Koch, Robert 1918-2003

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KOCH, Robert 1918-2003


See index for CA sketch: Born April 17, 1918, in New York, NY; died August 13, 2003, in Stamford, CT. Educator, businessman, and author. Koch was an authority on the art of Louis Comfort Tiffany and is credited by many for reviving interest in Tiffany's glass artwork. He was educated at Harvard University, where he earned an A.B. in 1939. Serving in the U.S. Army Air Forces during World War II and achieving the rank of first lieutenant, Koch later returned to school at New York University, where he received an M.A. in 1953 before taking a doctorate at Yale in 1957. He began his academic career as an assistant instructor at Queen's College from 1951 to 1953, followed by three years as a graduate assistant at Yale. He joined Southern Connecticut State College in 1956 as an assistant professor, becoming an associate in 1959 and full professor in 1966; Koch retired as a professor emeritus in 1979. But it was through his work collecting Tiffany glass and writing about it that he really made a name for himself. It all started when he served as curator for a Tiffany exhibition at the Museum of Contemporary Crafts in New York City in 1958, a show that spurred on a new interest in the work of Tiffany. Together with his wife, Koch also ran an antiques dealership and spent what time he could searching through other shops to find rare treasures; Koch would sometimes donate the rarest of these to museums. Becoming a recognized authority on Tiffany, he penned several books on his favorite subject, including Louis C. Tiffany: Rebel in Glass (1964; third edition, 1982), Louis C. Tiffany's Art Glass (1977), and Louis C. Tiffany: The Collected Works of Robert Koch (2001). He was also the author of Will H. Bradley—American Artist in Print (2002).



New York Times, September 3, 2003, p. A17.