Christian Crouch Named Dean of Graduate Studies at Bard College
Bard College announces the appointment of Professor Christian Crouch as the incoming Dean of Graduate Studies, beginning July 1, 2021. Professor Crouch has been Associate Professor of History and Director of American Studies at Bard since 2014. Her work focuses on the histories of the early modern Atlantic, comparative slavery, American material culture, and Native American and Indigenous Studies. Professor Crouch succeeds Professor Norton Batkin, who stepped down on September 1 after 15 years as Dean of Graduate Studies. During his tenure, Norton Batkin oversaw the growth and success of Bard’s graduate programs.
Bard MBA in Sustainability Professor Kathy Hipple on Factors Affecting Oil and Gas Company Decisions to Drill in the ArcticHipple tells Sierra magazine that oil executives at major companies make decisions about exploration and development based on long-term forecasts—sometimes decades out. “We see that the oil companies are starting to diverge on where they view peak oil demand,” says Hipple. “Some of the companies such as Exxon are saying, as recently as its second-quarter earnings call, nothing has fundamentally changed. Whereas BP has said, ‘Things have fundamentally changed; we are radically rethinking our business.’” Read More >>
Bard Graduate Programs in the News
Bard College announces the appointment of Professor Christian Crouch as the incoming Dean of Graduate Studies, beginning July 1, 2021.
Professor Crouch has been Associate Professor of History and Director of American Studies at Bard since 2014. Her work focuses on the histories of the early modern Atlantic, comparative slavery, American material culture, and Native American and Indigenous Studies. She holds a Ph.D. and an M.A. with Distinction in Atlantic History from New York University, and an A.B. cum laude in History from Princeton University.
She has taught in the Clemente Course in the Humanities since 2010 and served as Curatorial Advisor for the 2020–2021 Brooklyn Museum exhibition “Jeffrey Gibson: When Fire is Applied to a Stone it Cracks.” Her book, Nobility Lost: French and Canadian Martial Cultures, Indians, and the End of New France 1600–1848 (Cornell University Press, 2014) won the Mary Alice and Philip Boucher Prize for best book in French colonial history from the French Colonial Historical Society in 2015. Her recent scholarly work includes articles in William and Mary Quarterly (2018), Early American Studies (2016) and chapters in the edited volumes France, Ireland, and the Atlantic in a Time of War: Reflections on the Bordeaux–Dublin Letters, 1757 (Routledge 2017) and The French Revolution as Moment of Respatialization (De Gruyter 2019).
Professor Crouch currently serves on the council of the Omohundro Institute and is a member of the inaugural cohort of Bright Institute Fellows. In 2019, she received a Georgian Papers Program Fellowship and previously was a 2016–2017 Hutchins fellow at Harvard University’s Hutchins Center for African and African American Research. Her research has been supported by fellowships and grants from the American Philosophical Society, the Yale Center for British Art, the John Carter Brown Library, the William L. Clements Library, the Massachusetts Historical Society, and the Newberry Library. Her current manuscript in progress, Queen Victoria's Captives: A Story of Ambition, Empire, and a Stolen Ethiopian Prince, studies the human consequences of the 1868 Maqdala Campaign.
“I am delighted that Professor Crouch has agreed to accept this vital leadership position, said Bard College President Leon Botstein. “Graduate education has been a crucial part of the college's mission for nearly half a century. Its significance is defined by the specific constituencies each separate program serves, the capacity of graduate education to enrich the experiences and opportunities available to undergraduate students at Bard, and the contribution the graduate programs make to the long-term sustainability of Bard.”
Professor Crouch succeeds Professor Norton Batkin, who stepped down on September 1 after 15 years as Dean of Graduate Studies. During his tenure, Norton Batkin oversaw the growth and success of Bard’s graduate programs. He came to Bard in 1991 as visiting associate professor of philosophy and art history and director of the Center for Curatorial Studies (CCS). “Bard owes an enormous debt of gratitude to Norton for his exemplary stewardship, energy and dedication,” Botstein said. “He demonstrated resilience and creativity as CCS Director, and Graduate Dean. Norton will continue teaching philosophy in the undergraduate college.”
The College also announces that Michael Sadowski, executive director of Bard Early College Hudson Valley programs and director of inclusive pedagogy and curriculum in the office of the Dean of the College, has agreed to assume the position of Interim Dean of Graduate Studies for this academic year 2020–2021. Sadowski was the founding executive director of Bard Early College Hudson, Bard’s first early college program in the Hudson Valley. He also teaches courses in youth identity development for the Master of Arts in Teaching program, and on LGBTQ+ issues in American education in the Human Rights Program. He has been an instructor at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, where he earned his doctorate, and was a visiting professor in 2016–17 at Stanford University. He will serve as Dean of Graduate Studies until July 1, when Professor Crouch assumes the position.
The Orchestra Now (TŌN) has just released a new CD on Bridge Records titled Buried Alive, recorded at the Fisher Center for the Performing Arts at Bard College in November 2019. The Orchestra is led by conductor Leon Botstein and features German baritone Michael Nagy in Othmar Schoeck’s song cycle Buried Alive—adapted from Gottfried Keller’s poem Lebendig begraben—about a man who wakes up to find he has been buried by mistake. This release marks only the second recording ever of Lebendig begraben, since a 1962 recording with Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau almost 60 years ago. The album also includes Honegger’s wildly rhythmic Rugby, written to evoke the spirit of the game, and the only known recording of Mitropoulos’ 1929 Concerto Grosso, considered by the composer to be his best work.
All three works on this CD were written in the 1920s, a time of unprecedented experimentation and innovation in all the arts, including music. Composers from Schoenberg to Stravinsky and Bartók to Prokofiev became pioneers of musical modernism and Buried Alive brings together three composers of vastly different backgrounds during that turbulent decade.
Buried Alive, on Bridge Records
Leon Botstein, conductor
Michael Nagy, baritone
The Bard Festival Chorale
Schoeck: Buried Alive
Mitropoulos: Concerto Grosso
Digital files of the recording are available on request for press use.
To view the full list of TON’s CDs, click here.
The Orchestra Now
The Orchestra Now (TŌN) is a group of 72 vibrant young musicians from 14 different countries across the globe: Bulgaria, China, Costa Rica, Hungary, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Mongolia, Peru, Spain, Taiwan, Thailand, the U.K., and the U.S. All share a mission to make orchestral music relevant to 21st-century audiences by sharing their unique personal insights in a welcoming environment. Hand-picked from the world’s leading conservatories—including The Juilliard School, Shanghai Conservatory of Music, Royal Conservatory of Brussels, and the Curtis Institute of Music—the members of TŌN are enlightening curious minds by giving on-stage introductions and demonstrations, writing concert notes from the musicians’ perspective, and having one-on-one discussions with patrons during intermissions.
Conductor, educator, and music historian Leon Botstein, whom The New York Times said “draws rich, expressive playing from the orchestra,” founded TŌN in 2015 as a graduate program at Bard College, where he is also president. TŌN offers both a three-year master’s degree in Curatorial, Critical, and Performance Studies and a two-year advanced certificate in Orchestra Studies. The orchestra’s home base is the Frank Gehry-designed Fisher Center at Bard, where they perform multiple concerts each season and take part in the annual Bard Music Festival. They also perform regularly at the finest venues in New York, including Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, and others across NYC and beyond. HuffPost, who has called TŌN’s performances “dramatic and intense,” praises these concerts as “an opportunity to see talented musicians early in their careers.”
The Orchestra has performed with many distinguished guest conductors and soloists, including Hans Graf, Neeme Järvi, Vadim Repin, Fabio Luisi, Peter Serkin, Gerard Schwarz, Tan Dun, Zuill Bailey, and JoAnn Falletta. Recordings featuring The Orchestra Now include two albums of piano concertos with Piers Lane on Hyperion Records, and a Sorel Classics concert recording of pianist Anna Shelest performing works by Anton Rubinstein with TŌN and conductor Neeme Järvi. Buried Alive with baritone Michael Nagy, released on Bridge Records in August 2020, includes the first recording in almost 60 years—and only the second recording ever—of Othmar Schoeck’s song-cycle Lebendig begraben. Upcoming releases include an album of piano concertos with Orion Weiss on Bridge Records. Recordings of TŌN’s live concerts from the Fisher Center can be heard on Classical WMHT-FM and WWFM The Classical Network, and are featured regularly on Performance Today, broadcast nationwide. In 2019, the orchestra’s performance with Vadim Repin was live-streamed on The Violin Channel.
For upcoming activities and more detailed information about the musicians, visit theorchestranow.org.
Leon Botstein brings a renowned career as both a conductor and educator to his role as music director of The Orchestra Now. He has been music director of the American Symphony Orchestra since 1992, artistic co-director of Bard SummerScape and the Bard Music Festival since their creation, and president of Bard College since 1975. He was the music director of the Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra from 2003–11 and is now conductor laureate. In 2018, he assumed artistic directorship of Campus Grafenegg and Grafenegg Academy in Austria. Mr. Botstein is also a frequent guest conductor with orchestras around the globe, has made numerous recordings, and is a prolific author and music historian. He is editor of the prestigious The Musical Quarterly and has received many honors for his contributions to music. More info online at LeonBotstein.com.
Pascal Nadon Communications
Associate Vice President of Communications
Bard College announced today the appointment of Tania El Khoury as Distinguished Artist in Residence of Theater and Performance and Ziad Abu-Rish as Visiting Associate Professor of Human Rights. Together they will lead a pioneering Master of Arts program in Human Rights and the Arts, planned to commence in Fall 2021. Designed by Bard’s Human Rights Program, the Fisher Center at Bard, and the Central European University, and launched through the Open Society University Network (OSUN), the interdisciplinary program will bring together scholars, artists, and activists from around the world to explore the highly-charged relation between artistic practices and struggles for truth and justice.
The appointments deepen Bard’s relationship with El Khoury and Abu-Rish, both of whom were visiting faculty at the college in 2019. Abu-Rish taught in the Human Rights Program, while El Khoury co-curated the 2019 edition of the Live Arts Bard Biennial at the Fisher Center at Bard. Where No Wall Remains: an international festival about borders included nine newly commissioned projects by artists from the Middle East and the Americas. In addition to their work with the new graduate program, they will also teach in the undergraduate college: El Khoury is joining the faculty of the Theatre & Performance Program; Abu-Rish is affiliated with the Human Rights Program.
The proposed M.A. program in Human Rights and The Arts links the study of advocacy, law, and politics to critical theoretical-historical reflection, and focuses on the power of aesthetic, performative, and curatorial forms in the fight for rights. Anchored in the intersection of art, research, activism and social change, it will offer students the opportunity to explore interdisciplinary training, creative knowledge production, and practice-based research. At its heart is a perspective that looks beyond the U.S.-based art and NGO industries to identify, assess, and engage with the ethical, intellectual, and political potential of this emerging hybrid form. Students in the program will pursue a core of interdisciplinary courses in human rights theory and practice, supplemented with electives across the arts and humanities, including, in particular, the study and practice of live arts and performance, and curatorial practices.
“The international and cross-disciplinary dimensions of this new program make it groundbreaking and timely,” said Gideon Lester, Artistic Director of the Fisher Center and Director of Bard’s Theater & Performance Program. “Students will work with artists, faculty, and curators across OSUN's international network and beyond. Artists and human rights experts will inform each other’s practices, offering a fully integrated pedagogy. At a time when the ideals of open society and liberal education are threatened, this program will offer unique and fertile opportunities to study and share best practices across the world.”
El Khoury is internationally recognized for her installations, performances, and video projects. A Soros Arts Fellow for 2019, El Khoury's work explores political histories and contemporary issues through richly-researched and aesthetically-precise events focused on audience interactivity and concerned with the ethical and political potential of such encounters. In as Far As My Fingertips Take Me, a one-on-one performance, a refugee artist painstakingly inscribes a drawing on the arm of a guest while narrating the story of his sisters' escape from Damascus. In Gardens Speak, an interactive sound installation, the audience is asked to dig in the dirt to exhume stories of the Syrian uprising. El Khoury holds a PhD in Performance Studies from Royal Holloway, University of London. She is affiliated with Forest Fringe in the United Kingdom and is the co-founder of the urban research and performance collective Dictaphone Group in Lebanon.
Abu-Rish was previously Assistant Professor of History and Founding Director of the Middle East and North Africa Studies Certificate Program at Ohio University. He holds a Ph.D. in History from the University of California, Los Angeles, and serves as Co-Editor of Arab Studies Journal. He has a highly successfully track-record of institution building, public scholarship initiatives, and graduate student training. He co-edited Jadaliyya, organized summer institutes for graduate students, and contributed to various research centers and academic associations. Abu-Rish has published widely on politics, economics, and popular mobilizations in Lebanon and Jordan, and is a co-editor, with Bassam Haddad and Rosie Bsheer, of The Dawn of the Arab Uprisings: End of An Old Order? (2012). He is currently completing a book entitled The State of Lebanon: Popular Politics and the Institution Building in the Wake of Independence.
“Almost 20 years ago Bard was the first U.S. institution to offer a full, free-standing, interdisciplinary B.A. in Human Rights,” said Thomas Keenan, director of Bard's Human Rights Program. “Tania El Khoury and Ziad Abu-Rish will expand this to the graduate level and explore the forces that emerge at the intersection between human rights and the arts. The program will underscore the importance of the arts and humanities in confronting pressing social issues, and serve as an incubator of new ideas and strategies within the human rights movement at a time when it is widely understood to be under assault.”
The program is supported by the newly-founded Open Society University Network, a global project of Bard College, the Central European University, and the Open Society Foundations, with university and research partners stretching from Germany and Kyrgyzstan to Ghana and Colombia.
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Bard College announces the appointment of Hannah Barrett as director of the Milton Avery Graduate School of the Arts. Prior to this appointment, Barrett, an award-winning artist and educator who has taught, lectured, and exhibited widely, was the international program coordinator at Bard College Berlin. Barrett succeeds Arthur Gibbons, who served as director of the Bard MFA program since 1990. Gibbons will continue teaching at Bard as professor of sculpture in the College’s Division of the Arts.
“I am delighted that Hannah Barrett has accepted the appointment as the new Director of the MFA program, one of Bard’s most distinguished graduate programs and one of the finest MFA programs in the country,” said Bard College President Leon Botstein. “She has been a terrific colleague and is uniquely suited to take this vital task on. She follows the remarkable, long, and distinguished tenure of Arthur Gibbons, who led the MFA to achieve its international renown. I thank Hannah and the faculty in the MFA program for their cooperation in finding a path to continue the excellent and innovative work of the MFA in this challenging time.”
Hannah Barrett is a Brooklyn and Hudson Valley based artist. The portrayal of gender ambiguity has driven her painting for over a decade, which has led to the current exploration of dandy monsters in domestic space. Recent exhibitions include a 2020 retrospective at Childs Gallery, Boston, a two-person invitational in 2019 at La MaMa Galleria, and a solo at Yours Mine and Ours Gallery in 2018. Selected group shows include Spring Break 2020, Platform Project Space, Dumbo NY, Kate Werble and Calicoon galleries in NYC, Mother Gallery, Beacon NY, and September Gallery in Hudson NY. Museum Shows include the Decordova Museum, Museum of Fine Arts Boston, and National Museum of Women in the Arts. Her work has been written about in Art Forum, Time Out New York, and Modern Painters. Barrett is on the curatorial staff of Soloway Gallery in Williamsburg. Barrett is also the illustrator of a vegan and lesbian themed children’s book “Nuts in Nutland”. Prior to coming to Bard, Barrett taught painting and drawing for 18 years and was on the faculty at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts Boston and the Pratt Institute Brooklyn. Barrett holds a BA in studio art and German literature from Wellesley College and an MFA in painting from Boston University.
Founded in 1981, Bard MFA is a nontraditional school for visual, written, and time-based arts. At Bard, the community itself is the primary resource for the student—serving as audience, teacher, and peer group in an ongoing dialogue. In interdisciplinary group critiques, seminars, school presentations, as well as discipline caucuses and one-on-one conferences, the artist students engage with accomplished faculty members, while developing their individual studio practices. The program probes a diversity of approaches and fosters imaginative responses and insights to aesthetic concerns across the disciplines of film/video, writing, painting, sculpture, photography, and music/sound.
With the US economy going into a deep slump, the federal government has attempted to counteract the pain by increasing spending. But for cities and states, it’s virtually impossible for them to run countercyclical fiscal policy. Furthermore, the crisis is draining local coffers due to public health expenditure and the collapse of tax revenue. Alexander Williams ’20, an MS candidate in economic theory and policy at Bard’s Levy Economics Institute, weighs in on the current state of state and municipal finances in this episode of the Odd Lots podcast with Joe Weisenthal and Tracy Alloway.