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Joan Hugo

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Hugo, Joan (76)
Active in the Los Angeles art community since 1950, died February 7 of complications from heart surgery. Trained as a librarian, she became the library director at the Otis Art Institute in 1957 and under her leadership the school's modest collection began to evolve and was soon recognized nationally as one of a small number of art libraries that became the new model of art librarianship. After more than two decades as the director of the Otis Library, she left the field, moving on to teaching and to art writing. She was the Southern California editor of ARTWEEK from 1980 to 1990 and was the West Coast editor for The New Art Examiner for four years. She wrote numerous reviews for a variety of art magazines and wrote catalogue essays for many Los Angeles artists. Hugo was a founding board member at the Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions (LACE) and was a frequent moderator and participant on many arts' panels. She was a much sought-after translator of French arts scholarship and writings and was the curator of the internationally renowned exhibition Artwords and Bookwords which was sponsored by the Los Angeles Institute of Contemporary Art. For eleven years she served as the assistant to the provost at the California Institute of the Arts (CalArts), a position which health problems forced her to leave. Hugo's support and encouragement of innovative artists was recognized recently by LA Artcore.
Published in the Los Angeles Times on Feb. 14, 2006
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