Middlebury College Museum of Art

Engagement from Home

WE ARE EXCITED TO ANNOUNCE that beginning April 15, 2022 the museum—and its spring 2022 exhibits—will be open to all visitors, no reservations required. In accordance with current Middlebury College guidelines, masks are optional but encouraged.

For those who are not able to visit us in person, we invite you to connect with art remotely by browsing the selection of virtual engagement offerings on this page, reading our blog, and interacting with us @middartmuseum via Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Additionally, many of our upcoming events will have online components, allowing everyone to participate from home.

 

Join Our Email List

If you find that you’re enjoying the diverse selection of content on this page, sign up to receive our periodic Museum To Go email blasts designed to keep you up to date on all of our latest news, exhibits, collections announcements, and upcoming events. Roughly once a month we’ll send short bits of museum-related content staight to your inbox for you to explore at your leisure.

Beyond the Museum Walls


Middlebury’s Community Murals

In April of 2018, five street artists hailing from cities located between Vermont and Mexico came together for a weeklong residency at Middlebury to conduct hands-on painting workshops and create a new community mural inside the McCullough Student Center. The artists—Will Kasso Condry, Isaias Crow, Daniel “Pose 2” Hopkins, Marthalicia Matarrita, and Scottie Raymound—led students through multiple creative planning sessions and, with students painting along side them, strikingly transformed the building’s first floor while adding a significant new piece to the College’s public art collection.

Related stories:
Completed Mural Transforms McCullough Student Center
Street Artists Discuss the Power of Art to Build Community
New Mural Reflects Student Experience

Ben Eine Tags the Museum

In the spring of 2015 London based street and graffiti artist Ben Eine, during a week-long residency at the Middlebury College Museum of Art as part of the exhibition Outside In: Art of the Street, reimagined the museum’s lobby entrance with the help of Blackbook Gallery’s Tom Horne and the museum’s Exhibits Intern Samantha Wood ’15. The following timelapse video shows the entire effort condensed to less than three minutes.

Public Art at Middlebury

Middlebury’s distinguished campus collection of public art, one of the most important of any American liberal arts college, includes 27 works—mostly sculpture—by 31 different artists, many of them nationally or internationally known. While the campus is currently closed to the public due to social distancing guidelines, you can still (digitally) have an individual guided tour of the collection. On several occasions John Hunisak, Professor Emeritus of History of Art and Architecture and the original chair of the Committee on Art in Public Places, has led groups on a walking tour of Middlebury’s public art. A few years ago we turned his popular tour, which includes most of the works in the collection, into a YouTube playlist embedded here for you to explore.

Additionally, for those who want to see where the various works are located on campus, a Story Map version of the tour, with brief informational texts for most works, is embedded below or available here.

And for those who simply cannot make it to campus, we offer some short seasonal video highlights of the public art collection, embedded below. Enjoy!

 

 

Audience Inspiration and Creativity


Visitor Reactions to Our Collections

We’ve assembled a handful (more coming soon) of artworks from our collection which we believe will spark many different reactions within our visitors, and we’d love to see / hear / experience / share those reactions. We’re inviting you to respond in whatever format feels right and natural for you. Some ideas include haikus, limericks, or other forms of poetry, captions, paintings, drawings, music, or dance. You can share your images, videos, and/or written reactions with us @middartmuseum on social media and tag your posts with #MiddCovidCreativity, or email them to museum@middlebury.edu and we’ll share them for you (be sure to indicate how you’d like to be credited). We look forward to seeing your creative side!

Anonymous (Chinese), Entertainer

Anonymous (Chinese), Entertainer Holding Drum, 206 BCE–220 CE, Han dynasty, terracotta.

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Anonymous (Syrian), Nilotic Border Mosaic

Anonymous (Syrian), Nilotic Border Mosaic, c. 5th-6th century, early Byzantine, stone and glass tesserae, 24 x 37 x 1 7/8 inches.

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Rob de Oude, Quadrant/3

Rob de Oude (Dutch, born 1970), Quadrant/3, 2014, color pencil on paper, 14 x 14 inches.

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Karel Appel, Stalking Cat

Karel Appel (Dutch, 1921–2006), Stalking Cat from the portfolio Cats, 1978, lithograph on paper.

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Scylla about to Hurl a Rock

Anonymous (Etruscan), Bronze Figurine of Scylla about to Hurl a Rock, c. 4th century B.C.E., bronze, cast, H. 2 1/8 inches.

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Paula Wilson, Remodeled, 2007

Paula Wilson (American, born 1975), Remodeled, 2007, relief woodcut, offset lithograph, silkscreen with handcoloring and collaged elements, 19 1/2 x 25 3/4 inches.

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Berenice Abbott, Seagulls

Berenice Abbott (American, 1898–1991), Seagulls, c. 20th century, gelatin silver print, 10 1/2 x 10 7/16 inches.

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George Henry Smillie, Bread Loaf, Vermont

George Henry Smillie (American, 1840–1921), Bread Loaf, Vermont, 1903, watercolor and pencil on paper, 14 1/2 x 21 1/2 inches.

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Highlights from the Collection


A Pair of Six-Panel Screens Depicting Twelve Chapters from The Tale of Genji

The thousand-year-old Japanese classic The Tale of Genji is acclaimed as the world’s first novel, and in it female author Murasaki Shikibu perceptively explores the minds of young men and women caught in the political and romantic intrigues of the imperial court.

James Hope, A Marble Quarry, 1851

At the time James Hope painted this view of Sheldon’s and Slason’s Marble Quarry, the marble business was poised to become one of Vermont’s leading industries. America’s first commercial marble quarry opened thirty miles to the south in Dorset, Vermont, in 1785. By 1890 Vermont contributed 62 percent of the nation’s marble production.

You can find more of these focused object spotlights on our Collection Highlights page. To search the collection more broadly, visit our collections database.

 

Virtual Gallery Tours and Online Exhibitions


Votes...for Women? 3D tour

While a relative few voices publicly questioned the prohibition against women voting in the decades following the country’s founding, most Americans did not wholeheartedly consider this question until the last century. The activists who took on the cause of woman suffrage came from all walks of life and all corners of the country. Votes...for Women?—an exhibit of vintage photographs, banners, and memorabilia curated by Professor of History Amy Morsman with help from students in her first-year seminar The Woman Question: Pondering Women’s Place in a Changing Society—debuted in September 2019 to coincide with the 100th anniversary of the campaign to ratify the 19th Amendment to the US Constitution in 1920. This 360-degree tour allows visitors to walk through the exhibit as though it were still on view. Special Thanks to Luke Hollis at Archimedes Digital for scanning and building this tour.

Vermont Art Online

Recently two of our colleagues here at Middlebury—our Curator of Asian Art Sarah Laursen and our Sabarsky Graduate Fellow Sarah Briggs—launched a new initiative, www.vermontartonline.org, which lets families, students, educators, and the public enjoy Vermont’s museums and galleries from the comfort and safety of their own homes. You can take a tour of our galleries in the example below, or visit Vermont Art Online for more virtual 360-degree tours of participating cultural sites as well as ideas for and links to videos, classes, and online arts activities that you can do at home.

NWxNE: Middlebury’s Assyrian Relief

detail of Winged Genie Polinating the Date Palm, Assyrian
Anonymous (Assyrian), Winged Genie Pollinating the Date Palm, 883–859 B.C.E, Reign of Ashurnasirpal, alabaster, 94 x 90 inches. Collection of Middlebury College Museum of Art. Gift of Dr. Wilson A. Farnsworth, Class of 1848. The restoration of this relief was made possible in part by funds raised in 1989 by the Friends of Art at Middlebury College in celebration of their twentieth anniversary. Additional funds were provided by the Getty Grant Program and American Greetings. 0.114

The Assyrian relief from the Northwest Palace of the Neo-Assyrian king Ashurnasirpal II (883 to 859 BCE) was among the first artworks to enter the Middlebury College art collection. Alumnus and missionary Reverend Wilson A. Farnsworth donated it to his alma mater sometime after 1854, and today it is a centerpiece of the Middlebury College Museum of Art. In the spring of 2020, the students in Professor Sarah Laursen’s “NWxNE: Digital Methodologies for Art Historians” class created a website dedicated to the study of Middlebury’s Assyrian relief. The site represents a continuation of the NWxNE project, which was initiated in 2019 by curators at Bowdoin College and the Metropolitan Museum of Art to investigate the Assyrian reliefs from the Northwest Palace that are now housed in collections in the Northeastern United States.

Dive deep into our Assyrian relief

 

Online Exhibit Archive for Untouched by Time: The Athenian Acropolis from Pericles to Parr

Sanford Robinson Gifford, The Parthenon, May 10, 1869
Sanford Robinson Gifford (American, 1823–1880), The Parthenon, May 10, 1869, oil on canvas, 6 5/8 x 11 5/8 inches. Collection of Middlebury College Museum of Art. Purchased with funds provided by the Christian A. Johnson Memorial Art Acquisition Fund, 2016.102.

Experience Untouched by Time

The building program on the Athenian Acropolis, constructed during the second half of the fifth century BCE under the stewardship of the Athenian statesman Pericles, has come to be the most celebrated architectural expression of the High-Classical era. Originally on view in the spring of 2017, Untouched by Time—which brought together early archaeological publications, paintings, prints, drawings, photographs, reconstruction images, and books all drawn from collections at Middlebury—chronicled the changing perceptions of the Acropolis over the last three centuries and bore testimony to the ever enduring fascination with these monuments.

 

Online Exhibit Archive for Land and Lens: Photographers Envision the Environment

James Balog, Greenland Ice Sheet
James Balog (American, b. 1952), Greenland Ice Sheet, 28 June 2009, Adam LeWinter surveys Birthday Canyon, from the portfolio Ice: Portraits of Vanishing Glaciers, 2009, chromogenic color print on paper, 16 x 24 inches. Collection of Middlebury College Museum of Art. Purchase with funds provided by the Fine Arts Acquisition Fund, 2015.006.

Featuring 71 images spanning the mid-19th century to the present day, the works on view in Land and Len, an exhibition originally on view at Middlebury in the fall of 2017, come primarily from the Museum’s rich holdings of historic and contemporary photography. Among the wide range of artists represented are historic figures Ansel Adams, Arthur Rothstein, Eliot Porter and Alfred Stieglitz, as well as many contemporaries. Among these Jamey Stillings, Richard Misrach, David Maisel, James Balog, and Edward Burtynsky are well known for their concerned image-making.

Experience Land and Lens

 

Event Recordings


Precolonial African Sexuality, Contemporary Homophobia and #LimitlessAfricans

In this illustrated lecture, Fulbright-winning artist Mikael Chukwuma Owunna discusses how Limit(less), his series of photographic portraits of LGBTQ+ Africans in diaspora, uses celebratory imagery to challenge a colonial legacy of homophobia.

Roman Faces in the Museum

In conjunction with our American Faces exhibit in the spring of 2017, Pieter Broucke presented this gallery talk about Roman faces in the Museum as part of our Fridays at the Museum series. Note: the video is a little shaky early on—our operations manager, who’s manning the camera, probably had too much coffee that day—but after a few minutes he finds a tripod and it gets better.

 

The Art of Relaxation


Virtual Jigsaw Puzzles

Do you crave the mindful relaxation of piecing together a jigsaw puzzle? We’ve assembled a few puzzles, based on works in our collection, to give your mind a happy challenge while you enjoy a break from the daily grind.

LOVE in a February Snow

Smog in the Snow

Youbie Obie on a Cold Sunny Morning

Contemplative Looking Videos

These guided looking activities invite you to slow down and “be present” with a work of art for a few minutes.

Walter Greaves, Nocturne: Battersea Reach

Harry Bertoia, Sounding Sculpture

Coloring Pages

Relieve some stress with downloadable coloring sheets inspired by art in the Museum’s collection. Recreate a masterpiece or color outside the lines! Line drawings by Phoebe Mitchell ’17 and Elizabeth Warfel ’19.

Lippo d’Andrea, Madonna and Child

Lippo d’Andrea (Italian, c. 1370/71–1451), Virgin and Child Enthroned with Saints John the Baptist and Nicholas of Bari, c. 1410, tempera and gold on panel, 49 1/8 x 26 3/16 inches.

Download the PDF Coloring Page

Anna Stanchi, Tulips, Irises, Etc., 1643

Anna Stanchi, A Still Life with Tulips, Irises, Daffodils, Carnations, Hyacinths, and Other Flowers, 1643, oil on canvas, 22 3/8 x 18 1/4 inches.

Download the PDF Coloring Page

Sarcophagus of Hathor-Mut-Netcher

Sarcophagus of Hathor-Mut-Netcher, 664-343 B.C.E., painted gesso on wood.

Download the PDF Coloring Page

17th Century Syrian Tile

Anonymous (Syrian), Tile, early 17th century, porcelain, 10 x 10 1/8 x 1 inches.

Download the PDF Coloring Page

Suit of Japanese Ceremonial Armor

Anonymous (Japanese), Suit of Ceremonial Armor, 18th–19th century, Edo period (1615–1868), iron, leather, gilded wood, gilded bronze, silver, hair

Download the PDF Coloring Page

Attic Black-Figure Eye Cup

Attributed to the Group of Walters 48.42 (Attic, Greek), Black-Figure Eye Cup, c. 510 B.C.E., terracotta, 4 1/8 x 14 1/2 x 11 1/2 inches.

Download the PDF Coloring Page