Claudia Mesch

Professor
Faculty
TEMPE Campus
Mailcode
1505
Professor
Faculty
TEMPE Campus
Mailcode
1505
Professor
Faculty
TEMPE Campus
Mailcode
1505
Professor
Faculty
TEMPE Campus
Mailcode
1505

Biography

Claudia Mesch writes on developments in 20th-century and contemporary art. Her publications examine modern art's cultural exchanges across national, disciplinary, and other borders, as well as modern art's engagement with politics. She is the author of many books including "Joseph Beuys: The Reader," "Modern Art at the Berlin Wall: Demarcating Culture in the Cold War Germanys"  [See Judith Smith, "East German art not to be dismissed, professor asserts,"ASU News, May 20, 2009], "Art and Politics: a Small History of Art for Social Change since 1945," and the artist biography "Joseph Beuys." A Chinese translation of Joseph Beuys: The Reader is underway, to be published in 2019; a paperback reprint edition of Modern Art at the Berlin Wall was released in 2018.

She has contributed to the essay collections "From Diversion to Subversion: Games, Play and Twentieth-Century Art," "Sculpture and the Vitrine," and the anthology Toxic Transformations, ed. Silvia Bottinelli and Sharon Hecker (forthcoming). Her essays and reviews have also appeared in the journals Art History, The Space Between, Journal f�r Kunstgeschichte, and Theory, Culture and Society.

Mesch's 2002 contribution to caa.reviews, "Rethinking Conceptual Art," was highlighted in the publication's Centennial Review as the "readers' pick" of 2002, and as one of the most influential reviews in the journal's history. She is a founding editor of the open access e-journal Journal of Surrealism and the Americas, currently in its 10th year of publication. Students intern with the JSA and collaborate with the editors to gain experience in working on all aspects of an e-journal (see "Graphic design meets Surrealism in student faculty collaboration," ASU News, Nov. 13, 2013).

A recipient of multiple research awards from the Fulbright and the D.A.A.D., conference awards from the Terra Foundation for American Art, and fellowships from the Getty Library and the Henry Moore Institute, Mesch was chosen to participate in ASU's 2008 "Last Lecture" series, a prestigious student-nominated award. She has lectured at many museums including the the Crystal Bridges Museum, the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Heard Museum, the Art Institute in Chicago, the Phoenix Art Museum, and the Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art. She is at work on several projects: an essay on Charles Wilbert White's artistic activities in the Soviet Block and East Berlin in the early '60s; another examines Herbert Marcuse's postwar engagement with Surrealism; and, a book-length study of the Surrealists' preoccupation with Native American culture.

Education

  • Ph.D. University of Chicago
  • M.A. University of California-Los Angeles
  • B.A. Yale University

Research Interests

  • Twentieth-Century and Contemporary Art History and Art Theory; Museum Studies
  • Cold War Studies
  • Trauma Studies
  • Surrealism in the Americas
  • German and French Intellectual History

Publications

 

  • Modern Art at the Berlin Wall: Demarcating Culture in the Cold War Germanys (I.B. Tauris, paperback edition/reprint, 2018)
  • Joseph Beuys (Reaktion Books, London, 2017)
  • Beyond the Horizon: Armand Morin & Ernesto Sartori, ed. Claudia de Forêt (Yuma AZ: Yuma Art Center, June, 2016)
  • “L’Institutionalisation de la sculpture sociale: le Bureau pou la démocratie directe par referendum de Beuys,” in Mathieu Copeland, ed., l’exposition d’un film, trans. Chloé Pelletrin (Dijon: Les Presses du reel, 2015), 176-179
  • “Shadows of the Colonial: David Hare, Empathetic Perception, and Ethnographic Surrealism in the 1940s,” South Central Review Vol. 32 No. 1 (Spring 2015): 76-95
  • Art and Politics: a Small History of Art for Social Change Since 1945 (I.B. Tauris, 2013)
  • Sculpture in Fog: Beuys’ Vitrines,” in John Welchman, ed., Sculpture and Vitrine (Ashgate and The Henry Moore Institute, 2013), 121-142
  • “‘What Makes Indians Laugh’: Surrealism, Ritual and Return in Steven Yazzie and Joseph Beuys,” Journal of Surrealism and the Americas (2012) Vol. 6 No. 1 (December, 2012): 39-60.
  • “Serious Play: Games and Early Twentieth-Century Modernism,” reprinted in David Getsy, Ed., From Diversion to Subversion: Games, Play, and Twentieth-Century Art (Pennsylvania State Press, 2011), 60-72

  • Review of Boris Groys, The Communist Postscript (Verso, 2010), Theory, Culture and Society Vol. 28, No. 3 (June, 2011): 162-164

  • “Post-Meinhof Feminism: Yvonne Rainer’s Journeys from Berlin/1971 (1979),” in Berlin Divided City, Sabine Hake and Philip Broadbent, Eds. (New York: Berghahn Books, 2010), 135-144

  • Review of Heike Fuhlbrügge, Joseph Beuys und die anthropologische Landschaft (Reimer Verlag, 2008), Journal für Kunstgeschichte 12: 4 (2008): 307-311

  • Modern Art at the Berlin Wall: Demarcating Culture in the Cold War Germanys (I.B. Tauris, 2008)
  • “Socialist Primitivism and the ‘New’ Leipzig School,” The Art Book 14, No.1 (U.K.; February, 2007): 54-55
  • Joseph Beuys: the Reader, co-edited with Viola Michely (MIT Press/I.B. Tauris, 2007)
  • “‘Ezra Pound is back’: Klaus Ottmann’s SITE Santa Fe Biennial,” exhibition review, The Art Book 14, No.3 (U.K.; August, 2007): 65-66
  • “Cold War Games and Postwar Art,” Reconstruction: Studies in Contemporary Culture, Vol. 6.1 (Winter, 2006), http://reconstruction.eserver.org/061/contents.shtml
  • “Serious Play: Games and Early Twentieth-Century Modernism”,The Space Between: Literature and Culture 1914-1945 (Fall 2005): 9-30
  • Rethinking Conceptual Art,”* caa.reviews (Summer, 2002)
  • " Racing Berlin: The Games of Run Lola Run," M/C: A Journal of Media and Culture (2000).
  • "Vostell's Ruins: Dé-collage and the Mnemotechnic Space of the Postwar City," Art History (2000).

Research Activity

Courses

Fall 2018
Course Number Course Title
ARS 438 Art of the 20th Century I
ARS 499 Individualized Instruction
ARS 501 Methodologies and Art History
ARS 538 Art of the 20th Century I
ARS 590 Reading and Conference
ARS 599 Thesis
ARS 692 Research
ARS 790 Reading and Conference
ARS 792 Research
ARS 799 Dissertation
Summer 2018
Course Number Course Title
ARS 102 Art from Renaissance/Present
Spring 2018
Course Number Course Title
ARS 439 Art of the 20th Century II
ARS 493 Honors Thesis
ARS 498 Pro-Seminar
ARS 499 Individualized Instruction
ARS 539 Art of the 20th Cent. II
ARS 591 Seminar
ARS 599 Thesis
ARS 690 Reading and Conference
ARS 692 Research
ARS 792 Research
ARS 799 Dissertation
Fall 2017
Course Number Course Title
ARS 394 Special Topics
ARS 438 Art of the 20th Century I
ARS 492 Honors Directed Study
ARS 493 Honors Thesis
ARS 499 Individualized Instruction
ARS 501 Methodologies and Art History
ARS 590 Reading and Conference
ARS 592 Research
ARS 599 Thesis
ARS 690 Reading and Conference
ARS 692 Research
ARS 790 Reading and Conference
ARS 792 Research
ARS 799 Dissertation
Summer 2017
Course Number Course Title
ARS 102 Art from Renaissance/Present
Spring 2017
Course Number Course Title
ARS 102 Art from Renaissance/Present
ARS 394 Special Topics
ARA 394 Special Topics
ARA 484 Internship
ARS 493 Honors Thesis
ARS 498 Pro-Seminar
ARS 499 Individualized Instruction
ARA 499 Individualized Instruction
ARS 590 Reading and Conference
ARS 592 Research
ARS 599 Thesis
ARS 690 Reading and Conference
EPD 700 Research Methods
ARS 792 Research
ARS 799 Dissertation
Fall 2016
Course Number Course Title
ARS 394 Special Topics
ARS 438 Art of the 20th Century I
ARS 492 Honors Directed Study
ARS 493 Honors Thesis
ARS 498 Pro-Seminar
ARS 499 Individualized Instruction
ARS 538 Art of the 20th Century I
ARS 590 Reading and Conference
ARS 591 Seminar
ARS 592 Research
ARS 599 Thesis
ARS 690 Reading and Conference
ARS 692 Research
ARS 790 Reading and Conference
EPD 792 Research
ARS 792 Research
ARS 799 Dissertation
Summer 2016
Course Number Course Title
ARS 102 Art from Renaissance/Present
Spring 2016
Course Number Course Title
ARS 394 Special Topics
ARA 394 Special Topics
ARS 438 Art of the 20th Century I
ARS 439 Art of the 20th Century II
ARA 484 Internship
ARS 492 Honors Directed Study
ARS 493 Honors Thesis
ARA 499 Individualized Instruction
ARS 499 Individualized Instruction
ARS 539 Art of the 20th Cent. II
ARS 590 Reading and Conference
ARS 592 Research
ARS 599 Thesis
ARS 690 Reading and Conference
ARS 792 Research
ARS 799 Dissertation
Fall 2015
Course Number Course Title
ARS 394 Special Topics
ARS 492 Honors Directed Study
ARS 493 Honors Thesis
ARS 499 Individualized Instruction
ARS 590 Reading and Conference
ARS 592 Research
ARS 595 Continuing Registration
ARS 599 Thesis
ARS 690 Reading and Conference
ARS 692 Research
ARS 790 Reading and Conference
ARS 792 Research
ARS 795 Continuing Registration
ARS 799 Dissertation
Summer 2015
Course Number Course Title
ARS 102 Art from Renaissance/Present
ARS 599 Thesis
Spring 2015
Course Number Course Title
ARA 394 Special Topics
ARS 394 Special Topics
ARS 438 Art of the 20th Century I
ARA 484 Internship
ARS 492 Honors Directed Study
ARS 493 Honors Thesis
ARS 498 Pro-Seminar
ARS 499 Individualized Instruction
ARA 499 Individualized Instruction
ARS 590 Reading and Conference
ARS 591 Seminar
ARS 592 Research
ARS 599 Thesis
ARS 690 Reading and Conference
EPD 790 Reading and Conference
ARS 790 Reading and Conference
ARS 799 Dissertation
Fall 2014
Course Number Course Title
ARS 394 Special Topics
ARA 394 Special Topics
ARS 438 Art of the 20th Century I
ARA 484 Internship
ARS 492 Honors Directed Study
ARS 493 Honors Thesis
ARS 498 Pro-Seminar
ARS 499 Individualized Instruction
ARA 499 Individualized Instruction
ARA 584 Internship
ARS 590 Reading and Conference
ARA 592 Research
ARS 592 Research
ARS 595 Continuing Registration
ARS 598 Special Topics
ARS 599 Thesis
ARS 690 Reading and Conference
ARS 692 Research
ARS 790 Reading and Conference
ARS 792 Research
ARS 795 Continuing Registration
ARS 799 Dissertation
Summer 2014
Course Number Course Title
ARS 102 Art from Renaissance/Present
ARS 599 Thesis
Spring 2014
Course Number Course Title
ARA 394 Special Topics
ARA 484 Internship
ARS 492 Honors Directed Study
ARS 493 Honors Thesis
ARS 498 Pro-Seminar
ARS 499 Individualized Instruction
ARA 499 Individualized Instruction
ARS 590 Reading and Conference
ARS 591 Seminar
ARS 592 Research
ARS 595 Continuing Registration
ARS 599 Thesis
ARS 795 Continuing Registration
ARS 799 Dissertation

Presentations

  • Mesch, Claudia. "What Makes Indians Laugh: Surrealism, Ritual and Return in Steven Yazzie and Joseph Beuys". "Surrealism and the Americas" Conference, Rice University, Houston, Texas (Nov 2010).
  • Mesch, Ulrike. The Failure and Success of the D�sseldorf (Art) Student Movement. 2008 University of North Carolina German Studies Workshop (Apr 2008).
  • Mesch, Ulrike. Berlin and Post-Meinhof Feminism: Yvonne Rainers 'Journeys from Berlin/1971' (1979). UT Austin German Studies Symposium (Mar 2008).
  • Mesch, Ulrike. The Art and Legacies of the B�ro Berlin. (Aug 2006).
  • Mesch, Ulrike. Picasso in Berlin, and the cold war battle for the 'real' in painting. (Nov 2004).
  • Mesch, Ulrike. Recovering and Reconstructing 'Modern Art' in Divided Berlin. (Nov 2004).
  • Mesch, Ulrike. Recovering and Reconstructing 'Modern Art' in Divided Berlin. CAA Conference (Feb 2004).
  • Mesch, Ulrike. Marcuse, Art History, and the Abandonment of '60s Radical Culture. Critical Theory Roundtable (Oct 2000).
  • Mesch, Ulrike. Forgetting Marcuse. College Art Association conference (Feb 2000).
  • Mesch, Ulrike. Marking the Postwar City: Art, Space and Memory in Divided Berlin. German Studies Association Conference
  • Mesch, Ulrike. The Other Divide: Art on Television in Cold War Germany. Broadcast Education Association Conference

Service

  • School of Art Area Heads, Area Representative, Art History (2010 - 2011)