SUNY Art History Lecture Series Announces “Calvert Vaux and the Romantic Vision of Architecture and Landscape Design”

NEW PALTZ — On Thursday, November 2, 2000, SUNY New Paltz and the Art History Association welcome Professor Francis R. Kowsky of SUNY Buffalo for a lecture on the work of architect Calvert Vaux. The lecture begins at 7:00 PM in Lecture Center 102 and is free and open to all.

Francis Kowsky teaches in the Art History Department at Buffalo and is the author of many articles and books on 19th-century American architects. He has been a member of the New York State Board for Historic Preservation and a trustee of the Preservation League of New York State. In 1998, Oxford University Press published his book Country, Park and City: The Architecture and Life of Calvert Vaux. According to the New York Times, Kowsky’s work is “a handsome effort to rescue from comparative oblivion the architect who shared – sometimes more than equally – with Frederick Law Olmstead in the design of Central Park and other New York amenities.”

Mr. Kowsky’s slide-illustrated lecture will review Vaux’s association with Andrew Jackson Downing and his longtime friendship with Frederick Law Olmstead. A crusader for the professionalization of landscape architecture, Vaux, with Olmstead, initiated the American park movement. Kowsky will also discuss many buildings that Vaux, who trained as an architect in London, designed in America. These included houses in his beloved Hudson Valley (among them artist Frederic Church’s Olana), park structures (especially his many splendid bridges in Central Park) and institutional buildings (notably, the original portions of the Metropolitan Museum of Art and American Museum of Natural History).

The Art History Lecture Series is organized by the Art History Association of SUNY New Paltz, a funded member of the Student Association. For more information on this and other Arts Events at SUNY New Paltz, visit our online calendar at or call 845-257-3872.

Photographs of Calvert Vaux’s work are available online at