In the mid-nineteenth century, Americans faced a new way to encounter art: the traveling exhibition. Sculptures, panoramas, and paintings crisscrossed the country, appearing at venues that included exhibition and entertainment halls, galleries, reform societies, and fairs. During this virtual webinar, Caitlin Meehye Beach will explore the phenomenon of traveling exhibitions as they intersected a pressing concern of the day: the abolition of slavery. Following the publication of her 2022 book, Sculpture at the Ends of Slavery, this presentation focuses on three works in particular: Hiram Powers’ The Greek Slave, Henry “Box” Brown’s The Mirror of Slavery, and Frederic Edwin Church’s The Icebergs. Tune in to consider the mobilization of images to abolish slavery, and the regimes of race, sentiment, and spectacle that would be confronted in so doing.
Caitlin Meehye Beach,Ph.D, is an Assistant Professor of Art History and Affiliated Faculty in African & African American Studies at Fordham University. Her teaching and research focus on transatlantic art histories of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, with special attention to the enduring effects of colonialism, slavery, migration, and racial capitalism. Published by University of California Press, Sculpture at the Ends of Slavery is her first book and a recipient of The Phillips Collection Book Prize.
Artmaking in the Afternoon – FREE Drop-In Program
Inspired by your time at Olana or looking for family-friendly fun during mid-winter break? Join Olana educators for free, drop-in art activities at the Wagon House Education Center Friday and Saturday afternoon. Learn more about Frederic Church’s 250 acres of designed landscape through drawing, painting, and collage! Open to all ages and skill levels; all materials provided. FREE.
Chasing the Winter Landscape - FREE Weekend Walks at Olana
Channel 19th century artist Frederic Church’s taste for exploration during these special winter landscape walks! Travel through Olana’s beautiful winter landscape during free landscape tours led by education staff. Learn more about how Church and his family spent their winters in the Hudson Valley as you take in Olana’s exquisite seasonal views. Hear more about Olana’s special winter exhibition, Chasing Icebergs, as you explore different parts of Olana’s 250-acres.
Tours begin at the Wagon House Education Center at the historic farm complex and cover about 1 mile; please wear weather-appropriate apparel and comfortable footwear.
FREE. Limited capacity, advance registration required. For more information, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call (518) 751-6938.
The Olana Partnership, in collaboration with Basilica Hudson, Hudson Hall, Partners for Climate Action and Upstate Films, presents a special screening of Meltdown (dir. Fredric Golding, 2021, 60 mins); a timely documentary that merges art and science in addressing climate change. This screening will be followed by a conversation with the trailblazing Hudson-based photographer Lynn Davis to coincide with Olana’s exhibition Chasing Icebergs, featuring her spectacular iceberg photos taken in Greenland. During the film, Davis is joined by Yale scientist Tony Leiserowitz, as they explore the beauty and tragedy present in our contemporary global crises.
Lynn Davis’s work is currently featured in Chasing Icebergs: Art and a Disappearing Landscape at Olana State Historic Site, which traces the 19th century artist Frederic Church’s quest to paint icebergs off the coast of Newfoundland and Labrador. Much like Church, Davis has been inspired by the sublime beauty of the arctic and icebergs, traveling north to capture large-format images of the arctic landscape. Since 1986, Davis has focused her lens on icebergs in the Arctic.
Indigenous people did not just disappear with westward expansion. Native groups remained strong and vibrant communities who continue to fight for sovereignty and justice. Learn about contemporary issues in Indian Country today including the #MMIW (Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women) epidemic, the fight to protect our Earth, and the continued fight for sovereignty.
Heather Bruegl is a citizen of the Oneida Nation of Wisconsin and first-line descendent Stockbridge Munsee. She is a graduate of Madonna University in Michigan and holds a Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts in U.S. History. Heather consults for a variety of museums and universities and is a frequent lecturer at conferences on topics ranging from intergenerational racism and trauma to the fight for clean water in the Native community. Heather is a public historian, activist, and independent consultant who works with institutions and organizations for Indigenous sovereignty and collective liberation.
$15 person, $10 for members. Advanced registration required. Scholarships and discounted registration available upon request. Please contact email@example.com to learn more.
The Olana Partnership programs are made possible by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of the Governor and the New York State Legislature.