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Chipp, Herschel B.

    Full Name: Chipp, Herschel B.

    Other Names:

    • Herschel Browning Chipp

    Gender: male

    Date Born: 09 November 1913

    Date Died: 08 February 1992

    Place Born: New Hampton, Harrison, MO, USA

    Place Died: San Francisco, San Francisco, CA, USA

    Home Country/ies: United States

    Subject Area(s): Cubist

    Career(s): educators


    Scholar of Cubism; University of California, Berkeley professor of Art, 1953-1979. Chipp was born to George C. Chipp, an executive and Susie Browning (Chipp). He worked as a poster artist in Los Angeles between 1938-1941. Chipp served during World War II in the U. S. Navy, 1941-1945 and was present at the bombing of Pearl Harbor.  A distinguished soldier, he rose to the rank of lieutenant and was awarded sixteen battle stars as well as the Presidential Unit Citation. At the liberation of Paris, he met Pablo Picasso, whetting his interest in Cubism.  He was married to his wife, Heide, in 1944.

    He graduated from the University of California, Berkeley, with a B.A., in 1947, receiving an M.A., in 1948. He secured a Fulbright fellowship for graduate study at the University of Paris, Institute of Art and Archaeology, between 1951-1952 before completing his Ph.D., at Columbia University in 1954 where he lectured as a graduate student, 1950-1953. His dissertation, written under Meyer Schapiro, was on French Cubism. A Fulbright scholar in Paris, he studied at the Sorbonne and the Ecole du Louvre and also in Munich at the Zentralinstitut für Kunstgeschichte. He joined the faculty at the University of California, Berkeley, as an assistant professor in 1953. He was director of the College Art Association from 1960-1964. He worked tirelessly to create a campus art museum. His eventual creation, the University Art Gallery, (in 1970 renamed the University Art Museum) appointed him acting director. He was made full professor of art history in 1962.  In 1965, Peter H. Selz replaced Chipp as director of the Gallery. Chipp was awarded a faculty research fellowship in Berkeley in 1967. In 1968, Chipp, together with Selz and Joshua C. Taylor edited the first publication of primary source documents for art history, Theories of Modern Art: A Source Book by Artists and Critics. He retired from Berkeley, emeritus, in 1979. In retirement he published his study Picasso’s Guernica, published in 1988.  In the 1990’s he joined Alan Wofsy to lead the “Picasso Project,” an initiative to issue a catalogue raisonné of that artist’s work. He suffered a stroke in 1992 and died in a San Francisco hospital.  His students included Joel Isaacson.

    Selected Bibliography

    • [dissertation:] Cubism: 1907-1914.  Columbia University, 1955.
    • and Richardson, Brenda. Jugendstil & Expressionism in German Posters. Berkeley: University of California, 1965;
    • [edited, with Selz, Peter, and Taylor, Joshua. Theories of Modern Art: A Source Book by Artists and Critics. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1968;
    • and Phillips, Laughlin, and Cafritz, Robert C. Georges Braque: the Late Paintings, 1940-1963. Washington, DC: Phillips Collection, 1982;
    • and Tusell, Javier. Picasso’s Guernica: History, Transformations, Meanings. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1988;
    • [directed project] and Wofsy, Alan. Picasso’s Paintings, Watercolors, Drawings and Sculpture, 1885-1973: the Picasso Project. San Francisco: Alan Wofsy Fine Arts, 1995ff.



    Contributors: Emily Crockett and Lee Sorensen


    Emily Crockett and Lee Sorensen. "Chipp, Herschel B.." Dictionary of Art Historians (website).

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