Józef Grabski

President

Józef Grabski in 1968–1972 studied art history at Warsaw University. In 1971–1972, he repeatedly held scholarships to do research at the Fondazione Cini in Venice. In 1971, he was chosen by Henryk Stażewski to be awarded the scholarship of the Herder Prize. In 1972, he continued studies in art history at the Vienna University, where four years later he defended his doctorate. During 1975–1976, undertook further studies and research-stays at the Fondazione R. Longhi and the Villa I Tatti in Florence. In 1977, he was awarded Prof. Karolina Lanckorońska’s (Foundation Lanckoroński) scholarship to pursue further research on the art of Italian Renaissance.

After the CIHA International Congress of Art History in Bologna in 1979, together with an international group of scholars (A. Chastel, J. Białostocki, F. Zeri, W. R. Rearick, H. Fillitz), he founded the International Institute for Art Historical Research IRSA (Istituto per le Ricerche di Storia dell’Arte) with headquarters in Venice and became its director. In 1980, he started publishing a scholarly art-historical journal entitled Artibus et Historiae, of which he has been the editor until now. IRSA Publishing House has hitherto published over 600 papers, written by scholars from most of European countries and many of the world.

From 1980, he worked on building a collection of fine art for Barbara Piasecka Johnson. Dr Grabski has developed special ties with Japan, where he co-created two great museum collections of European art, namely that of Marubeni and Takeuchi. Since 1992, he has held lectures as a visiting professor at the Art History Department of the Sendai University (Tohoku Daigaku). In 1996, a branch of IRSA, dealing with mutual relations of European and Asian art, was established at Sendai University (dir. Prof. Hidemichi Tanaka). Since 2008, he has been an adviser of the museums in China (Beijing, Shanghai), where he organizes art exhibitions.

Renata Stein

Vice President

Renata Stein for more than 20 years served as a curator and collections manager of the Leo Baeck Institute, an organization dedicated to documenting and preserving the art, history, and material culture of German-speaking Jewry. She established an exhibition program that highlighted unique aspects of the history of German-speaking Jewry in modern times. She has researched, conceptualized, and mounted more than 40 exhibits at the Center for Jewish History in New York, the German Embassy in Washington, and several varying venues in Germany.

Currently, she divides her time between pursuing her own art career as an artist, as a translator, and as a freelance appraiser of Judaica and European modernist art. 

She is a member of the Alliance of American Museums, Appraisers Association of America, ArtTable, Council of American Jewish Museums, The New York Circle of Translators, and POWarts. 

Anna Halbrook

Secretary/Treasurer

Anna Halbrook is a freelance linguist graduated from The Alexander Gieysztor Liberal Arts College (Poland) and George Mason University. She specializes in teaching Polish language on various levels as well as developing tests for National Foreign Language Center.