Max Kozloff



2 - 5pm

SVA Theatre

Max Kozloff is one of the most important figures in the fields of art and photography criticism. Within three years of his Masters degree in Art History from the University of Chicago, he became the art critic for The Nation (1961-68), the New York correspondent for the magazine Art International (1961-64), and later moved from Associate to Contributing to Executive Editor at Artforum (1963-1976), a magazine founded in 1962 with the express intent to move US art criticism into an intellectually rigorous form.

He began publishing books in 1969 with a monograph on Jasper Johns (Abrams) and went on to complete 15 books (and counting) in addition to numerous essays for book monographs. His 1969 anthology of critical writings (Renderings; Critical Essays on a Century of Modern Art) was one of the first to call attention to the inadequacy of current forms of criticism to deal with the new art forms of Pop and Minimalism. A recent book on the early New York School of photography has been a focus of Kozloff’s scholarship and criticism.

As a critic he has received fellowships from Pulitzer, Fullbright, Guggenheim and National Endowment for the Arts for critical writing in the arts. The College Art Association (CAA) awarded him its highest award for art criticism while the International Center for Photography (ICP) awarded him its prize for excellence in writing on photography.

In 1976 he began taking his own photographs after switching his field from art criticism to writing on photography. His own work was first presented at the Holly Solomon Gallery, NY, in 1977 culminating in several one-person and group exhibitions in over half a dozen countries. His work is currently represented by the Steven Kasher Gallery in New York.

As an educator he taught at the University of Chicago, Cooper Union, Queens College, Yale University, Chicago Art Institute, UCLA and from 1989-2000 in the MFA Photography, Video and Related Media at the School of Visual Arts (SVA), New York, the sponsor of this celebration of his career on November 8: Max Kozloff and the Unfolding of Photography Criticism.

Kozloff’s 40-plus years of observation, consideration, and pursuit of wily meanings will be celebrated by well-known authorities speaking to some of his major concerns. Sandra Phillips, Senior Curator of Photography at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, will address his concentration on street photography; the author and scholar Phillip Lopate will discuss Kozloff’s observations on portraiture; the celebrated photographer Duane Michals will speak on Kozloff the photographer; Robert Storr, well-known curator, critic and current Dean of the Yale School of Art, will position Kozloff’s contributions to the field of art and photography criticism. Lyle Rexer, writer and critic, will serve as moderator for the symposium.

An opening reception honoring his portrait photography titled "The Music of Faces" will follow from 5:30 until 7:30, hosted by the Steven Kasher Gallery, 515 West 26th, Second Floor. The work will be on view until November 24th. 

Conceived by Richard Leslie and produced by Michelle Leftheris, the event is sponsored by the School of Visual Arts (SVA) in partial celebration of the 25th-plus anniversary of the MFA program in Photography, Video and Related Media. Support for this event generously provided by Jeff Nesin of the Provost’s Office.

Read more about the event and RSVP here.