BRIARCLIFF MANOR, N.Y. – Robert Hughes, a famed art critic and longtime Briarcliff Manor resident, died Aug. 6 at Calvary Hospital in the Bronx after a long llness. He was 74.
A native of Australia, he spent 30 years as chief art critic at Time magazine. Hughes was known for his acute and occasionally biting prose.
He was born July 28, 1938, in Sydney to Geoffrey Hughes and Eleanor Sealy. He studied the arts and then architecture at the University of Sydney. Hughes was married to Doris Downes, an artist.
Hughes was the author several books, including "The Fatal Shore," a history of Australia published in 1988 that became an international best seller. His eight-part documentary about modernism, "The Shock of the New," garnered millions of viewers on BBC and PBS.
In a 2006 profile of Hughes, The New York Times wrote that he was a big man who "lived large." It goes on to say that Hughes rode a motorcycle, attended New York parties with a cockatoo on his shoulder and went deep-sea fishing. A carpenter, he once built his wife a wooden jewelry box, which he planned to fill with jewels.
Hughes divided his time between a loft in Manhattan's SoHo neighborhood and a five-acre farmhouse in Briarcliff Manor. Funeral arrangements will be announced.