Next AIA Lecture features Virginia's Tyler Jo Smith on Feb. 22

Next AIA Lecture features Virginia's Tyler Jo Smith on Feb. 22

calendar icon29 Jan 2016    

Portrait of Sir William Hamilton by David Allen, 1775.
Portrait of Sir William Hamilton by David Allen, 1775.
Lincoln, Neb.—The Lincoln-Omaha Society of the Archaeological Institute of America presents a lecture by Tyler Jo Smith of the University of Virginia and one of the foremost experts in America on Greek vase painting, on Monday, Feb. 22 at 7:30 p.m. in Rm. 102 of Bessey Hall on the University of Nebraska–Lincoln’s city campus. The lecture is free and open to the public.

Her lecture is titled “From Hamilton to Hercules:  Greek Vases in Popular Culture” and will discuss modern perception of ancient Greek vases.

Despite the growing interest in the history of collecting, relatively little has been written about the visual reception of ancient Greek vases. The colorful vases produced in Athens and elsewhere in Classical times have featured regularly in modern visual representations. From the 18th century to the present day, vases have made their way into paintings, prints and crockery, as well as films, jewelry and clothing. The famous late 18th century British diplomat and antiquarian Sir William Hamilton, can be seen in portraiture posed alongside the vases in his collection; yet Disney’s 1997 film Hercules features the same kinds of objects (both intact and broken) as indicators of a ‘real’ ancient setting.

How have perceptions of Greek vases evolved or changed over time? This lecture traces the development of Greek vases in contemporary settings with particular attention to the social and artistic contexts in which they have been used. In modern times we may observe vase reproductions (both accurate and fanciful) lining the shelves of souvenir shops in Greece or for sale in American and European collections. T-shirts, mugs, Swatch watches, and advertisements—both in the modern Greek context and elsewhere—never seem to tire of vases and their abundant mythological images.
Smith is Associate Professor of Classical Art and Archaeology at the University of Virginia.  She holds her degrees from Oxford University (D.Phil.) and Davidson College, and her areas of specialization are Greek vase painting and iconography, the art and archaeology of performance, the art and archaeology of religion, and Anatolian archaeology.  Her current publication projects are The Art of Greek Religion (University of Pennsylvania Press), Greek Vases: Art, Society, and Meaning (Cambridge University Press), and Sir John Sloane’s Greek Vases (Archaeopress).   
Smith’s lecture is sponsored by the University of Nebraska–Lincoln, the UNL Department of Art and Art History and the Lincoln-Omaha Society of the Archaeological Institute of America. The Archaeological Institute of America is North America’s oldest and largest archaeological organization.

Bessey Hall is located at 1215 U St., just east of Memorial Stadium on the UNL city campus.
Upcoming AIA Lincoln-Omaha Society lectures:
Feb. 29 at 7:30 p.m.                        
“Marble Parades: Celebrating Materiality in Augustan Rome”
Diane Favro, University of California Los Angeles
Room 117, Bessey Hall, UNL Campus, Lincoln
Apr. 10 at 2 p.m.                       
“What did the Greeks and Romans ever do for us? Putting classical civilization in perspective”
Ian Morris, Stanford University
Witherspoon Concert Hall, Joslyn Art Museum, 2201 Dodge St. in Omaha