JOANNA FRUEH (b: 1948) was an artist, writer and feminist scholar who passed away on this date. In 2008 she was awarded a Women’s Caucus for Art Lifetime Achievement Award. Her book Monster Beauty: Building the Body of Love, dealing with the aesthetics of beauty, pleasure and the erotic in everyday life was published by the University of California Press. Her writing combined theory with autobiography, photography, and poetry to develop these concepts. She was also a performance artist. Frueh received her Ph.D. from the University of Chicago in History of Culture. She was Professor of Art History Emerita at the University of Nevada, Reno, where she served from 1990 to 2006. Prior to that she was Assistant Professor of art history at Oberlin College, Oberlin, Ohio, (1983-1985) and the University of Arizona, Tucson (1981-1983). She authored and edited several books, notably Erotic Faculties (University of California Press, 1996) and Hannah Wilke: A Retrospective (1989); and was co-editor of Picturing the Modern Amazon (2000), Feminist Art Criticism: Art, Identity, Action (1994), and Feminist Art Criticism: An Anthology (1991). She wrote articles and reviews for Art in America, Art Journal, Afterimage, High Performance Magazine, and New Art Examiner, among others.
Joanna Frueh died in Tucson, Arizona on February 20, 2020 due to complications from breast cancer and is survived by her spouse Kathleen Williamson and collaborator Jill O’Bryan. Her personal archives are at Stanford University.