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Gibson, Walter

    Image Credit: Case Western Reserve University

    Full Name: Gibson, Walter

    Other Names:

    • Walter Samuel Gibson

    Gender: male

    Date Born: 1932

    Place Born: Columbus, Franklin, OH, USA

    Home Country/ies: United States

    Subject Area(s): Northern Renaissance and Renaissance

    Career(s): educators


    Norther Renaissance, particularly Bosch scholar, professor, Case Western Reserve University. Gibson’s father was Walter Samuel Gibson, an engineer and his mother, Grace B. Wheeler (Gibson), worked as a secretary. After high school, Gibson was drafted by U.S. Army during the Korean Conflict, working in the Finance Corps between 1952 and 1954. He entered Ohio State University after discharge, graduating cum laude with a B.F.A. in 1957. He matriculated at Harvard University, receiveing his M.A., in 1960. He was awarded a Fulbright scholarship, traveling to Europe for the 1960-1961 year to research his dissertation. While completing his Ph.D., he joined Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio, as an assistant professor in 1966. He remained at Case the rest of his career. His doctorate was awarded in 1969 with a dissertation on Cornelis Engebrechtsz written under Seymour Slive. He rose to associate professor at Case in 1971, chairing the department from then until 1979. The following year, 1972 Gibson married Sarah Scott, an educator and college administrator in 1972. His book on Hieronymus Bosch, appeared in 1973 followed by a revision of his dissertation and a monograph on Pieter Bruegel the Elder in 1977. Gibson was appointed Andrew W. Mellon Professor of the Humanities in 1978. He was awarded a Fulbright scholarship, traveling to Europe for the 1960-1961 year. Gibson was named a Guggenheim fellow in 1978.

    Selected Bibliography

    [dissertation:] The Paintings of Cornelis Engebrechtsz. Harvard, 1969, published, Outstanding Dissertations in the Fine Arts [series]. New York: Garland Pub., 1977; Bruegel. New York: Oxford University Press, 1977;Hieronymus Bosch: an Annotated Bibliography. Boston : G. K. Hall, 1983; Mirror of the Earth: the World Landscape in Sixteenth-century Flemish Painting. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1989; Bruegel and Netherlandish Landscape Lainting from the National Gallery Prague. Tokyo: National Museum of Western Art, 1990; Pleasant places: the Rustic Landscape from Bruegel to Ruisdael. Berkeley: University of California Press, 2000; Pieter Bruegel and the Art of Laughter. Berkeley: University of California Press, 2006.


    Dixon, Laurinda S., ed. In Detail: New Studies of Northern Renaissance Art in Honor of Walter S. Gibson. Turnhout: Brepols, 1998.


    "Gibson, Walter." Dictionary of Art Historians (website).

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