Archive | March, 2013

Pears, Pastimes, and People: Caricatures by Daumier and His Contemporaries

28 Mar



 April 12 – May 31, 2013

La Maison Française of New York University is pleased to present “Pears, Pastimes, and People: Caricatures by Daumier and His Contemporaries,” a survey of French lithographic production in the second quarter of the nineteenth century. The twenty-six prints exhibited, many of them hand-colored, explore a range of themes ranging from political caricature to the popular practice of satirizing social “types,” including the revolutionary war imposter and the avaricious, heartless landlord.

The production of cheap and plentiful prints was made possible by the invention of lithography around 1800. The periodicals La Silhouette (1829-1830), La Caricature (1830-1835), and Le Charivari  (1832-1937), founded by artist, writer, and entrepreneur Charles Philipon, exploited its potential for social and political commentary, despite varying degrees of censorship imposed by the reigns of King Charles X (1824-1830) and King Louis-Philippe (1830-1848). The ebb and flow of political material thus provides an analogue to the relative political suppression of the day.

Honoré Daumier, undoubtedly the best-known French caricaturist today, is represented by three works in the exhibition, including the deliciously elliptical Fac Quasi-simile (1835), in which captions describe the content of political vignettes, which, considered too explosive for publication, have been replaced with the visual equivalent of a non sequitur. The exhibition also presents the work of over a dozen of Daumier’s overlooked, but equally trenchant compatriots, including lithographs by Nicolas-Toussaint Charlet, Gavarni, and Jean-Edmé Pigal.

“Pears, Pastimes, and People” was curated by Patricia Mainardi, Christina Lau, and the students of Professor Mainardi ’s New York University Romanticism seminar. La Maison Française is open to the public Monday through Friday, 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. A digital catalogue will be available beginning 4/12 for free download; visit for details. Please contact Christina Lau at (212) 998-8752 or for more information.

This exhibition is presented with the support of the NYU Department of Art History, the Dean for Humanities, the Dean of the College of Arts and Science, and the Department of French.


DAH Professor Ken Silver at Columbia University

25 Mar

Silver Columbia

To Juniors Majoring in Art History and Urban Design and Architecture Studies:

25 Mar

Juniors who have an overall college GPA of 3.65 as well as a GPA of 3.65 in their major courses are eligible to apply for admission into the department’s honors track.

For more information on achieving department honors in Art History or Urban Design and Architecture Studies, consult the NYU Classes site titled “CAS-Art History Honors Track”. This site should be available via your NYU Home page under Academics using the “Other” tab for NYU Classes.

The Honors NYU Classes site provides instructions on how to apply for admission onto the honors track along with deadlines and other helpful information. If you have any questions, please contact Professor Dennis Geronimus ( or Professor Kathryn Smith (

The deadline for submission of all application materials via the NYU Classes site is Tuesday, March 26th at midnight.

Please note that department honors are officially conferred at graduation and are distinct from college honors (aka Latin Honors).

Alumni News, Spring 2013

25 Mar

Many thanks to all of the Art History, Urban Design and Architecture Studies, and Historical and Sustainable Architecture alumni who responded to our recent call for news.  Hearty congratulations on your splendid achievements!  It is wonderful to hear from you and to learn about your activities. We hope to hear from more of you for our next Alumni News round-up, which we’ll post sometime in Fall 2013.  Please send your news, links, photos, videos and podcasts to Professor Kathryn Smith ( with a copy to Peggy Coon ( Thank you again, and best wishes for happiness, fulfillment, and success to all!

Jongwoo Jeremy Kim (B. A., Art History ’98) earned tenure and promotion to the rank of Associate Professor at the University of Louisville (Louisville, KY).  His first book, Painted Men in Britain, 1868-1918: Royal Academicians and Masculinities (Ashgate, 2012), was recently published by Ashgate (see our Fall 2012 Alumni News post).

Christina Lau (B. A., Art History / French ’05) writes, “I’m so pleased to share that I have returned to my alma mater as an administrator at NYU’s La Maison Française on the Washington Mews. I’m looking forward to many future collaborations with the Department of Art History, and, during the current semester, I am excited to be assisting with Professor Patricia Mainardi’s Issues in International Romanticism seminar students’ print exhibition, to be mounted at the Maison in Spring 2013.” From 2005 to 2012, Christina was an associate at Lori Bookstein Fine Art in Chelsea.

Carly Jane Steinborn (B. A., Art History ’06) is finishing her doctoral dissertation, ““Transforming Sacred Space: Image and Materiality in the Orthodox Baptistery of Ravenna,” which she is writing under the supervision of Professor Erik Thunø of Rutgers University’s Department of Art History. Carly has given numerous conference papers, most drawn from her dissertation, including “Materiality in the Orthodox Baptistery of Ravenna:  Visual Effect and Meaning,” at the International Congress on Medieval Studies (Kalamazoo MI, May 2009); “The Blessed Sacraments and their Ecclesiastical Overseers:  Visualizing Salvation in a Fifteenth-Century Flemish Tapestry” (The Frick Collection, April 2010); “Sacred Space and Liturgical ‘Rebirth’: Image, Ritual, and Materiality in the Orthodox Baptistery of Ravenna” at the American Academy in Rome (April 2011); “The Orthodox Baptistery of Ravenna:  Image and Liturgy in the Fifth-Century Capital of the Roman Empire at the Intercollegiate Center for Classical Studies (Rome, September 2011); and “’Water from the rock’: The Use of Marble in Ravenna’s Bapisteries” at the Society of Architectural Historians Annual Conference (Detroit, MI; April 2012). Most recently, she delivered a paper titled “’Reformed and Reborn in the Holy Font’: Images, Materials, and Viewer Reception in the Orthodox Baptistery of Ravenna” at the annual conference of the College Art Association, held in New York from February 12-16th, 2013. In the audience were Ksenia Nouril (née Yachmetz) (B. A., Art History ’09), who is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in modern and contemporary Central and Eastern European art as a Dodge Fellow at Rutgers, as well as Professors Kathryn Smith and Dennis Geronimus, two of Carly’s former professors in the Department of Art History. All agreed that Carly’s paper was outstanding. Carly is extremely grateful to the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, which awarded her a fellowship to support her final year of dissertation-writing. (This entry was written by Professor Smith).

Ben Baccash (B. A., Urban Design and Architecture Studies ’08) reports, “I started working at Shawmut Design & Construction six months ago. I’m an Assistant Project Manager and I work for the retail group, specifically on the Apple account. We are a small-medium-size general contracting company (~600 employees with offices in Boston, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, New York, Connecticut and maybe a few others), acting as a coordinator of all of the trades and liaison between them and the client, architect and engineer. My group builds stores for most of the high-end luxury brands — Louis Vuitton, Hermes, Tom Ford, etc. While not preservation-oriented (although we do have a group that does preservation work, but I’m not part of it), I have learned TONS working here and continue to do so every day. It is extremely challenging on many levels and I feel like it is a great place to be pushed and trained and to really learn.”

Perrin Lathrop (B. A., Art History ‘09) was admitted to Princeton University’s graduate program in Art & Archaeology, where she will pursue a Ph.D. in African art.

Elliot Richman (B. A., Art History ’09) co-curated with the Archive Design Group a show titled “Larry Bell: Weightless,” which opened on December 16th, 2012 at 85 Market St. in Venice, California. Among the fourteen iconic works by Bell included in the show were one of the artist’s famous cubes and a selection of Vapor Drawings and collages. Elliot writes, “My two co-curators and I partitioned off a space in the showroom to project an Oliver Bell film about the featured works that artfully displays the marvelous effect they have on a space in early morning sunlight. The mobiles seem to burst with refracted light, rays of which illuminate surrounding walls and spin as the works move. Attendance to the opening far exceeded our expectations, and I was privileged to meet some of my favorite artists such as Ed Moses and John Mason. The most rewarding part of the process was spending time with Mr. Bell, one of those rare people who radiates goodwill and whose generosity of spirit is, thankfully, contagious.” Click here  to see the Light Knots video that was projected at the exhibition.

Larry Bell exh 1

Larry Bell exh 2

Elliot Richman and Larry Bell

Elliot Richman and Larry Bell

Beginning this fall, Beatrice Thornton (B. A., Art History / French ’09) will pursue an M. A. in the history of decorative arts, design history, and material culture at the Bard Graduate Center.  She will focus on the history of textiles and tapestry, and her studies also will incorporate her interests in the history of photography, anthropology, and archaeology. After graduating from NYU she held internships in the editorial departments of The Magazine Antiques and Modern Magazine. She is currently an administrative assistant at the Louise Bourgeois Studio in New York and is also working at the archive of the late Belgian-American artist and tapestry designer Jan Yoors.

Tara Kuruvilla (B. A., Art History ’12) graduated from NYU with a major in Art History and minor in English Literature. While a student in the Department of Art History, she worked as an assistant to our Director of Research Collections, Dr. Thomaï Serdari, and helped to catalog the materials in the H. W. Janson archive. She spent a few months after graduation in the Floater program at Sotheby’s, before moving back to India to pursue her passion for museums. She is currently a curatorial assistant at the Dr. Bhau Daji Lad Museum, Mumbai – a nineteenth-century institution that has emerged as the premier establishment for contemporary art exhibitions. Her responsibilities include assisting in installations, researching and developing wall text for exhibitions, and conducting curatorial walkthroughs of the Museum. Tara will attend Columbia University in the Fall to pursue a M.A. in Modern Art: Critical and Curatorial Studies. Her research will focus on contemporary responses in South Asian Art to nineteenth-century colonial anthropometric photography.

Annabel Wold (B. A., Art History ’12) began a new job this past November. She is now Assistant Registrar at 303 Gallery in New York.

Chad Rochkind (M.A., Historical and Sustainable Architecture ’12) reports, “I was recently hired to be the Executive Director of Detroit Harmonie, a non-profit committed to the revitalization of Detroit. My thesis played a big role in securing the job. Thanks again for conceiving of this wonderful program.”



Graduate Student Symposium in Nineteenth-Century Art

21 Mar

AHNCA logo



On March 22, NYU will host the Tenth Annual Graduate Student Symposium in Nineteenth-Century Art. The symposium is sponsored by the Association of Historians of Nineteenth-Century Art, an international organization that fosters scholarship in all areas of visual studies of the period. Visiting Professor Patricia Mainardi is the Program Coordinator for AHNCA, and has arranged for the event to be held here, in the Department of Art History, this year. In a day of formal presentations and informal discussion, graduate students share their dissertation research with a wide audience. NYU is always well-represented – this year with two students from IFA – but the program itself varies from year to year in terms of national representation and topics. Many of the earliest participants are now professors of art history themselves, and the audience always includes several alums from previous symposia. One feature that has, no doubt, contributed to its prestige of the symposium is the $1000 award donated annually by the Dahesh Museum, combined with the opportunity to publish the prize-winning paper inNineteenth-Century Art Worldwide, the online peer-reviewed journal of the Association. The symposium is free, open to the public, and no reservations are required. The program is available at here.

Complimentary Tickets Available to NYU Students for Gulam Mohammed Sheikh Lecture at the Rubin Museum

18 Mar

Please show your NYU ID at the admissions desk at the main entrance of the museum before the lecture. There are 20 complimentary tickets available!




Asia Week

Congratulations to DAH, Administrative Secretary, Joshua Kwassman

12 Mar



Josh’s album, Songs of the Brother Spirit, is being released today. Josh is an award-winning composer and artist. Please join us in congratulating him on yet another musical accomplishment.  Read reviews of the album here, here, and here!