December 11, 2023
6:30 - 8PM ET
In-person and livestreamed
The New School, the Auditorium at 66 West 12th Street
Click here to Register
AICA-USA is pleased to announce that writer and curator Valerie Cassel Oliver will deliver the 17th annual AICA-USA Distinguished Critic Lecture, presented in partnership with the Vera List Center for Art and Politics at The New School.
The AICA-USA Distinguished Critic Lecture at The New School is an annual event during which an exemplary writer addresses seminal issues in contemporary art criticism. Previous lecturers have been Siddhartha Mitter, Legacy Russell, Carolina A. Miranda, Courtney J. Martin, Aruna D’Souza, Paul Chaat Smith, Negar Azimi, Naomi Beckwith, Carolyn Christov-Bakargiev, Lucy Lippard, Michelle Kuo, Peter Schjeldahl, Holland Cotter, Roberta Smith, Linda Nochlin, and Michael Brenson. Videos of previous lectures can be found here.
Valerie Cassel Oliver is the Sydney and Frances Lewis Family Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts. Prior to her position at the VMFA, she was Senior Curator at the Contemporary Arts Museum Houston. Over the past two decades, Cassel Oliver has organized numerous exhibitions including the acclaimed Double Consciousness: Black Conceptual Art Since 1970 (2005); Radical Presence: Black Performance in Contemporary Art (2012) and major survey exhibitions for Donald Moffett; Benjamin Patterson, Jennie C. Jones, Angel Otero and Annabeth Rosen.
Her debut at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts was the critically acclaimed retrospective entitled, Howardena Pindell: What Remains to be Seen co organized with Naomi Beckwith (2018). Most recently, she opened the groundbreaking exhibition, The Dirty South: Contemporary Art, Material Culture and the Sonic Impulse (2021) that toured nationally. She is currently organizing the exhibition, Dawoud Bey: Elegy that looks at the artist’s preoccupation with histories of place. The work includes commissioned photographs of Richmond’s Historic Slave Trail.
Cassel Oliver is the recipient of numerous fellowships and awards including a fellowship from the Center of Curatorial Leadership (2009); the High Museum of Art’s David C. Driskell Award (2011); the James A. Porter Book Award from Howard University (2018) as well as the Alain Locke International Arts Award, Detroit Institute of Art; the College Arts Association’s Excellence in Diversity Award; the Audrey Irmas Award for Curatorial Excellence from the Center for Curatorial Studies, Bard College; and Brandywine Workshop and Archives’ Lifetime Achievement Award (all 2022).
Cassel Oliver holds an Executive MBA from Columbia University, New York; an M.A. in Art History from Howard University in Washington, D.C. and, a B.S. in Communications from the University of Texas at Austin.
AICA supports art writers around the world through public programs and membership that includes free access to museums across the globe. Since its formation in 1950, AICA has been committed to elevating the values of art criticism as a discipline, and acting on behalf of the physical and moral defense of works of art.
AICA supports arts writers around the world through public programs and membership that offers free access to museums across the globe. AICA-USA represents the largest national section of AICA International with over 450 distinguished critics, curators, scholars, and art historians working throughout the United States. As part of the international organization, we benefit from a global reach in presence. AICA-USA is intent on international communication, elevating the values of art criticism as a discipline, and acting on behalf of the physical and moral defense of works of art.
AICA's membership card is recognized for entrance to museums around the world. Members are invited to attend the annual AICA International Congress, hosted each year by a different member nation, and the AICA-USA annual meeting.
Every fall, in cooperation with the New School's Vera List Center for Art and Politics, AICA-USA presents a Distinguished Critic Lecture.
Organized in collaboration with CUE Art Foundation, this program matches emerging critics with experienced AICA-USA members who guide them through the process of writing a catalogue essay.
A partnership between The Andy Warhol Foundation Arts Writers Grant and AICA-USA that gives art writers the opportunity to strengthen their work through one-on-one consultations with leading art critics.