Middlebury College Museum of Art

Thursday, March 2

“A Twitch Upon the Thread”: The Parthenon, Genealogy, Ritual, and Resonance

Illustrated Lecture
Time: 4:30pm
Location: Mahaney Center for the Arts, Dance Theatre

Dr. Joan B. Connelly, Professor of Classics and Art History, New York University


The interpretation of the Parthenon Frieze as somehow depicting an episode in the Panathenaic procession has uneasily prevailed for well over two centuries. Dr. Joan B. Connelly, Professor of Classics and Art History, New York University and author of The Parthenon Enigma (2014), has proposed a radically new reading of the frieze as depicting a foundation myth, in the process overhauling our understanding of the temple as a whole. Cosponsored by the Middlebury College Museum of Art, the Department of History of Art and Architecture, and the Director of the Arts.

Parthenon north frieze

Thursday, March 9

Making Sense of our Selfie Nation

Illustrated Lecture
Time: 4:30pm
Location: Mahaney Center for the Arts, Room 125

Richard Saunders, Museum Director


Richard Saunders, director of the Middlebury College Museum of Art and author of American Faces: A Cultural History of Portraiture and Identity. Today selfies are everywhere. In 2015 Snapchat reported that almost 9,000 images were posted to its site each second and of these 5% were selfies. But how has modern technology and the proliferation of the selfie changed how Americans, as well as people most everywhere, choose to retain and share with others images of themselves? Is the smartphone simply the latest device to allow us to continue to retain and share only those images of ourselves that reinforce our own idealized self-image? Sponsored by the Middlebury College Museum of Art in conjunction with the concurrent exhibition American Faces: A Cultural History of Portraiture and Identity.

Obama selfie with prime ministers

Friday, March 10

Solomon Northup’s Middlebury Connection

Gallery Talk
Time: 12:15pm
Location: Middlebury College Museum of Art, Cerf Gallery

Bill Hart and Amy Morsman, Associate Professors of History


In conjunction with the Museum’s portraits of Henry Bliss Northup (Middlebury Class of 1829) and his wife Electa, Associate Professors of History Bill Hart and Amy Morsman will discuss their respective research projects on the Northup family and their dramatic place in the story of race, slavery, and freedom in antebellum America. They will be joined by Melissa Surrette ’16 and Elizabeth Sawyer ’19, students who assisted them in their projects. Henry’s kinsman Solomon Northup, whose memoir 12 Years a Slave provided the narrative basis for the eponymous Academy Award-winning film (on view in the MCA the same evening), holds a significant place in their investigations. This event is part of the Fridays at the Museum lecture series.

oil on canvas portrait of Henry Bliss Northup

Friday, March 10

12 Years a Slave

Film Screening
Time: 7:00pm
Location: Mahaney Center for the Arts, Robison Concert Hall

Join us for the public screening of 12 Years a Slave [2013], the Academy Award-winning film based on Solomon Northup’s 1853 memoir of the same name. It was Henry Bliss Northup, Middlebury Class of 1829, who rescued Solomon from slavery. The film will be introduced by Associate Professor of History William Hart, whose research of this highly dramatic historical event is in the current issue of Middlebury College magazine. Co-sponsored by the Middlebury College Museum of Art and the Program in Film & Media Culture. Free

twelve years a slave

Friday, March 17

New Horizons in Chinese Gold in the Han Dynasty

Illustrated Lecture
Time: 12:15pm
Location: Mahaney Center for the Arts, Room 125

Sarah Laursen, Robert P. Youngman ’64 Curator of Asian Art


Assistant Professor of History of Art and Architecture and Robert P. Youngman ’64 Curator of Asian Art Sarah Laursen examines the production of gold objects during the Han dynasty, when China increased its contact with other states and became integrated into trade networks like the Silk Road. This lecture will explore the foreign styles, techniques, and forms that first appear in the Han dynasty, as well as the use of gold as a marker of elite status and official rank, a tool for diplomacy, and an international currency and commodity. Please arrive early, seating is limited. Part of the Fridays at the Museum series.

Zhongguo jinyin boli falang qi quanji