Gisela Richter

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search

Gisela Marie Augusta Richter (born 14 or 15 August 1882, in London, England; 24 December 1972, in Rome, Italy), was a classical archaeologist and art historian.[1]

Early life[edit]

Gisela Richter was born in London, England, the daughter of Jean Paul and Louise (Schwaab) Richter.[2] Both of her parents and her sister, Irma, were historians of Italian Renaissance art. She was educated at Maida Vale School, one of the finest schools for women at the time. She decided to become a classical archaeologist while attending Emmanuel Loewy's lectures at the University of Rome around 1896. In 1901 she attended Girton College at the University of Cambridge and the British School at Athens.


She joined the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York as an assistant in 1905,[3] becoming assistant curator in 1910, associate curator in 1922, and curator of Greek and Roman art in 1925, a position she held until 1948, when she became honorary curator until her death in 1972. As curator she was one of the most influential people in classical art history at the time.

She lectured at Columbia University, Yale University, Bryn Mawr College, and Oberlin College. As author of numerous popular books on classical art, she had an enormous influence on the general public's understanding and appreciation of the subject. In 1944, she received the Achievement Award from the American Association of University Women.

Death and legacy[edit]

Richter's grave in the cimitero acattolico in Rome

Richter died in Rome, Italy, in 1972. She is buried in Rome's Cimitero acattolico.

Writing 30 years after Richter's death, Camille Paglia paid tribute to her "for her clarity and rigor of mind; her fineness of sensibility and connoisseurship; her attention to detail and her power of observation and deduction; her mastery of form and design."

Selected publications[edit]


References and sources[edit]

  1. ^ Judy Barrett Litoff; Judith McDonnell (1994). European Immigrant Women in the United States: A Biographical Dictionary. Taylor & Francis. pp. 245–. ISBN 978-0-8240-5306-2. 
  2. ^ Richter, Gisela M[arie] A[ugusta] Dictionary of Art Historians, 2013. Retrieved 16 September 2013. Archived here.
  3. ^ Stephen L. Dyson (January 1998). Ancient Marbles to American Shores: Classical Archaeology in the United States. University of Pennsylvania Press. pp. 147–. ISBN 0-8122-3446-4. 
  • My Memoirs: Recollections of an Archaeologist's Life, by Gisela Richter, 1972.
  • "Gisela Richter," in Notable American Women, ed. Barbara Sicherman and Carol H. Green, 1980.
  • "Scholar of Classical Art and Museum Archaeologist," in Women as Interpreters of the Visual Arts, 1820-1979, ed. Claire R. Sherman,1981
  • "Gisela Richter," in Invisible Giants: 50 Americans That Shaped the Nation but Missed the History Books, Oxford University Press; March 2002.

External links[edit]