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Frank Jewett Mather Award

The Frank Jewett Mather Award, first presented in 1963 for art journalism, is named in honor of the art critic, teacher, and scholar who was affiliated with Princeton University until his death in 1953. It is awarded for significant published art criticism that has appeared in publication in a one-year period; the 2017 award year is September 1, 2015–August 31, 2016. The Mather award may be given for work that originated before the indicated period provided that such work extends into the award period.

2016 Winner

Chika Okeke-Agulu
Postcolonial Modernism: Art and Decolonization in Twentieth-Century Nigeria

This book is a significant and pioneering analysis of “postcolonial modernism” in the African context of Nigeria, especially of the 1960s, and is an important contribution to the historicization of contemporary art.  Okeke-Agulu has written extensive criticism around contemporary African art and offers a model of art criticism of historically underrepresented regions (Sub Saharan Africa), with attention to postcolonial theory, globalization, and African modernism. This book is the first critical art historical study of African art in the context of contemporary political developments. Despite our so-called global thinking, it is still rare to see modernism applied to art that is not Western.  The Mather Award would help encourage other close analytical examinations of African art and might help normalize such a juxtaposition.

Jury: Julie Codell, Arizona State University, chair; T.J. Demos, University of California, Santa Cruz; and Josephine Gear, New York University.

Past Winners

The Frank Jewett Mather Award has been presented to many well-known art critics and writers. In the 1960s, awards were presented to Max Kozloff, Barbara Rose, and Clement Greenberg, while Lawrence Alloway, Rosalind Krauss, and Lucy R. Lippard were recipients in the 1970s. The Mather awards of the 1980s were given to Robert Hughes, Leo Steinberg, and Douglas Crimp, among others, followed by Eleanor Heartney, Arthur C. Danto, and Christopher Knight in the 1990s. In 2009, Boris Groys was honored for his essays in Art Power, which address curatorship and criticism of modern and contemporary art in public venues.

2014 T. J. Demos

Jury: Peter Chametzky, University of South Carolina, chair; Julie Codell, Arizona State University; and Terry Smith, University of Pittsburgh

2013 Hal Foster and Claire Bishop

Jury: Florencia Bazzano-Nelson, Smithsonian American Art Museum, chair; Peter Chametzky, Southern Illinois University; and Terry Smith, University of Pittsburgh

2012 David Antin

Jury: Florencia Bazzano-Nelson, Tulane University, chair; Peter Chametzky, Southern Illinois University; and Terry Smith, University of Pittsburgh

2011 Luis Camnitzer

Jury: Paul Krainak, Bradley University, chair; Peter Frank, THE Magazine; and Florencia Bazzano-Nelson, Tulane University

2010 Terry Smith

Jury: Alejandro Anreus, William Paterson University; Peter Frank, THE Magazine; and Paul Krainak, Bradley University

2009 Boris Groys

Jury: Peter Frank, Riverside Art Museum; Paul Krainak, Bradley University; and Alejandro Anreus, William Paterson University

2008 Chris Kraus

Jury: Charles Reeve, Ontario College of Art and Design, chair; Alejandro Anreus, William Paterson University; Charles Hagen, University of Connecticut, Storrs; and Catherine Lord, University of California, Irvine

2007 Jerry Saltz

Jury: Charles Reeve, Ontario College of Art and Design, chair; Charles Hagen, University of Connecticut, Storrs; and Catherine Lord, University of California, Irvine

2006 Gregg Bordowitz and Okwui Enwezor

Jury: James Meyer, Emory University, chair; Charles Hagen, University of Connecticut; Catherine Lord, University of California, Irvine; and Charles Reeve, Ontario College of Art and Design

2005 Garth Clark

Committee: Sue Taylor, Portland State University, chair; Janet Koplos, Art in America; James Meyer, Emory University; and Greg Sholette, independent artist and writer

2004 Guerrilla Girls

Committee: James Yood, Northwestern University, chair; Janet Koplos, Art in America; Gregory Sholette, School of the Art Institute of Chicago; and Sue Taylor, Portland State University

2003 Roberta Smith

Committee: W. Jackson Rushing, University of Houston, chair; Gregory Sholette, School of the Art Institute of Chicago; Sue Taylor, Portland State University; and James Yood, Northwestern University

2002 Arlene Raven

Committee: Jonathan Katz, State University of New York, Stony Brook, chair; Joanna Frueh, University of Nevada, Reno; W. Jackson Rushing, University of Houston; and James Yood, Northwestern University

2001 Peter Halley

Committee: Jonathan Katz, State University of New York, Stony Brook, chair; Joanna Frueh, University of Nevada, Reno; Amelia Jones, University of California, Riverside; and W. Jackson Rushing, University of Houston

2000 Moira Roth and Catherine Lord

Committee: Jonathan Katz, City College of San Francisco, chair; Joanna Frueh, University of Nevada, Reno; Amelia Jones, University of California, Riverside; and Joseph Mashek

1999 Mira Schor

Committee: Amelia Jones, University of California, Riverside, chair; Richard Martin, Metropolitan Museum of Art; Joseph Masheck, Hofstra University; and John Hallmark Neff, Terra Museum of American Art

1998 Jeremey Gilbert-Rolfe

John Hallmark Neff, Terra Museum of American Art, chair; Dave Hickey, University of Nevada; and Joseph Masheck, independent critic

1997 Christopher Knight

Committee: Suzanne Muchnic, Los Angeles Times, chair; Dave Hickey; and Lowery Stokes Sims, Metropolitan Museum of Art

1996 Arthur C. Danto

Committee: Frances Colpitt, University of Texas at San Antonio, chair; David Carrier, Carnegie Mellon University; Thomas McEvilley, Artforum; and Suzanne Muchnic, Los Angeles Times

1995 Jan Avgikos

Committee: Frances Colpitt, University of Texas at San Antonio, chair; David Carrier, Carnegie Mellon University; Victor Margolin, University of Illinois, Chicago; and Suzanne Muchnic, Los Angeles Times

1994 Dave Hickey

Committee: Victor Margolin, University of Illinois, Chicago, chair; David Carrier, Carnegie Mellon University; Frances Colpitt, University of Texas; and Joan Hugo, California Institute of the Arts

1993 Thomas McEvilley

Committee: Lowery Stokes Sims, Metropolitan Museum of Art, chair; Joan Hugo, California Institute of the Arts; and Victor Margolin, University of Illinois, Chicago

1992 Shifra Goldman and Eleanor Heartney

Committee: Lowery Stokes Sims, Metropolitan Museum of Art, chair; Joan Hugo, California Institute of the Arts; and John Kissick, Pennsylvania State University

1991 Lowery Stokes Sims

Committee: Jonathan Fineberg, University of Illinois, chair; Shifra Goldman, Rancho Santiago College; and Patricia Mathews, Oberlin College

1990 Martha Gever and Jan Zita Grover

Committee: Douglas Crimp, chair; Hunter Drohojowska; and Xenia Zed

1989 Douglas Crimp

Committee: Robert Storr, chair; Yve-Alain Bois; and Arlene Raven

1988 Germano Celant

Committee: Susan Larsen, chair; and Thomas McEvilley

1987 Carter Ratcliff

Committee: Ruth Weisberg, University of Southern California, chair; Franz Schulz, Lake Forest College; and Joan Marter

1986 Benjamin H. D. Buchloh

Committee: Melinda Wortz, chair; William Olander; and Moira Roth

1985 Robert Hughes

Committee: Jane Livingston, chair; Robert Berlind; Jonathan Fineberg, University of Illinois

1984 Leo Steinberg

Committee: Janet Kardon, chair; Brenda Richardson; John Russell

1983 Donald Kuspit

Committee: Jeanne Siegel, chair; Brian O’Doherty; and Dianne Vanderlip

1982 Robert Hughes

Committee: Kirk Varnedoe, Institute of Fine Arts, New York University, chair; Jan Butterfield; and Amy Newman

1981 Robert Rosenblum

Committee: Franz Schulz, Lake Forest College; Linda Cathcart; and Peter Schjeldahl

1980 Peter Schjeldahl

Committee: Alfred Frankenstein, chair; Linda Nochlin, Vassar College; and Robert Rosenblum

1979 John Russell

Committee: Alfred Frankenstein, chair; Linda Nochlin, Vassar College; and Robert Rosenblum

1978 Linda Nochlin

Committee: Elizabeth Baker, chair; Lucy R. Lippard; and Alfred Frankenstein

1977 Amy Goldin

Committee: Irving Sandler, State University of New York, Purchase, chair; Elizabeth Baker; and Lucy R. Lippard

1976 Elizabeth Baker

Committee: Tom Hess, chair; Wayne Anderson; and Irving Sandler, State University of New York, Purchase

1975 Lucy R. Lippard

Committee: Tom Hess, chair; Wayne Anderson; and Irving Sandler, State University of New York, Purchase

1974 Lincoln Kirstein

Commitee: Rosalind Krauss and Margit Rowell, cochairs; Hilton Kramer; and Annette Michaelson

1973 Rosalind Krauss

Committee: Robert Rosenblum, chair; Lawrence Alloway; Elizabeth Baker; and Margit Rowell

1972 Lawrence Alloway

Committee: Shirley Blum, chair; Alfred Frankenstein; and Edward Fry

1971 Alfred Frankenstein

Committee: Barbara Rose, chair; Shirley Blum; and Robert Rosenblum

1970 Barbara Rose

Committee: Martin L. Friedman; Donald Judd; and Robert L. Herbert

1969 Clement Greenberg

Committee: Samuel J. Wagstaff Jr.; Ada Louise Huxtable;and Frederick S. Wight

1968 Ada Louise Huxtable

Committee: Milton Brown; William Seitz; and William Agee

1967 Barbara Rose

Committee: Lincoln Johnson; Ellen Johnson; Robert Goldwater; and Robert Rosenblum

1966 Max Kozloff

Committee: Charles P. Parkhurst; Frank Trapp; and Lincoln Johnson

1965 Brian O’Doherty

Committee: S. Lane Faison, Jr.; George Hamilton; and Peter Selz

1964 Creighton Gilbert and Harold Rosenberg

Committee: Arline B. Saarinen; John McAndrew; and Creighton Gilbert, Yale University

1963 Lewis Mumford and Dore Ashton

Committee: Peter H. Selz; James S. Ackerman, Harvard University; Herschel B. Chipp; Sam Hunter; and Allen S. Weller