American art historian. He was born in New York and studied at Columbia College (BA 1929), Harvard University (MA 1931), and New York University (PhD 1937). From 1934 he held various teaching positions, and in 1957 he became professor of art history at New York University. He wrote mainly on late 19th- and 20th-century art, his books including Primitivism in Modern Painting (1938; revised edn, as Primitivism in Modern Art, 1967), which was a pioneering work on the subject, Gauguin (1957), What is Modern Sculpture? (1969), and the posthumously published Symbolism (1979). Goldwater was married to Louise Bourgeois.