Dr. Marnin Young

The Drs. Kenneth Chelst, Bertram Schreiber and Fred Zwas Book Grant is designed to foster scholarship among the faculty of Yeshiva College by facilitating the publication of scholarly books and enabling faculty to pursue research, engage in collaborative consultations and seek support for editing and publishing their manuscripts.

One of this year’s recipients was Dr. Marnin Young, associate professor and chair of art history at Stern College for Women. “It was a real honor to be selected for this grant, and it will enable me to complete the final stages of research on my book before it is submitted to a publisher for peer review.”

The working title of Dr. Young’s book is The Phantom Public: Beholding Post-Impressionism in Fin-de-Siècle France, and in it, “I seek to redefine the circumstances of the emergence of Post-Impressionism.”

In his estimation, the art of Georges Seurat, Paul Gauguin, Vincent van Gogh and Paul Cezanne has typically been seen to revolve around a modernist concern with the nature of the medium of painting. “But I argue, to the contrary, that the distinctive problem all artists in this generation faced was a broad crisis in artistic exhibition,” and the book is thus a history of exhibitions of art in the 1880s and 1890s, focused on how artistic innovation responded to the new circumstances of display.

Some preliminary elements of this project are already being made public. An essay on the art criticism of Felix Feneon recently appeared in a catalogue for an exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art, and Dr. Young also contributed to the audio guide of the exhibit. Next year, an essay on Van Gogh will appear in a catalogue for a traveling exhibition published by Yale University Press.

“When travel restrictions are lifted,” he observed, “I will use the grant to finish research in French museums and archives before finalizing my book.”

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