Skip to main content

The Thomas prize is awarded annually for best undergraduate student paper in art history. The award is named for Professor Sidney Thomas (1915-2009), a member of the department from 1961-1985. Initially trained in literary studies, Thomas began his academic career as a Shakespeare scholar before moving into art history upon his arrival at Syracuse University. Deeply devoted to humanistic scholarship, Thomas edited two benchmark publications in this area: The Nature of Art (with John Gassner, 1964) and Images of Man: Selected Readings in Arts and Ideas in Western Civilization (1972). 

2016               Sarah Poisner

                           Diana and Her Nymphs: The Mystery of Vermeer´s Early Career

2015               Alice Blank

                           Furnishing Helena’s Conformist Hell: An Analysis of Gothic Tropes and the Captive Maiden Archetype in Mirrormask

2010               Sarah Capper

                           Drawing through a Sculptor’s Eyes: An Analysis of Half Figure by Henry Moore

2008               Meghan Maher

                           Enamel Reliquaries: Chasse with Crucifixion and Christ in Majesty

2007               Sarah Parker

                          Where the Rainbow Really Ends: An essay on Patrick Hughes’ Painting The End of the Rainbows

2005               Brendon Kean

                           The Transept of Notre-Dame

2004               Jon Chonko

                           Boyd and Evans 22b Balcombe Street

2003               Cara Coughlin

                           The Urban Worker: A Modern Interpretation of a Modern Theme

2001               Jason Lamphier

                           Blessed or Oppressed?: A Look at Nelson’s Junk Aesthetic

1999               Elizabeth Manton

                           Patronage and Collectors of Bosch

1998               Elizabeth Manton

                          The Iconographic Traditions of the Garden of Love and their Influence on 17th Century Dutch Garden Imagery

1997               Sarah Murphy

                           Howard Hodgkin, Representationally Abstract

1996               Robyn Fleming

                          The ‘Noble’ Art of Painting: A Study of Self-Identity in the Works of Two Seventeenth-Century Dutch Painters

1995               Stacy Gerber

                          Arthur B. Carles and Jonas Lie: A Comparison of Two Twentieth-Century American Painters

1993               Jennifer Duehn

                           Frogs, Toads, and Bosch: an Examination of Selected Works

1991               Michelle Langin

                           The Choir Screen of the Cathedral of Strasbourg

1990               Melissa Joulwan                

                           Capturing the Donna Mobile

1989               Juanita Grupe

                           Bruegel’s Enigmatic Dulle Griet

1988               Gary Jones

                          The German Meistersinger Tradition and its Impact on the (Early 16th Century Protestant Reformation Borrowing, vis., Martin Luther and the Emerging) Lutheran Hymn Tradition

1986               Stephen Bluto (co-winner)

                           The Design Elements of the Cosmatesque Pavement

                       Julie Moffat (co-winner)

                           Selected Iconographical Interpretations of the Van der Paele Madonna

1985               Janet Kraus

                           Hector Berlioz’s Personality and its Influence on his Musical Career

n.b. – prior to 2007, the Thomas Award was presented to both art history and music history papers