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Article

(b Topeka, KS, April 27, 1899; d Nashville, TN, Feb 3, 1979).

American painter and illustrator. He was a leading artist of the Harlem Renaissance of the 1920s and 1930s (see African American art §I 2.). He studied at the University of Nebraska and then in Paris with Charles Despiau and Othon Friesz (1925–31). Douglas was the earliest African American artist consciously to include African imagery in his work, which emphasized the creativity and continuity of African American culture, despite slavery and segregation. He was, however, criticized by his contemporaries for his idealism. In 1934, under the sponsorship of the Public Works of Art project (see United States of America, §XII), he designed a number of murals, including four panels depicting Aspects of Negro Life for the Schomburg Library in Harlem (New York, Pub. Lib.); this work and such others as Judgment Day (1939; USA, priv. col., see exh. cat., no. 99) and Building More Stately Mansions...

Article

Revised and updated by Margaret Barlow

(b Philadelphia, PA, Jan 9, 1877; d Framingham, MA, 1968).

African American sculptor. Her long career anticipated and included the period of the Harlem Renaissance of the 1920s and early 1930s (see African American art §I 2.). Born Meta Vaux Warrick, she studied at the Pennsylvania Museum and School for Industrial Art, Philadelphia, from 1893 to 1899. This was followed by a period in Paris (1899–1902) at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts, and the Académie Colarossi, during which time one of her figures caught the eye of Auguste Rodin. She exhibited regularly at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts. Her early work, with themes of death and sorrow, was characterized by a powerful expressionism. At the Tercentennial Exposition (1907) she was awarded a gold medal for the Jamestown Tableau, a 15-piece sculpture that recorded the settlement of the black community of Jamestown in 1607. In 1909 she married Solomon Carter Fuller and settled in Framingham, MA. After the loss of her early work in a fire in ...

Article

Theresa Leininger-Miller

Resurgence in black culture, also called the New Negro Movement, which took place in the 1920s and early 1930s, primarily in Harlem, a neighborhood of the New York City borough of Manhattan, but also in major cities throughout the USA, such as Chicago, Detroit, St Louis, Philadelphia, Cleveland, Boston, Atlanta, and Washington, DC, as well as in the Caribbean and in Paris. Better known as a literary movement because of the publication of twenty-six novels, ten volumes of poetry, five Broadway plays and countless essays and short stories, the Harlem Renaissance (a term that historian John Hope Franklin coined in 1947) also produced many works of visual art, dance, and music. The term invokes a rebirth of African American creativity. Some scholars argue that the renaissance refers to ancient African cultures in Egypt, Kush, and Meroë, while others say that the rebirth dates to the 1890s when writers such as Paul Laurence Dunbar were active, although few notable works of literature by African Americans date between W. E. B. DuBois’s ...

Article

Gordon Campbell

Article

Richard Wollheim

(b Vienna, April 26, 1900; d New York, Feb 27, 1957).

American art historian and psychoanalyst of Austrian birth. He was a student of Julius von Schlosser at the University of Vienna and joined the staff of the Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna, as a curator of sculpture and applied arts. He became a leading authority on late medieval and Renaissance goldsmith work and engraved gems, and produced Meister und Meisterwerke der Steinschneidekunst in der italienischen Renaissance in 1928.

Kris became associated with the world of psychoanalysis as a result of his friendship with, and marriage in 1927 to, the daughter of Freud’s family doctor, Oscar Rie. Kris first combined art historical and psychoanalytic method in his study of the physiognomic busts of Franz-Xavier Messerschmidt, the findings of which he presented in separate papers intended for audiences of art historians or of psychoanalysts. In 1932 Kris was made an editor of Imago, the journal of applied psychoanalysis, and he started practising psychoanalysis. He continued to catalogue the goldsmith work in the Kunsthistorisches Museum and initiated two research projects bridging his two interests: one on the myth of the artist, the other on facial expression in the arts, with (respectively) ...

Article

Laurence B. Kanter and Patrick Le Chanu

American family of bankers and collectors. Philip Lehman (b New York, 9 Nov 1861; d New York, 21 March 1947) was director of Lehman Brothers, an investment banking firm, and initially began collecting early Italian Renaissance paintings. His purchases were particularly extensive between 1914 and 1920 when he bought Renaissance ceramics, furniture, tapestries, and such paintings as Memling’s Annunciation (1482; New York, Met.). Bernard Berenson numbered among his friends. Philip’s son Robert Lehman (b New York, 29 Sept 1892; d New York, 9 Aug 1969) was already an enthusiastic collector while a student at Yale University, New Haven, CT (graduated 1913). In 1928 he published a catalogue of the paintings collected by his father and became head of Lehman Brothers investment bankers. He retained this post for over 40 years, turning the firm into one of the pillars of the economy and of American culture. Its headquarters were moved in ...

Article

Edith W. Kirsch

(b Cincinnati, March 25, 1904; d Princeton, June 12, 1975).

American art historian. He was educated at the universities of Princeton (BA) and New York (MA, PhD), lecturing at the latter from 1931 to 1933. He subsequently became Lecturer and finally Professor of Fine Arts and Archaeology at Columbia University (1934–53); Professor as well as Curator of Paintings at the Fogg Museum, Harvard University (1954–8); Professor at the Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton, from 1958 to 1975. He was editor of the Art Bulletin from 1940 to 1942, an honorary trustee of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York and a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the American Philosophical Society and the Medieval Academy of America, receiving the Haskins Medal in 1953; he was also a corresponding member of a number of foreign societies, including the British Academy, the Société des Antiquaires de France and the Accademia delle Arti del Disegno, Florence. A student of ...

Article

Michael Podro and Margaret Barlow

(b Hannover, March 30, 1892; d Princeton, NJ, March 14, 1968).

German art historian, active in the USA. He wrote primarily on late medieval and Renaissance art in northern Europe and Italy, mostly, but by no means exclusively, on painting.

Panofsky’s doctoral dissertation (1915) was on the relation of Dürer’s theory of art to that in Renaissance Italy; in 1923 he and Fritz Saxl published a study of Dürer’s engraving Melencolia I. In 1926 he became the first professor of art history at the new university of Hamburg, where he was closely involved with Ernst Cassirer (1874–1945), the professor of philosophy, and with Saxl and Aby Warburg at the Bibliothek Warburg. Panofsky’s name is often narrowly associated with the search for the subject-matter of paintings through reference to traditional imagery and literature. However, his writing always involved a much more ambitious and coherent mode of critical interpretation: he sought consistently to place individual works of art in relation to what he took to be an underlying aspect of the human situation, the reciprocity between ‘objectivity’—our receptive relation to the external world—and ‘subjectivity’—the constructive activity of our thought....

Article

S. J. Vernoit

(b New York, Aug 22, 1913; d New York, May 26, 1987).

American psychiatrist and collector. He began to collect art after graduating from medical school and during the 1940s sought medieval and early Renaissance paintings as well as Impressionist and Post-Impressionist works. He also actively supported contemporary American painters. In 1950 he began to collect Asian art. At first interested in Chinese ceramics, he later turned also to Chinese bronzes, jades and sculptures, as well as to Near Eastern and Indian sculptures and paintings. He bequeathed a vast proportion of his Asian collections to the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, DC, where he assisted with funding the construction of the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery. The Gallery, which contains Sackler’s Chinese, South Asian, South-east Asian and West Asian collections, constitutes the basis of the museum’s holdings of Asian Art. He died a few months before the Gallery was opened to the public.

Obituary, New York Times (27 May 1987)R. W. Bagley: Shang Ritual Bronzes in the Arthur M. Sackler Collections...

Article

Jennifer Wingate

(b Terre Haute, IN, Oct 27, 1873; d Rockport, MA, June 9, 1940).

American sculptor, active also in France. Scudder developed a lively style influenced by antique and Renaissance statuary as well as by the animated figurative work of Frederick William MacMonnies . The carefree spirit of her sculpture suited the tastes of wealthy Americans who ordered her bronzes for the grounds of their country estates, and her fountains helped garden sculpture achieve a new level of prestige. She had one of the most successful careers of any woman artist of the early 20th century.

A student of modest means, Scudder learned the practical trade of wood carving at the Cincinnati Academy of Art and briefly carved decorations for a Chicago furniture factory. Her first breakthrough came when Lorado Taft hired her as an assistant at the 1893 Chicago World’s Columbian Exposition. Her experience as one of Taft’s “White Rabbits” (as Taft’s female sculpture assistants at the fair were known), gave her the training and financial means to travel to Paris where she secured a coveted position in MacMonnies’s studio. She bought a house at Ville d’Avrya outside of Paris in ...

Article

Mode of pictorial Illusionism in which images are rendered so realistically as to deceive the eye. Practiced in Europe since the Renaissance, trompe l’oeil (Fr.: “fool the eye”) representation enjoyed two phases of popularity in the United States: first, during the late 18th to early 19th century, when in Philadephia members of the Peale family, together with artists including drawing masters and cartographers, produced trompe l’oeil paintings and drawings for exhibition at the nation’s earliest public art exhibitions; and second, during the late 19th century, when the still-life painter William Michael Harnett sparked an enthusiastic revival of trompe l’oeil. Often the conceptual themes and iconographies of these works concerned broader cultural issues of perception and representation, encouraging socio-historical interpretations.

American trompe l’oeil artists looked to European precedents for their work but also introduced novel subjects and compositions. In so doing, they recycled the particular set of formal conventions that trompe l’oeil...

Article

Jaynie Anderson

(b Berlin, May 14, 1900; d London, Sept 12, 1971).

German art historian active in Germany, the USA, and England. His work transcends the conventional categories of academic specialization, combining philosophical and aesthetic insight with a sensitive eye and an exceptional range of historical and literary learning. He studied Classics, philosophy, and art history in Berlin, Freiburg, and Vienna, obtaining his DPhil in 1922 in Hamburg under Erwin Panofsky with a thesis on the relation between aesthetic appreciation and historical scholarship. The neo-Kantian influence of Ernst Cassirer in Hamburg was soon superseded by the pragmatism of Charles S. Pierce, which he encountered while teaching philosophy at North Carolina (1925–7). On his return to Hamburg as research assistant at the Bibliothek Warburg, this pragmatism was infused with Aby Warburg’s concept of cultural history, interest in the psychological potency of images, and fascination with significant detail. The close relationship between the two men is documented in Warburg’s diaries. After submitting his anti-Kantian treatise, ...

Article

( Aspacio )

(b Cairo, IL, Aug 26, 1900; d New York, NY, Sept 6, 1980).

American painter, printmaker, and teacher . He was a leading artist of the Harlem Renaissance ( see African American art §I 2. ) and studied at the John Herron Institute, Indianapolis, the school of the Fogg Art Museum, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA, and the Académie Scandinave and the Académie Moderne, Paris. He also worked with Henry Ossawa Tanner in Paris (1931) and studied mural painting with Diego Rivera in Mexico City (1936). From the European schools he learnt strong composition and the narrative power of Goya. He was concerned to amplify the problems of Black Americans, and his murals (influenced by Rivera) carry sharp commentaries on subjects such as the poor social conditions of his compatriots and forebears in Georgia, the Amistad slave uprising and the creation of Talladega College (e.g. the Amistad Murals, Talladega College, AL). In the South, Woodruff discovered and taught several talented artists including ...