Eckmann Wins Alfred H. Barr Jr. Award

Posted by Liam Otten February 3, 2016

Between the end of World War I and the Nazi rise to power, Germany’s Weimar Republic experienced unprecedented social, economic and political upheaval. It also served as a thriving laboratory of arts and culture.

“New Objectivity: Modern German Art in the Weimar Republic 1919–1933” (2015), is a lavishly illustrated compendium of essays on this topic. Coedited by Sabine Eckmann, PhD, the William T. Kemper Director and Chief Curator at the Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum, and Stephanie Barron, senior curator of modern art at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA), the book has just been awarded the 2016 Alfred H. Barr Award by the College Art Association (CAA).

The Alfred H. Barr Award is one of the CAA’s Awards for Distinction, which honor the outstanding achievements of art historians and curators “whose efforts transcend their individual disciplines and contribute to the profession as a whole and to the world at large.” Eckmann and Barron will receive recognition for this honor at an awards presentation on Feb. 3, during the CAA’s 104th Annual Conference in Washington, D.C.

Featuring more than 300 full-color illustrations, “New Objectivity” examines the distinctive nature of German Neue Sachlichkeit, an icy realism that arose in counterpoint to German Expressionism. Essays by Eckmann and Barron — as well as by Graham Bader, Daniela Frabricius, Pepper Stetler, Megan Luke, and Lynette Roth, among others — situate the movement within a complex and rapidly shifting national context while also teasing out its relation to international art movements of the time, its depiction of gender roles and sexuality, and the influence of new technology and consumer goods. The catalog is copublished by LACMA and DelMonico Books/Prestel.

Established in 1980, the Alfred H. Barr Award is named for the founding director of the Museum of Modern Art in New York. It is presented annually to the author or authors of an especially distinguished catalogue in the history of art, published in the English language under the auspices of a museum, library or collection. For more information, visit