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Image courtesy Bend Design Conference.

Please join us for a Memorial Celebration for Professor Victor Margolin during the 2020 Annual Conference on February 12, 2020.

Memorial Celebration for Professor Victor Margolin

Wednesday, February 12, 2020
5:30-7:30 pm
Resident’s Dining Room
Jane Addams Hull House
800 S. Halsted Street
Chicago, Illinois

If you’d like to attend, please RSVP to Rebecca Houze: rhouze@niu.edu

Victor Margolin (1941-2019) was Professor Emeritus of Design History at the University of Illinois at Chicago. He served on the CAA Board of Directors from 1993 to 1997 and was a frequent presenter and session chair at CAA’s Annual Conferences. He promoted the study of design and design history by encouraging the work of others and contributing to the activities of the Design Studies Forum. He was honored with Lifetime Achievement Awards for design research from LearnXDesign (2015) and the Design Research Society (2016). Victor was a founding editor of the academic design journal Design Issues. Books that he has written, edited, or co-edited include The Struggle for Utopia: Rodchencko, Lissitzky, Moholy-Nagy, 1917-1936Design DiscourseThe Designed World: Images, Objects, Environments; and The Politics of the Artificial: Essays on Design and Design Studies. He also edited and co-edited important volumes of essays on design titled Design Discourse (1989), The Idea of Design (1995) Discovering Design (1995) and The Designed World: Images, Objects, Environments (2002). The first two volumes of his World History of Design were published in April 2015.

In the words of his colleague and co-editor Bruce Brown, “Victor was a man of immense intellectual generosity and he mentored scholars young and old around the world. He was always a reasoned advocate of design as a tool to create societies that were more just, equitable and compassionate. These values were accompanied by a keen mind and twinkling eye that drew Victor to people all over the world. His deep humanity, ideas and insights will live on through books and essays to inspire future generations of designers.”

The Jane Addams Hull-House Museum is located on the campus of the University of Illinois at Chicago, 800 S. Halsted Street, Chicago. It is easily reached by public transportation using the UIC Halsted stop on the Blue Line or the Halsted Bus (#8), or via the Eisenhower Expressway (I-290) and the Dan Ryan Expressway (I-90). Parking is available at the Halsted and Taylor Street garage.

Filed under: Annual Conference, Design, Obituaries

Jack Hyland, CAA’s treasurer and close advisor for over 30 years, passed away suddenly on Friday, August 11, 2017. The CAA staff, board, and committees are saddened by this monumental loss. Hyland began his career in investment banking at major financial services firms, including Morgan Stanley, Warburg Paribas Becker, and PaineWebber/Young & Rubicam Ventures. In 2010, he founded Media Advisory Partners with several partners. Hyland was a strident advocate for CAA, ensuring the financial health of the organization and guiding it with sound input and wisdom through three decades.

Hyland was the author of two notable books, Evangelism’s First Modern Media Star, The Life of Reverend Bill Stidger and The Moses Virus. In the former title, Hyland examined the life of his grandfather, the famous preacher, Bill Stidger, who foresaw the possibilities of modern-day media to expand evangelical work. His second book, The Moses Virus, is a fictional thriller set in Rome.

Hyland was born in 1938 in Detroit, Michigan. He majored in Theoretical Physics at Williams College, graduating in 1959; and from Harvard Business School, graduating in 1961.

In addition to serving CAA, Hyland was Co-Chair of the Board of Trustees of Teachers College, Columbia University. He was also Chairman Emeritus of the American Academy in Rome; and Vice President and Director of the Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute. Formerly, he was also a Trustee and Treasurer of the National Building Museum in Washington.

We offer our condolences to his partner, Larry Wente; to his former wife, Karen Conant Hyland; to his children, Liza, Jonathan and Susannah, and grandchildren.

Filed under: Board of Directors, Obituaries

We were very sad to learn of the early and sudden passing of CAA Board Member Dina Bangdel. Dina, who was a long-standing member of CAA, joined our Board of Directors in 2016. Prior to that, she was on CAA’s Nominating Committee and served as the Board liaison to the Education Committee. In addition, Dina was active in the Student and Emerging Professionals Committee (SEPC) and the Committee on Women in the Arts (CWA). She is survived by her husband, Dr. Bibhakar Shakya, and her children, Deven and Neal.

Dina was Director of the Art History Department at Virginia Commonwealth University in Qatar. A more complete obituary can be found here.

In addition, here is a wonderful interview with her.

We will all miss her warm smile and thoughtful participation at CAA.

To send condolences to her family:

Dr. Bibhakar Shakya
3029 Crossfield Road
Richmond, VA 23233

Lloyd Engelbrech: In Memoriam

posted by February 06, 2017

Professor Emeritus, Dr. Lloyd Engelbrecht (1927–2016), died peacefully in his sleep in hospice on New Year’s Eve after battling neuroendocrine cancer for half a year. He was a beloved faculty member of the Art History program at the University of Cincinnati, 1980–2001, where he taught the history of design, and modern art and architecture, and mentored twenty-four M.A. advisees.

He was the author of the first comprehensive, fully-documented biography of László Moholy-Nagy, Moholy-Nagy: Mentor to Modernism (Flying Trapeze Press, 2009) and, with his wife June Engelbrecht, the award-winning biography, Henry C. Trost, Architect of the Southwest (El Paso Library Association, 1981). Together, they also created a catalogue raisonné of the work of Trost and his family firm of Trost & Trost. Additionally, Engelbrecht published essays in Taken by Design: Photographs from the Institute of Design, 1937–1971 (U of Chicago Press, 2002), Best of Triglyph (Arizona State U Press, 2002), The Old Guard and the Avant-Garde: Modernism in Chicago, 1910-1940 (U of Chicago Press, 1990), and 50 Jahre New Bauhaus (Bauhaus-Archiv, 1987). Recently, he was working on a biography of Chicago’s first Modernist painter, Rudolph Weisenborn (1881–1974). Engelbrecht’s publications concerned the influence of the German Bauhaus in the U.S., and he helped mount exhibitions in both American and European museums.

Engelbrecht’s degrees were AB in General Studies, University of California, Berkeley, 1950; MS, Library Science, Columbia University, 1951; and an interdisciplinary doctorate from the Committee on History of Culture at the University of Chicago, University of Chicago, 1973. Engelbrecht received grants from the Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts and from the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Engelbrecht was a remarkably kind, generous, and positive man who will be missed by his two daughters, Khadija Engelbrecht Fouad and Julie Rowlands, and their husbands, Aladdin Fouad and David Rowlands, four grandchildren, Omar Fouad, Maryam Fouad, Ibrahim Fouad, and Hussain Fouad, and numerous friends, as well as many devoted former students. He was predeceased by his wife June-Marie Fink Engelbrecht.

Filed under: Obituaries

Former CAA President Marvin Eisenberg Dies

posted by June 06, 2016

Marvin Eisenberg, professor of history of art at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor and president of the CAA Board of Directors from 1968 to 1970, died on May 18, 2016. He was 93 years old.

In 1943 Eisenberg earned a BA from the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, after serving in the Army Signal Corps during World War II. Upon earning both an MFA and PhD from Princeton University in Princeton, New Jersey, he began teaching at Michigan, where he worked for his entire career. Eisenberg won CAA’s Distinguished Teaching of Art History Award in 1987. He retired in 1989.

Read more about Eisenberg’s life and career on the website of the University of Michigan’s College of Literature, Science, and the Arts.

Marilyn Stokstad Has Died

posted by March 07, 2016

Marilyn Stokstad, a distinguished art historian and president of the CAA Board of Directors from 1978 to 1980, has died. She was 87 years old.

Stokstad was a professor in the Department of Art History at the University of Kansas in Lawrence, where she began her career in 1958. She also served as the director of the KU Museum of Art (now the Spencer Museum of Art) at her school from 1961 to 1968. Though Stokstad retired in the early 2000s, she remained active in the field.

Stokstad was a long-time CAA supporter, giving at the Patron level for many years, and attended and presented at numerous Annual Conferences. In addition to her widely known textbook Art History, she contributed four articles to Art Journal. Additional books by Stokstad are listed on Amazon.

Filed under: Obituaries, Uncategorized

Laurie Schneider Adams: In Memoriam

posted by October 23, 2015

Laurie Schneider Adams, a scholar of Italian Renaissance art and in the application of psychoanalytic theory to art history, died on June 19, 2015, at the age of 73.

Adams, who earned her PhD at Columbia University, joined the faculty of the newly established John Jay College, City University of New York, in 1966. She taught there and at the Graduate Center until 2011. Adams was the author of many books, including A History of Western Art, Art across Time, The Methodologies of Art, Art and Psychoanalysis, and Italian Renaissance Art. She was the editor-in-chief of the journal Source: Notes in the History of Art from 1984 until earlier this year.

The East Hampton Star has also published an obituary for Adams.

Filed under: Obituaries

Pamela Z. Blum: In Memoriam

posted by October 23, 2015

Pamela Z. Blum, a historian of medieval art noted for her innovative iconographical and archeological work distinguishing original from restored sculpture at the Royal Abbey Church of Saint-Denis in Paris, and for her contributions to studies of the provenance of limestone used in medieval sculpture, died on August 6, 2015, in North Branford, Connecticut. She was 92. The cause of death was a sudden, undefined cardiovascular event.

Blum became an art historian relatively late in life. She was a homemaker for twenty-four years before she discovered her calling in the churches of East Anglia while spending a year in Cambridge. Her interest in medieval art grew from making rubbings of the commemorative brass plaques in the surrounding churches into a serious intellectual pursuit inspired by the medieval art-history lectures of Nikolaus Pevsner at Cambridge University. Blum enrolled in Yale University Graduate School in 1968 at the age of 45, obtained an MA and an MPhil, and was awarded a PhD in history of art in 1978.

Blum established her reputation at the Royal Abbey Church of Saint-Denis in France. Using a toothbrush and camera, she worked high up on scaffolding erected along the abbey’s façades to reveal, distinguish, and document the original from the restored elements of the sculpture there. She continued to study and publish her findings on the Royal Abby throughout her career, including codirected studies sponsored by the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York on the provenance of limestone used in medieval sculpture. These studies were noted for their intellectually stimulating collaborations among scientists, archeologists, and art historians.

She edited and contributed to the book The Royal Abbey of Saint-Denis: From Its Beginning to the Death of Suger, 475–1151 and authored Early Gothic Saint-Denis: Restorations and Survivals. She wrote or cowrote articles such as “Fingerprinting the Stone at Saint-Denis: A Pilot Study” (Gesta) and“The Sculptures of the Salisbury Chapter-house” (Salisbury Cathedral Medieval Publications Art and Architecture),among many other articles that appeared in Gesta and CAA’s Art Journal, and in commemorative compendiums honoring her mentor, Sumner McKnight Crosby.

Blum taught at many institutions throughout her career, among them Columbia University, the International Center for Medieval Art at the Cloisters, Wesleyan University, and Yale University. Other positions included Miriam Sacher Visiting Fellow at St. Hilda’s College in Oxford, England.

Throughout her life Blum supported significant numbers of environmental and humanitarian causes. Kent Place School awarded her the Barbara Wright Biddison Distinguished Alumna Award in 2010. She was also an active alumna of Smith College and a vital member of New Haven’s intellectual community.

Blum was born in 1923 in Jersey City, New Jersery, to William A. Zink and the former Marjorie Powell. She attended Kent Place School in Summit, New Jersery, and graduated cum laude from Smith College in 1943, on an accelerated wartime program, with a BA in economics. She married John M. Blum in 1944. They were married for sixty-seven years when he died in 2011. She is survived by three children—Ann of Arlington, Massachusetts; Pamela of Kingston, New York; and Thomas of Dobbs Ferry, New York—and three grandchildren.

Published on October 23, 2015.

Filed under: Obituaries

Piotr Piotrowski: In Memoriam

posted by July 22, 2015

Amy Bryzgel is lecturer in history of art in the School of Divinity, History, and Philosophy at the University of Aberdeen in Scotland.

The field of art history and culture in Central and Eastern Europe mourns the loss of its unofficial cultural ambassador: the art historian, curator, and critic Piotr Piotrowski, who died on May 3, 2015, at the age of 63. The author of numerous publications, Piotrowski was a pioneer of new methods of study and approach to the art history of the region.

Piotrowski was professor ordinarius in the Department of Art History at the Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań, Poland, where he was also chair of the department (1999–2008) and head of modern art history (1996–2009). He was director of the National Museum in Warsaw from 2009 to 2010 and served on a number of advisory boards, such as those for the National Gallery of Prague (academic board), Ars (Slovak Academy of Sciences), and Art Margins (MIT Press, editorial board). Piotrowski was also a permanent research fellow of the Graduate School for East and South-East European Studies, a program of Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich and Regensburg University. In 2010 he was given the Igor Zabel Award for Culture and Theory, which acknowledges the dedication of an arts and culture professional to deepening and broadening internationally the knowledge of visual art and culture in Central, Eastern and South Eastern Europe. He held numerous academic fellowships, from the Clark Art Institute in Massachusetts (2009), CASVA in Washington, DC (1989–90), and most recently the Getty Research Institute in Los Angeles (2015). Piotrowski’s most recent books, In the Shadow of Yalta: Art and the Avant-Garde in Eastern Europe, 1945–1989 (Reaktion Books, 2009) and Art and Democracy in Post-Communist Europe (Reaktion Books, 2012), have set the standard for comparative studies of modern and contemporary art in East Central Europe. Both are key texts not only in the field of Central and East European art history, but also for art history in general.

Piotrowski’s contributions to the field, however, go well beyond his substantial and impressive list of accomplishments. He was one of the guiding forces in the field of Central and Eastern European art history. His publications are at the forefront of the academic study and research of an area that had largely been neglected by Western scholars throughout the Cold War and is only recently expanding from its previously self-contained national histories. What’s more, Piotrowski’s project didn’t just unearth these practices and expose them to the West; in writing these histories he also criticized the so-called universal canon of art history, offering a view from “the margins” to “expose fractures within center,” to use his words. His project was to subvert the traditional geography of art, calling for a horizontal approach that would eventually contribute to the globalization of Eastern European art and help to develop a true global art history.

Those who knew Piotrowski remember his warmth and generosity and his quick, infectious sense of humor. Regardless of the situation, his personality always shined through—despite being a man of considerable achievements, publications, and awards, he was incredibly humble. Furthermore, he was extremely dedicated to the field and to his work and uncompromising in his principles, regardless of the cost to him personally or professionally. In October 2014, he organized a large and very successful conference in Lublin, Poland, entitled “East European Art Seen from the Global Perspective: Past and Present,” and was working to produce the conference reader up until his death.

All who knew his work agree on one thing: Piotr Piotrowski left us far too soon. Most of us expected to look forward to many more years of his talks, publications, exhibitions, and projects. One small bright spot we can look forward to is his forthcoming publication, From Museum Critique to the Critical Museum, edited with Katarzyna Murawska-Muthesius and published by Ashgate. Furthermore, it must be remembered that Piotrowski was a teacher—not only to his many undergraduate, postgraduate, and PhD students, but also to those who read his work and followed his example. Piotrowski taught us all very much, and in our future work, we can only hope to insure that his spirit will live on.

Filed under: Obituaries

John Wesley William: In Memoriam

posted by July 20, 2015

Julie Harris earned her PhD in art history at the University of Pittsburgh in 1989. She teaches at the Spertus Institute for Jewish Learning and Leadership.

There was little in John Williams’s early life to suggest that he would eventually become the world’s authority on Spanish medieval art—unless one considers a boundless energy and curiosity that propelled him from an athletic childhood in Memphis, through a canoe trip down the Mississippi, service in the Marines, and eventually led him to study at Duke, Yale, and University of Michigan—where he discovered Spanish medieval art and earned a PhD in 1962. A scholar of international reputation, inspiring teacher, and family man, Williams died on June 6, 2015. He was 87 years old.

Williams taught first at Swarthmore College from 1960 until 1972. He then joined the Fine Arts Department of the University of Pittsburgh, where he remained for thirty-five years. At Pitt, Williams served as chair for five years, was named Distinguished Service Professor in 1993, and was Andrew W. Mellon Professor of History of Art and Architecture from 1997 to 2000. Among the many honors he received in his career were two Fulbrights to Spain, two NEH grants, a Guggenheim Fellowship, a visiting membership at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, and an appointment as a fellow of the Medieval Academy of America.

Best known for his work on the Beatus Commentaries, Williams’s work evolved from searching for models for these manuscripts’ rich and enigmatic imagery to recognizing the individuals responsible for their creation and a careful reading of their reception. His five-volume series, The Illustrated Apocalypse: A Corpus of the Illustrations of the Commentary on the Apocalypse (Harvey Miller, 1994–2003), won the Eleanor Tufts Award from the American Society for Hispanic Art Historical Studies. Williams’s interests and research were not limited to manuscript studies; he also was an authority on the major Romanesque monuments of Spain, such as San Isidoro in León, Santo Domingo de Silos, and Santiago de Compostela. He participated in rigorous international debates over their dating, patronage, and the meaning of their decoration in all media. This work generated groundbreaking and authoritative publications in such journals as The Art Bulletin and Gesta and in collaborative volumes, some of which he edited or coedited.

John’s life-long interest in Spain did not end with his retirement from the University of Pittsburgh in 2000. In addition to ongoing work in medieval art, he recently turned his attention to securing the attribution of a neglected Goya in the Carnegie Institute. A documentary project on the Beatus manuscripts, directed and produced by Murray Grigor and the cinematographer Hamid Shams with commentary by Williams, premiered in New York at the Morgan Library and Museum last October. Even as his illness progressed, he remained engaged in academic pursuits. Determined to complete his book, he enlisted the help of a former student, Therese Martin of Madrid (CCHS-CSIC). The resulting work, Visions of the End in Medieval Spain: Tradition and Context of the Beatus Commentary on the Apocalypse, with a Census of Illustrated Manuscripts and Study of the Geneva Beatus (forthcoming from Amsterdam University Press, 2016), both introduces a recently discovered manuscript and offers Williams an opportunity to update and reassess his earlier work on the Beatus corpus.

Williams had a gift for synthetic scholarship, revealing connections across the Pyrenees and across disciplines in a way that made his art-historical analysis deep and utterly unique. Four students—Martin, David Raizman, Ann Boylan, and myself—wrote their dissertations on Spanish medieval topics under his supervision. Both as his student and in later years, I found that John’s authoritative writing and speaking style made me believe that what he was doing—and by extension what I doing—was important. John was a demanding and thorough adviser who became a delightful friend. He had little sympathy for trendy jargon but plenty of interest in new ideas. I never stopped sending him my work or seeking his approval.

A relentlessly productive scholar, Williams will also be remembered as a person of varied interests, including but not limited to fine books and martinis, music of many genres, good conversation, and the dance at Kalamazoo. He is survived by his wife, Mary; their six children; and thirteen grandchildren.

Filed under: Obituaries