Robert Carleton Hobbs is an art historian and curator specializing in twentieth-century art. Since 1991 he has held the Rhoda Thalhimer Endowed Chair of American Art in the School of Arts, Virginia Commonwealth University, a highly ranked art department. Since 2004 he has served as a visiting professor at Yale University. He has held positions at Cornell University, University of Iowa, Florida State University, and Tehran Museum of Contemporary Art in Iran, and is known for a number of books, in-depth essays, and exhibitions.
Born in 1946, Hobbs is the son of scientist Charles S. Hobbs, who is best known for conducting the primary research on fluorine and teeth as well as investigating, over a thirty-year period, the residual genetic effects of the nuclear fallout on beef cattle found within a 150-mile radius of Los Alamos. His mother, Corinne Clay, was a coloratura soprano with a repertoire in five languages.
While living in his family's scenic retreat where the