Arshile Gorky, Abstraction and Armenian Identity

GorkyPainting2Dr. Kim Theriault, Professor of Art History, Criticism and Theory at Dominican University, River Forest, Illinois, will present a lecture on the art of Arshile Gorky and its connections to his Armenian identity on Thursday, March 10, 2016 at the Zohrab Center in New York.

Dr. Theriault will discuss the intersection of Arshile Gorky’s Armenian identity with his art, and his subsequent importance to the Armenian community as a model for genocide survival and Armenian success in a modern world.

Professor Theriault’s book Rethinking Arshile Gorky (Pennsylvania State University Press, 2009), was awarded a Society for the Preservation of American Modernists publication grant for its insights into the themes of displacement, trauma, and memory, as well as identifying issues of identity, originality, and mourning in Gorky’s work.

2016-03 ArshileGorkyThe illustrated lecture will take place in the Guild Hall of the Armenian Diocese, 630 2nd Avenue, New York at 7PM. Following the lecture, refreshments will be served and Dr. Theriault’s book will be available for purchase. All are welcome and admission is free.

CLICK HERE to download a color flyer. For further information contact the Zohrab Center at or (212) 686-0710.

Kim Servart Theriault holds a Ph.D. in Art History from the University of Virginia and is Professor of Art History, Theory, and Criticism at Dominican University in River Forest, IL, where she focuses upon Modernist and Contemporary Art History, Criticism, and Culture. She also teaches graduate courses at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, most recently, The Art of Conscience: Cultural Trauma, Collective Memory, and the Artist in the Face of Social and Ethical Dilemmas.

TheriaultIn addition to her book, Professor Theriault contributed the essay “Exile, Trauma, and Arshile Gorky’s The Artist and His Mother” to the Yale University Press catalog for Arshile Gorky: A Retrospective, an exhibition organized by the Philadelphia Museum of Art, which traveled to the Tate Modern and Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art.

She has delivered lectures at the Library of Congress, National Gallery of Art in Washington, DC, Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art, the Gulbenkian Foundation in Lisbon, Portugal, and universities such as Oxford, the University of London, the University of California in both Los Angeles and Berkeley, the University of Michigan, and multiple College Art Association Annual conferences. She also writes reviews of contemporary art. 

GorkyPaintingCurrently Dr. Theriault is focused on public art and memorials, which derives from research and publications on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, DC, such as “Go Away Little Girl: Gender, Race, and Controversy in the Vietnam Veterans Memorial” and “Re-membering Vietnam: War, Trauma and “Scarring Over” After “The Wall.” She is completing her second book, Outside the Wall: The Vietnam Veterans Memorial in American Culture, Conscience, and Consciousness, which addresses the subjects of myth, memory, and trauma. She has delivered presentations on the memorial at American Culture/Popular Culture Association conferences, the Critical Moments Conference at the Emory       University Graduate Institute of the Liberal Arts, the Constructions of Death, Mourning, and Memory Conference, in Woodcliff, New Jersey, and chaired the 2016 College Art Association Annual Conference session in Washington, DC, entitled, “Reconsidering the Wall: The Vietnam Veterans Memorial Thirty-Five Years Later.” She is also co-developing a volume on contemporary public sculpture in Chicago.

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