Donald Kuspit is one of America’s most distinguished art critics. In 1983 he received the prestigious Frank Jewett Mather Award for Distinction in Art Criticism, given by the College Art Association. In 1993 he received an honorary doctorate in fine arts from Davidson College, in 1996 from the San Francisco Art Institute, and in 2007 from the New York Academy of Art. In 1997 the National Association of the Schools of Art and Design presented him with a Citation for Distinguished Service to the Visual Arts. In 1998 he received an honorary doctorate of humane letters from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. In 2000 he delivered the Getty Lectures at the University of Southern California. In 2005 he was the Robertson Fellow at the University of Glasgow. In 2008 he received the Tenth Annual Award for Excellence in the Arts from the Newington-Cropsey Foundation. In 2013 he received the First Annual Award for Excellence in Cultural Criticism from the Gabarron Foundation. He has received fellowships from the Ford Foundation, Fulbright Commission, National Endowment for the Arts, National Endowment for the Humanities, Guggenheim Foundation, and Asian Cultural Council, among other organizations.
Donald Kuspit is Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Art History and Philosophy at the State University of New York at Stony Brook, and has been the A. D. White Professor at Large at Cornell University (1991-97). He is also Senior Critic at the New York Academy of Art. He has doctorates in philosophy (University of Frankfurt) and art history (University of Michigan), as well as degrees from Columbia University, Yale University, and Pennsylvania State University. He has also completed the course of study at the Psychoanalytic Institute of the New York University Medical Center.
He has written numerous articles, exhibition reviews, catalogue essays, lectured at many universities and art schools, curated many exhibitions, and edited several series for UMI Research Press and the Cambridge University Press. He was the editorial advisor for European Art 1900-50 and art criticism for the Encyclopedia Britannica (16thedition), and wrote the entry on art criticism for it. Among his books are The Critic Is Artist: The Intentionality of Art(Ann Arbor: UMI Research Press, 1984); The Cult of the Avant-Garde Artist(New York: Cambridge University Press, 1993; in German, Klagenfurt: Ritter Verlag, 1995); The Dialectic of Decadence(New York: Stux Press, 1993; reissued, New York: Allworth Press, 2000); The New Subjectivism: Art in the 1980s (Ann Arbor: UMI Research Press, 1988; reissued, New York: Da Capo Press, 1993); Signs of Psyche in Modern and Post-Modern Art(New York: Cambridge University Press, 1994; in Spanish, Madrid: Akal, 2002); Idiosyncratic Identities: Artists at the End of the Avant-Garde(New York: Cambridge University Press, 1996); The Rebirth of Painting in the Late Twentieth Century(New York: Cambridge University Press, 2000); Psychostrategies of Avant-Garde Art(New York: Cambridge University Press, 2000); Redeeming Art: Critical Reveries(New York: Allworth Press, 2000); The End of Art(New York: Cambridge University Press, 2004; in Chinese, University of Pejing Press; in Korean, University of Seoul Press; in Polish, Gdansk Museum of Art; in Spanish, Akal; in Turkish, Istanbul: Metis; in Italian; in Croatian); A Critical History of Twentieth Century Art(New York: Artnet, 2006, ebook; in Serbian, Belgrade: Art Press, 2011); Psychodrama: Modern Art as Group Therapy(London: Ziggurat Press, 2010). He has written monographs on individual artists, serves as a contributing editor for several art magazines, and published six books of poems: Self-Refraction(1983; visual accompaniment by Rudolf Baranik); Apocalypse with Jewels in the Distance(2000; visual accompaniment by Rosalind Schwartz); On the Gathering Emptiness(2004; visual accompaniment by Walter Feldman and Hans Breder); The Gods and Other Beings(2010); Wondrous Beloved, Last Longings(2017); Disillusion(2019).