History of Art and Architecture

Barbara McCloskey


Area of Specialization

20th Century German Art


Past PhD(s): Emi Finkelstein, Meredith North, Heidi Cook, Maria D'Anniballe, April Eisman, Kristen Harkness, Karla Huebner, Annah Kellogg-Krieg, Cindy Persinger, Sylvia Rhor, Leesa Rittelman; See a listing of Past PhDs for details

Barbara McCloskey has published widely on the relationship between art and politics in 20th century German art, the visual culture of World War II, and artistic mediations of the experience of exile in the modern and contemporary eras. Graduate students working under her supervision have developed MA and PhD theses on topics ranging from art and photography in Weimar and the Third Reich to studies of 1930s American muralism and leftist art history, East German art and design, Czech surrealism, and issues of nationalism and populism in Russian fin-de-siéclè and early 20th century Croatian art, post-World War II Minimalism in Germany, and post-Wall exhibitions of East German art.  Many of her students have competed successfully for prestigious national and international awards including DAAD, Wolfsonian, Fulbright, Berlin Prize, and Fulbright-Hayes fellowships.

Education Details

PhD, Northwestern

Selected Publications

 “White Supremacy and the Art of Anti-Fascism in the United States and Germany between the World Wars, Kunst und Politik (vol. 23, 2021): 101-109. 

 “Teach Your Children Well: Hermynia Zur Mühlen, George Grosz, and the Art of Radical Pedagogy in Germany between the World Wars,” 77-95.  In Deborah Ascher Barnstone and Elizabeth Otto, eds., Art and Resistance in Germany (London: Bloomsbury, 2018).

The Art of War, anthology co-edited with Deborah Ascher Barnstone.  Volume 5 in the German Visual Culture series (Oxford: Peter Lang, 2017).

The Exile of George Grosz: Modernism, America, and the One World Order (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2015).

“Marking Time: Women and Nazi Propaganda Art during World War II.”  Contemporaneity  2 (2012): 1-17.

"Hauntings," 10-20. In George Grosz: The Years in America, 1933-1958 (Ostfildern, Germany: Hatje Cantz Verlag, 2009).

“Dialectic at a Standstill: East German Socialist Realism of the Stalin Era,” 104-117. In Art of the Two Germanys: Cold War Cultures (Los Angeles: Los Angeles County Museum of Art, 2009).

"The Face of Socialism: George Grosz and José Carlos Mariátegui's Amauta," Third Text, vol. 22, issue 4 (July 2008): 455-465.

With co-author Fred Evans. "Sixties Redux?: Kutlug Ataman's Provocation at the 2004/05 Carnegie International" in Kunst und Politik 9 (2007): 175-181.

“Exile for Hire: George Grosz in Dallas.” In Sabine Eckmann and Lutz Koepnick, eds., Caught by Politics: German Exiles and American Visual Culture in the 1930s and 1940s (Palgrave Press 2007).

With co-author Fred Evans. “The New Solidarity: a Case Study of Cross-Border Labor Networks and Mural Art in the Age of Globalization,” 483-496. In Anatole Anton and Richard Schmitt, eds., Toward a New Socialism (Lanham, Maryland: Rowman and Littlefield Publishers, 2007).

“From the Frontier to the Wild West: German Artists, American Indians, and the Spectacle of Race and Nation in the Nineteenth and Early Twentieth Centuries,” 299-321. In I Like America, ex. cat. Published in English and German editions. (Frankfurt am Main: Schirn Kunsthalle, 2006).

Artists of World War II (New York: Greenwood Press, 2005).

“Cartographies of Exile,” 135-152. In Alexander Stephan, ed., Exile and Otherness: New Approaches to the Experience of the Nazi Refugees (Oxford: Peter Lang, 2005).

“Hitler and Me: George Grosz and the Experience of German Exile,” 243-258. In Helmut Koopmann and Klaus Dieter Post, eds., Exil: Transhistorische und transnationale Perspektiven (Paderborn: Mentis, 2001).

“George Grosz,” 326-33; and “Lyonel Feininger,” 360-67. In Renée Price, ed., New Worlds: German and Austrian Art, 1890-1940 (New York: Neue Galerie, 2001).

George Grosz and the Communist Party: Art and Radicalism in Crisis, 1918 to 1936 (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1997).

Selected Awards

Principal investigator, with co-investigators Kirk Savage and Terry Smith, for an Andrew W. Mellon grant to establish Collecting Knowledge Pittsburgh, a consortium of the Department of History of Art and Architecture and local arts institutions (2015).

Research grants from DAAD (Deutscher akademischer Austauschdienst), the Center for West European Studies, and the University Center for International Studies.

David and Tina Bellet Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching in the College of Arts and Sciences (2000).