Symposium: Fine Arts

Join top curators for an in-depth look at the exhibits in NHA galleries.

Let’s Give Them Something to Talk About, with Dan Elias, NHA Robyn and John Davis Chief Curator.  Dan will explore how human beings store meaning in objects, how they use objects to communicate what’s important, and what makes a collection out of a heap of stuff.

Two Hundred Years of American Art on Nantucket: Paintings from the NHA and Private Collections in the new Williams-Forsyth Gallery, with Anne Classen Knutson, Ph.D., guest curator of the new exhibition.  Anne Knutson will share her behind-the-scenes curatorial journey of discovering art in private collections on island and pairing them with NHA works. Through this process, she found surprising connections between the pieces, and lots of new stories about American art on Nantucket over the last 200 years.

Modern American Realism: Highlights from the Sara Roby Foundation Collection. Virginia Mecklenburg, Chief Curator, Smithsonian American Art Museum, discusses the origins of modern American realism and the Sara Roby Foundation Collection. Sara Roby, heiress and painter, was a long-time Nantucket summer resident who lived on island full time towards the end of her life. Concerned that figu­rative art was being eclipsed by expressionism, Roby established a foundation in the 1950s to collect art that reflected the classic principles of form and design she had learned as an art student. Her collection was given to the Smithsonian American Art Museum in 1986. Selected works, curated by Mecklenburg, are on view in the McCausland Gallery, May 24 – October 14, 2019.

The Nantucket Historical Association preserves and interprets the history of Nantucket through its programs, collections, and properties, in order to promote the island’s significance and foster an appreciation of it among all audiences.

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