Published 03/28/19

Wittenborn2018

The exhibition catalog, Howardena Pindell: What Remains to Be Seen, has been recognized by the Art Libraries Society of North America (ARLIS/NA) for excellence in art publishing. Authors Naomi Beckwith and Valerie Cassel Oliver accepted the 40th Annual Wittenborn Book Award at a ceremony during the society’s annual conference held this year in Salt Lake City. 

Howardena Pindell: What Remains to Be Seen, by co-curators Naomi Beckwith, Marilyn and Larry Fields Curator at the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, and Valerie Cassel Oliver, Sydney and Frances Lewis Family Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, accompanies the exhibition of the same name, the first major survey of Howardena Pindell’s 50 years of work. This timely and important volumeexemplifies the Wittenborn Award ethos through its originality, significance, and scholarly excellence.

Art critic Lori Waxman wrote glowingly of the exhibition in the Chicago Tribune: “Some art exhibitions are also lessons in the history of art. ‘Howardena Pindell: What Remains To Be Seen’ … provides so many it’s hard to believe they stem from just one show and person.” The richness of material and unique points of view enhances this beautiful and multi-textured catalog, which successfully captures the wide range of Pindell’s art, activism, and advocacy. In addition to numerous scholarly essays, the catalogue includes the full exhibition checklist with thumbnail reproductions of each work, a roundtable discussion on creative collectives, interviews with the artist, and important writings from Pindell’s archives. Particularly notable is the catalog’s distinctive approach to the artist’s chronology, relating world and cultural events to her work, starting as far back as 1526. Full-page detail images and lush spreads of selected artworks provide a sense of the tactility of her practice.  

We would also like to acknowledge as an honorable mention another exceptional exhibition catalogue: Between Worlds: The Art of Bill Traylor by Leslie Umberger, Smithsonian American Art Museum & Princeton University Press, 2018.

Established in 1980, the Wittenborn Award honors the memory of George Wittenborn, a premier New York art book dealer and publisher.

The Wittenborn Award was presented at ARLIS/NA’s 47th annual conference held in Salt Lake City, March 26-30, 2019. The members of the 2018 ARLIS/NA George Wittenborn Memorial Book Award Sub-Committee were: Maggie Portis (Chair), Michael Carter, Ian McDermott, Walter Schlect, and Emily Walz.