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Oakland, CA - Moira Roth, Trefethen Professor of Art History at Mills College, has been named a 2006 recipient of the Annual Recognition Award by the Committee on Women in the Arts of the College Art Association (CAA). She was chosen for excellence in art and leadership in the world of art.

An internationally recognized writer, curator, and lecturer, Roth has curated numerous groundbreaking exhibitions, and published books, articles, essays, and conversations with artists that bring visibility and give voice to artists underrepresented in their profession. Among Roth’s awards and honors are the Women’s Caucus for Art’s Mid-career Art History Award (1989) and the Lifetime Achievement Award (1997); an honorary PhD from the San Francisco Art Institute (1994); and the Frank Jewett Mather, Jr. Critic’s Award (lifetime achievement), College Arts Association (2000).   

The other winner of the CWA Annual Recognition Award is Trinh T. Minh-ha, Professor of Women's Studies and Rhetoric (Film) at the University of California at Berkeley. An outstanding filmmaker, writer and music composer, Trinh has been honored with Guggenheim, Hewlett and Rockefeller Foundations awards as well as 32 retrospectives of her work.

The CAA Committee on Women in the Arts will honor Roth and Trinh at their Annual Award Ceremony during the CAA Conference in Boston on February 23, 2006.

Roth received her PhD from the University of California, Berkeley in 1974. From her early writings on Marcel Duchamp, the subject of her PhD dissertation, to her numerous publications on performance and
feminist art and multiculturalism, Roth has urged the discipline of art history to expand and reconfigure the scope of its vision.

Since the 1970s, Roth has worked in feminist art history and criticism, and since the 1980s, she has also worked cross-culturally with groups and conferences including the “Art of a Distinct Majority” symposia at the San Francisco Art Institute and the Asian American Women Artists Association.

Roth edited and contributed to The Amazing Decade: Women and Performance Art in America1970-1980 (1983), Connecting Conversations: Interviews with 28 Bay Area Artists (1988), We Flew Over the Bridge: The Memoirs of Faith Ringgold (1995), and Rachel Rosenthal (1997).  An anthology of her writing, Difference/Indifference: Musings on Postmodernism, Marcel Duchamp, and John Cage, with commentaries by Jonathan D. Katz, was published in 1998.

In recent years, Roth has continued to broaden her intellectual reach to encompass travel, memory, language, and artists' responses to war and its aftermath. Currently, she is working on three series of texts. The first, “Traveling Companions/Fractured Worlds,” addresses individual artists and historians, and Roth’s travels in Europe and Southeast Asia. The second, “The Library of Maps,” published in various journals, is about a fictional library and its inhabitants, set in various spaces and times. The third revolves around the life and times of Rachel Marker, a fictional Czech Jew.

In 2002-03, Roth began to work in theater, and has written five plays, as well as being involved in their directing and staging: “The Library of Maps: An Opera in Many Parts,” with composer and performer Pauline Oliveros (Oakland, CA and Troy, NY); “From Vietnam to Hollywood,” with Dinh Q Le (San Francisco); and Dancing/Dreaming: Izanami and Amaterasu” and “Amaterasu, The Blind Woman and Hiroshima” with dancer Mary Sano (San Francisco, Tokyo, Kyoto).  Readings of Roth’s plays, “Rachel Marker, Franz Kafka and Alice Sommer,” and “Through the Eyes of Rachel Marker” were staged this year in Hawaii and Berkeley, respectively.

New York Times critic Holland Cotter recently praised Roth’s text, ‘”Remnants and Reverberations: Drawing(s) in Space & Time” (Drawing Center catalog, Persistent Vestiges: Drawing from the American-Vietnam War, 2006) for its “unusual grace.”

Mills College is a nationally renowned, independent liberal arts college offering innovative degree programs for undergraduate women, and graduate degree and certificate programs for women and men. Consistently ranked among the top 75 liberal arts colleges in the nation by U.S. News & World Report, Mills is also recognized as one of the country’s 20 most diverse colleges. The Princeton Review selected Mills as one of 11 colleges for first-time inclusion in its Best 361 Colleges - 2005. Nestled in the foothills of Oakland, California on 135 lush acres, Mills provides a dynamic liberal arts education fostering women’s leadership, social responsibility, and creativity.

Deborah Dallinger
Communications Consultant

Last Updated: 12/14/05