The Center for Ancient Studies will host “The Origins of the Arts: Expressive Culture of Early Homo sapiens,” the annual Ranieri Colloquium on Ancient Studies, on Thurs., April 26 and Fri., April 27.
New York University’s Center for Ancient Studies will host “The Origins of the Arts: Expressive Culture of Early Homo sapiens,” the annual Ranieri Colloquium on Ancient Studies, on Thurs., April 26 and Fri., April 27, in NYU’s Hemmerdinger Hall, Silver Center for Arts and Science, 100 Washington Square East (enter at 32 Waverly Place or 31 Washington Place [wheelchair accessible]).
The event brings together leading scholars on the subject of the origins of art and symbolism who will report on recent cutting-edge field, laboratory, and experimental research that show the arts played a major role in the evolution of human culture.
The focus of such scholarship has traditionally been on the western Eurasian record. However, researchers have now determined that modern people of African origin had dispersed to Southeast Asia and Australia as early as 50,000 years ago. “The Origins of the Arts” will take into account the archaeological records for the arts of those areas—as well as those of the African homeland of our species.
Presentations include “Art and the Early Modern Brain,” “Arts of the Neandertals,” “Personal Ornamentation: The Allure of Mammoth Ivory,” and “Earliest Arts of Australia,” with speakers from the American Museum of Natural History, Italy’s University of Ferrara, France’s Université de Toulouse, and UCLA, among other institutions.
NYU anthropologist Randall White will deliver the conference’s keynote address: “The Expressive Culture of Early Humans: Archaeological Evidence for the Origins of the Arts” (Thurs., April 26, 5:45 p.m.).
For more information, including a complete schedule of sessions, please visit: http://as.nyu.edu/ancientstudies/news.html.
The conference is presented by the NYU Center for Ancient Studies in conjunction with the Center for the Study of Human Origins and is co-sponsored by the Centre Cartailhac, Maison des Sciences de l’Homme et de la Société, Université de Toulouse Jean Jaurès, and by the NYU College of Arts and Science, the Institute of Fine Arts, the Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development, the Tisch School of the Arts, the University Arts Council, and NYU’s Departments of Anthropology and Art History.
NYU’s Center for Ancient Studies was created in 1996 to promote interdisciplinary and cross-cultural study of the past. Directed by Matthew S. Santirocco, and supported largely through endowment, the Center funds travel grants for undergraduate and graduate students, annual research conferences and lectures, and summer outreach seminars for faculty from across the United States (in collaboration with the Faculty Resource Network). Scholarly organizations that are based at the Center include the American section of the Institute for Etruscan and Italic Studies and its journal, Etruscan News, and the Aquila Theatre Company.