Seymour Slive
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Seymour Slive

Seymour Slive
Seymour Slive

September 15, 1920 (1920-09-15)
Chicago, Illinois, United States
DiedJune 14, 2014 (2014-06-15) (aged 93)
Alma materUniversity of Chicago
Zoya Gregorevna Sandomirsky (m. 1946)
Parent(s)Daniel Slive
Sophia (Rapoport) Slive

Seymour Slive (September 15, 1920 - June 14, 2014) was an American art historian, who served as director of the Harvard Art Museums from 1975 to 1991. He was a scholar of Dutch art and more specifically of Rembrandt, Frans Hals, and Jacob van Ruisdael.[1][2]


The portrait of Isabella Coymans was selected as the cover of Seymour Slive's exhibition catalogue of Frans Hals paintings in 1989

A Chicago native and the son of Russian-Jewish immigrants Daniel and Sophia (Rapoport) Slive, Seymour received his BA in 1943 and PhD in 1952, both from the University of Chicago. He served in the Naval Reserve during World War II, starting in his Junior year of college, and in active duty in the Pacific Theater from 1942 to 1946.

Slive was appointed to his first teaching position at Oberlin College in 1950, but soon moved on to Pomona College, where he became an assistant professor of art and chair of department from 1952 to 1954. While there, he published his first book, Rembrandt and His Critics, 1630-1730. In 1954, he joined Harvard University, where he became a full professor seven years later in 1961. He was appointed chair of the Department of Fine Arts in 1968, remaining in the post until 1971. He lectured as the Slade Professor of Fine Art at Oxford University during the 1972/1973 academic year. In 1973, Slive was appointed Gleason Professor of Fine Arts and later concurrently became Director of the University's Harvard Art Museums in 1975. He was the founded director under the museum's creation and expansion of the Arthur M. Sackler Museum. He retired emeritus from Harvard in 1991 as the Elizabeth and John Moore Cabot Founding Director of the Harvard University Art Museums.[3]

In 2014, Slive was bestowed the honorary degree of Doctor of Arts from Harvard University for his contributions to the world of fine art.[4]


  • Rembrandt and His Critics, 1630-1730, 1953, ISBN 0878173110
  • Frans Hals, Volume 1 (His life and state of the literature), 1970, ISBN 071481444X
    • Frans Hals, Volume 3 (a catalog raisonné), National gallery of Art: Kress Foundation, Studies in the History of European Art, London - Phaidon Press, 1974
  • Jacob van Ruisdael, 1981, ISBN 0896592375
  • Frans Hals, by Slive as editor, with contributions by Pieter Biesboer, Martin Bijl, Karin Groen and Ella Hendriks, Michael Hoyle, Frances S. Jowell, Koos Levy-van Halm and Liesbeth Abraham, Bianca M. Du Mortier, Irene van Thiel-Stroman, Prestel-Verlag, Munich & Mercatorfonds, Antwerp, 1989, ISBN 3791310321
  • Dutch Painting: 1600-1800, 1995, ISBN 0300064187
  • Jacob van Ruisdael: A Complete Catalogue of His Paintings, Drawings, and Etchings, 2001, ISBN 0300089724
  • Shop Talk: Studies in Honor of Seymour Slive, 2006, ISBN 0916724859
  • Rembrandt Drawings, 2009, ISBN 9780892369768
  • Jacob van Ruisdael: Windmills and Water Mills, 2011, ISBN 9781606060551
  • "A Print after Jacob van Ruisdael", in Print Quarterly, XXIX, September 2012, pp. 320-21.


External links

  • Profile at Dictionary of Art Historians
  • Profile at International Dictionary of Art Historians

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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