current with trends and critical issues in academic visual arts, art museums and professional visual art associations, and learned societies.

Salary dependent on experience
EEOC Employer
Start date: June 1, 2015
Full-time with benefits

Please send letter of interest, CV and references to:


Filed under: Career Services