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College of Fine Arts Welcomes Dave Hickey Back to Campus

The internationally acclaimed art critic will deliver two lectures on art and writing.
Arts and Culture  |  Sep 19, 2017  |  By Jennifer Vaughan
Media Contact: Jennifer Vaughan, 702-895-1575


Internationally acclaimed art critic and former UNLV faculty member Dave Hickey returns to UNLV for two very special lectures in the UNLV Marjorie Barrick Museum auditorium. The first lecture, "On Art," is 7-9 p.m. on Monday, Sept. 25. The second lecture, "On Writing," is 7-9 p.m. on Monday, Oct. 2.

Hickey has written for such publications as Rolling Stone, Art News, Art in America, Artforum, Harper's Magazine, Vanity Fair, and many others. In 2001, he was awarded the MacArthur Fellowship - the so-called "genius grant" - while a professor in the UNLV Department of Art. 

He is known for his arguments against academicism and in favor of the effects of rough-and-tumble free markets on art. His critical essays have been published in two volumes: The Invisible Dragon: Four Essays on Beauty (1993) and Air Guitar: Essays on Art and Democracy (1997). In 2009, Hickey published a revised and updated version of The Invisible Dragon, adding an introduction that addressed changes in the art world since the book's original publication, as well as a new concluding essay.

"I write love songs for people who live in a democracy," he has said.

Profiles of Hickey have appeared in Time Magazine, The New York TimesThe Los Angeles TimesThe Los Angeles Times MagazineThe Wall Street JournalNewsweekU.S. News & World ReportThe Economist, and Flaunt, among other publications. Interviews with Hickey have been published in The Los Angeles TimesBombNew Art ExaminerPublic EventsThe Art Newspaper and other magazines. He has been interviewed several times on topics like art and Las Vegas by the BBC, PBS, and National Public Radio.

In 2014, Hickey began making posts on Facebook during an illness. Eighteen months later, art historian Julia Friedman suggested a project documenting his experience. Two books resulted from the collaboration: Wasted Words and Dust Bunnies, published in 2016. Both books appeared in a lengthy review published by The Times Literary Supplement. 

In 2015, he wrote the essay "War Is Beautiful, They Say" for the book "War is Beautiful: The New York Times Pictorial Guide to the Glamour of Armed Conflict" by David Shields. This essay described the painterly influences and inspirations behind several war photographs published by The New York Times.

Hickey is married to art historian and fellow former UNLV art faculty Libby Lumpkin.

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