Passings: David R. Smith, Professor Emeritus of Art History

David R. Smith

Professor emeritus David R. Smith passed away on July 30, 2016 at his home in Maine. He was 70 years old. Professor Smith joined the UNH faculty as an art historian in 1979 after earning his Ph.D. from Columbia a year earlier. He retired in 2015. He taught courses all all levels, from broad introductory art history courses to more specialized courses in Rococo, Baroque, Northern Renaissance, Greek and Roman art. He published many articles, exhibition essays and catalogues, book chapters and books including his 2012 edited collection, “Parody and Festivity in Early Modern Art : Essays on Comedy as Social Vision”  (Ashgate) and his 1982 book, “Masks of Wedlock: Seventeenth-century Dutch Marriage Portraiture” (UMI Research Press).

“Professor Smith was an unusually gifted lecturer, with rare expertise in Dutch art and culture, whose classes were overenrolled for many years,” notes Craig Hood, professor and chair of the UNH Department of Art and Art History.

A memorial service will be held on Saturday, September 10, 2016 at 11 a.m. at the Newmarket Community Church located at 137 Main Street in Newmarket, NH. The service will be followed by a brief reception.

In lieu of flowers, the family is asking for donations toward the publishing costs of Professor Smith’s last book, “Privacy and Civilization in Dutch Art 1650-1700,” which is now awaiting publication at the University of Delaware Press. The book is a fundamental rethinking of the forms and meanings of Dutch realism, based on a dichotomy between private and public sensibilities that looks forward to modernity. Donations can be made at

Read the obituary published in

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