PUBLICATIONS

 

Van Gogh: The Life

Steven Naifeh and Gregory White Smith galvanized readers with their astonishing Jackson Pollock: An American Saga, winner of the Pulitzer Prize for biography, a book acclaimed for its miraculous research and overwhelming narrative power. In Van Gogh: The Life, Naifeh and Smith have written another tour de force—an exquisitely detailed, compellingly readable, and ultimately heartbreaking portrait of creative genius Vincent van Gogh.

The biography, which was a New York Times bestseller, has been translated into Chinese, Dutch, French, German, Korean, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, and Spanish and is being translated into Italian and Japanese.

The definitive biography for decades to come.
— Leo Jansen, Curator, the Van Gogh Museum and Co-editor, Vincent van Gogh: The Complete Letters
In their magisterial new biography, Van Gogh: The Life, Steven Naifeh and Gregory White Smith provide a guided tour through the personal world and work of that Dutch painter, shining a bright light on the evolution of his art. . . . What [the authors] capture so powerfully is Van Gogh’s extraordinary will to learn, to persevere against the odds.
— Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times
 
Brilliant ... Steven Naifeh and Gregory White Smith are the big-game hunters of modern art history ... [Van Gogh] rushes along on a tide of research ... At once a model of scholarship and an emotive, pacy chunk of hagiography.
— Martin Herbert, The Daily Telegraph (London)
 
 

Jackson Pollock: An American Saga

Jackson Pollock was more than a great artist, he was a creative force of nature. He changed not only the course of Western art, but our very definition of “art.” He was the quintessential tortured genius, an American Vincent van Gogh, cut from the same unconforming cloth as his contemporaries Ernest Hemingway and James Dean–and tormented by the same demons; a “cowboy artist” who rose from obscurity to take his place among the titans of modern art, and whose paintings now command millions of dollars.

Naifeh and Smith portray the life behind that extraordinary achievement–the disjointed childhood, the sibling rivalry, the sexual ambiguity, and the artistic frustration out of which both artist and art developed. The biography won the Pulitzer Prize in 1991. It was a finalist for the National Book Award, the basis of the Academy Award-winning film “Pollock,” an inspiration for John Updike’s Seek My Face, and a New York Times bestseller. It was translated into French and Spanish.

Amazing … An extraordinarily riveting work, full of miraculous research.
— Meryle Secrest, Chicago Sun-Times
Clearly the definitive work.
— Stephen Amidon, Financial Times (London)
The most thoroughly detailed portrait ever of a U.S. artist. It’s as imposing as a history book, as entertaining as a novel and as close as the reader may ever come to sharing the breadth - and sensing the madness - of artistic genius and the genesis of a masterpiece.
— David Zimmerman, USA Today
Unprecedented ... Never before have we had such a thorough and affecting account of an American artist.
— Artelia Court, Los Angeles Times
 

Gene Davis

A monograph on the seminal Washington Color School painter, Gene Davis, known for his elaborate orchestrations of vertical stripes, based on Naifeh's Harvard University Ph.D. dissertation.

Culture Making: Money, Success and the New York Art World

An analysis of the economics of New York art world, based on Naifeh’s prize-winning undergraduate thesis at Princeton University.

 

 

EXHIBITION CATALOGS

 

Columbia Museum of Art

Published in May 2013, this catalogue accompanied The Columbia Museum of Art’s retrospective museum exhibition of Naifeh’s paintings and sculpture entitled “Found in Translation: The Art of Steven Naifeh.” Twenty-six large-scale works were on view in the CMA special exhibition galleries from May 18 to September 1, 2013.

Leila Heller Gallery

Published in March 2014 by the Leila Heller Gallery, this catalogue accompanied the artist’s exhibition Found in Translation: The Art of Steven Naifeh, which ran jointly at the Leila Heller Gallery in New York, March 27-April 26, 2014, and at MANA Contemporary in Hoboken, New Jersey, March 2-Augsut 31, 2014. Essay by Heather Ecker.

 

 

ARTICLES ON ART

 

“Gene Davis: Equinox”

with Gregory White Smith, in Kerner, Joseph D., and Jane E. Neidhardt, eds., A Gallery of Modern Art at Washington University in St. Louis, St. Louis: The Washington University Gallery of Art, 1994

“Jackson Pollock: Under Fire”

with Gregory White Smith, The New York Times, June 9, 1991

“Jackson in Action”

with Gregory White Smith, Mirabella, November 1989

“The Myth of Oshogbo”

African Arts, February 1981

“Beyond the Stripe”

Art International, September-October, 1980

“Gene Davis”

Arts Magazine, October 1979
 

 

Selected Lectures on Art

 

“Bridging Worlds – Contemporary Art and the Art of Islam”

“4th Annual Juried International Exhibition of Contemporary Islamic Art,” Dallas, Texas, October 10, 2015

“On Jackson Pollock: Psychobiography with Dr. Gail Saltz”

92nd Street Y, Tribeca, New York, November 20, 2014

 “Van Gogh Repetitions: Conversation with Eliza Rathbone”

Phillips Collection, Washington, DC, November 14, 2013

“Van Gogh Repetitions: Conversation with Teachers”

Phillips Collection, Washington, DC, November 13, 2013

“’Pollock’: The Film”

Columbia Museum of Art, August 18, 2013

“Steven Naifeh: Found in Translation”

Columbia Museum of Art, May 19, 2013

“On Vincent van Gogh: Psychobiography with Dr. Gail Saltz”

92nd Street Y, New York, December 7, 2012

“Becoming Van Gogh: Discussion with Timothy Standring and Louis van Tilborgh”

Denver Art Museum, Denver, Colorado, October 20, 2012

“Vincent van Gogh: The Life”

Philadelphia Museum of Art, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, February 12, 2012

“Vincent van Gogh: The Life”

Columbia Museum of Art, Columbia, South Carolina, January 20, 2012

“Vincent van Gogh: The Life”

Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Texas, December 15, 2011

“Vincent van Gogh: The Life”

Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, Illinois, December 8, 2011

“Vincent van Gogh: The Life”

Old Masters’ Society, Chicago, Illinois, December 7, 2011

“Vincent van Gogh: The Life”

The Royal Academy, London, The United Kingdom, November 25, 2011

“Vincent van Gogh: The Life: Discussion with Ann Dumas”

The Royal Academy of Arts Salon, London, The United Kingdom, November 24, 2011

“Vincent van Gogh: The Life”

The John Adams Institute, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, November 22, 2011

“Vincent van Gogh: The Life”

Los Angeles County Museum of Art, November 19, 2011

“Vincent van Gogh: The Life: Discussion with Lawrence J. Feinberg”

Santa Barbara Museum of Art, November 16, 2011

“Jackson Pollock and Vincent van Gogh”

Dallas Museum of Art, November 14, 2011

“Vincent van Gogh: The Life”

Arizona Women’s Board Author Luncheon, November 11, 2011

“Vincent van Gogh: The Life: Discussion with Timothy J. Standring”

Denver Art Museum, Denver, Colorado, November 10, 2011

“Vincent van Gogh: The Life”

The Columbus Academy, November 8, 2011

“Jackson Pollock and Vincent van Gogh”

High Museum, Atlanta Georgia, November 5, 2011

“Vincent van Gogh: The Life”

Politics & Prose, Washington, DC, November 2, 2011

“Vincent van Gogh: The Life: Discussion with Judith Thurman”

The Juilliard School, New York, New York, November 3, 2011

“Vincent van Gogh: The Life: Discussion with George Shackelford”

Boston Museum of Fine Arts, November 2, 2011

“Vincent van Gogh: The Life”

Metropolitan Museum of Art, November 1, 2011

“Jackson Pollock and Vincent van Gogh”

High Museum, Atlanta, Georgia, April 25, 2009

“Jackson Pollock and Vincent van Gogh”

The State University of New York at Stonybrook, under the auspices of the Pollock-Krasner House & Study Center, July 20, 2008

“Jackson Pollock”

Oberlin College, Oberlin, Ohio, March 8, 1990

“Pillars of Wisdom: New Buildings for the World of Islam”

Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts, 1980

“Contemporary African Art”

Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts, and Wellesley College, Wellesley, Massachusetts, 1979

“The New York School”

The College Art Association, Washington, DC, 1974

“Picasso: The Tragedy”

The National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC, 1974

“Modern Art”

The American Center Auditorium, Karachi, Pakistan, August 18, 1971