Photo: Annette Hornischer

Townsend Martin 1917 Professor of Art and Archaeology, Princeton University

Siemens Fellow - Class of Spring 2011


Hal Foster is an art historian and well-known author on modernist and contemporary art and theory. His numerous books include Prosthetic Gods (MIT, 2004), Design and Crime (Verso, 2002), the textbook Pop Art (Phaidon, 2005), The Return of the Real (October Books, 1996), and Compulsive Beauty (October Books, 1993). Foster’s intellectual formation took place in the cultural context of late-1970s New York, initially as a critic, then as a critical art historian. He began to write for Artforum in 1978 and was an editor at Art in America from 1981 to 1987. In 1983 he edited a seminal collection of essays on postmodernism, The Anti-Aesthetic: Essays on Postmodern Culture (Bay Press), and in 1985 published his first own collection of essays, Recodings: Art Spectacle, Cultural Politics (Bay Press). In 1987 Foster became the director of critical and curatorial studies at the Whitney Independent Study Program. Foster has been an editor of October and October Books since 1991 and writes regularly for numerous art publications, including Artforum, London Review of Books, and the New Left Review. He has been at Princeton University since 1997.