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Public Programs

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Connect to the latest thinking about the arts from ancient times to tomorrow’s prospects. Become part of the conversation, keep up with our events calendar and choose from our extensive range of lecture series, special lectures, panel discussions, workshops, and conferences. Enjoy our video archive to catch up with previous events. Many of our lectures are broadcast live.

2017 Calendar

The fall schedule will be posted on the first day of the semester, September 5, 2017.


September 12, 2017, 5:30pm
Series: Works in Progress
Speaker: Carol Krinsky
This event is only open to the Institute's Community

September 14, 2017, 6:00pm
Series: PCSNY
Title: Migration or Imitation? The Anomalous Appearance of Maya-Style Murals at the Central Mexican Site of Cacaxtla
Speaker: Andrew D. Turner, Postdoctoral Associate in the Art of the Ancient Americas, Yale University Art Gallery

Abstract: Since their discovery in the mid 1970s, the Maya-style murals of Cacaxtla, Tlaxcala (AD 600–900) have challenged notions of Mesoamerican cultures as regionally bounded and immobile. Located some 700 kilometers from the nearest Maya site, the murals have been considered by some to be the result of migration or invasion by a poorly understood group from the southern Gulf Coast referred to as the Olmeca-Xicalanca, and by others to be a local attempt to claim ties to distant powers. This presentation considers the Maya-style traits that appear within Cacaxtla’s murals and elsewhere in the site’s monumental art programs and argues that Cacaxtla’s art reflects a deep and sustained engagement with specific Late Classic sites of the Maya Lowlands. Through analysis of style and iconography at Cacaxtla, it is possible to gain a better understanding of the nature of interaction between powerful cities of the Maya region and Central Mexico during the Late Classic period.

Image: Ricardo Alvarado Tapia

September 21, 2017 5:30pm
Series: Works in Progress
Speaker: Pepe Karmel
This event is only open to the Institute's Community

Friday, September 22, 2017, 6:30pm
Series: New York Aegean Bronze Age Colloquium
Speaker: Peter Pavúk, Associate Professor of Classical Archaeology; Director of the   Institute of Classical Archaeology, Charles University, Prague, Czech Republic
Title: Cultural encounters the Center of the East Aegean-West Anatolian Interface in the Late Bronze Age

Monday, September 25, 2017, 6:00pm
Title: José Leonilson: Autobiography of a Brazilian artist
Speakers: Cecilia Brunson, independent curator; Gabriela Rangel, Director and Chief Curator, Visual Arts, Americas Society; Susanna V. Temkin, Assistant Curator, Visual Arts, Americas Society; Yuji Kawasima, PhD. Candidate Universidad Complutense de Madrid; Ana Lenice Dias, President, Projeto Leonilson; and professors Jenni Sorkin, University of California, Santa Barbara; and Edward Sullivan New York University.

Abstract: Americas Society presents an academic symposium at New York University’s Institute of Fine Arts to celebrate the upcoming exhibition José Leonilson: Empty Man and the international launch of the three volume Leonilson catalogue raisonné, recently completed by the artist’s estate, the São Paulo-based Projeto Leonilson.

Image: José Leonilson Bezerra Dias, Empty Man, 1991, Thread on embroidered linen, 20 7/8 x 14 9/16 in (53 x 37 cm). Família Bezerra Dias/Projeto Leonilson. © Projeto Leonilson

Wednesday, September 27, 2017 6:00pm
Series: Medieval Art Forum
Speaker: Martha Easton, The Material Collective
Title:  “The Most Extraordinary Art Museum in the World”: Inventing Medievalism at the Hammond Castle Museum in Gloucester, Massachusetts

Abstract: In the 1920s, the scientist and inventor John Hays Hammond, Jr. built a medieval-style castle high on a bluff overlooking the sea in Gloucester, Massachusetts. His ‘castle’ housed his laboratory, but Hammond also used it as a stage setting for his sizeable collection of ancient, medieval, and Renaissance objects, in a fantastical setting meant to evoke a medieval past. Although Hammond lived, worked, and entertained his many famous friends in the castle, he also operated it as a museum, which one breathless newspaper account of the time deemed “the most extraordinary art museum in the world.” Despite these accolades, today Hammond’s collection and castle are almost completely unknown and unpublished.

Thursday, September 28, 2017 6:30pm
Series: Huber Colloquium  
Speaker: Edward Sullivan, Deputy Director, Helen Gould Sheppard Professor in the History of Art, The Institute of Fine Arts and College of Arts and Sciences, NYU
Introduction by Christine Poggi, Judy and Michael Steinhardt Director, The Institute of Fine Arts, NYU
Title: Between Toledo and Buenos Aires: Radical Modernity and the Mystic Cosmovision of Esteban Lisa (1895-1983)  

Abstract: Esteban Lisa (1895-1983) was both an enigmatic figure as well as a major force within the development of art in Argentina in the mid-20th century. Born in a small town in the province of Toledo, Spain, he left for Buenos Aires at age 12. Like many other émigré artists to the Americas (Esteban Vicente, Maruja Mallo, the cinéaste Luis Buñuel or the musician Pau Casals) he formed a bridge between the artistic worlds of the New and the Old Worlds. Lisa developed a particular brand of abstraction that became widely acclaimed only after his death. (He refused to exhibit in his lifetime and, like his illustrious Buenos Aires contemporary Jorge Luis Borges, worked as a civil servant for many years). Lisa is the subject of a current exhibition at the art museum of Boston College. This lecture will place the artist within the context of his time in both Argentina and Iberia and will attempt to analyze the rise of interest in his work on both sides of the Atlantic beginning in the 1990s. Image: Fondation Audi, "Esteban Lisa: in the land of the Cedars" 2010, p. 66; PJT



Monday, October 2, 2017, 6:00pm
Digging Deeper: Conservation In the Field

The Institute of Fine Arts invites you to an evening of project presentations by current Conservation Center students from their summer experiences at IFA-sponsored and co-sponsored archaeological excavations.
Presentations will include:

Chantal Stein, Sardis Excavations in Turkey
Andrew Wolf, Samothrace Excavations

A question and answer session will follow the last presentation, and please join us for a light reception in the Loeb Room at the conclusion of the evening's program.

Tuesday, October 3, 2017, 6:30pm
Series: Silberberg Lecture Series
Speaker: Andres Zervigón, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey
Title: Photography and Truth in the Radicalized Public Sphere

Abstract: In 1927, the radical-left magazine Die Arbeiter-Illustrierte Zeitung (or AIZ) published a two-page spread with the declarative titled “Die AIZ sagt die Wahrheit!” [The AIZ Tells the Truth!]. At issue was its cover photo from a few weeks earlier showing right-wing militiamen scandalously posing on the country estate of German Interior Minister Walter von Keudell, the first “völkisch” member of a Weimar-era cabinet. The picture had ignited furious public debate before enveloping the minister himself, who was forced to protest his innocence from the well of the Reichstag. As von Keudell declared, the picture was nothing more than a cut-and-paste falsification. In the subsequent two-page spread, the AIZ now confessed that its cover had indeed been a “Bildkombination,” but that the image nonetheless told the truth about the government’s codling of proto-fascists. Using this case of a highly public debate about photography’s veracity, my paper proposes that Weimar-era Germany’s politically polarized public sphere was significantly fomented by the camera. The experience of political combat was now being driven by a contest of photographic images. But as the paper also suggests, the rhetoric of truth propelling this encounter, particularly in the face of an open “Bildkombination,” shows that photography now functioned at an affective register that reinscribed the medium as a passionate rather than mechanically objective form of witness. This phenomenon resembles today’s photographic conditions in the era of “alternative facts.”

Andrés Mario Zervigón is Associate Professor of the History of Photography at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey. He is author of John Heartfield and the Agitated Image: Photography, Persuasion, and the Rise of Avant-Garde Photomontage (University of Chicago Press, 2012), and Photography and Germany (Reaktion Book, 2017). In addition, Zervigón coedited three anthologies: Photography and Its Origins with Tanya Sheehan(Routledge, 2014), Photography and Doubt with Sabine Kriebel(Routledge, 2016), and Subjective/Objective: A Century of Social Photography with Donna Gustafson (Zimmerli/Hirmer, 2017). For his current book project, titled Die Arbeiter-Illustrierte Zeitung -- The Worker's Illustrated Magazine, 1921-1938: A History of Germany's Other Avant-Garde, he received the Paul Mellon Senior Fellowship at the Center for Advanced Study in the Visual Arts (CASVA, 2013-14). His articles and reviews have appeared in New German Critique, Visual Resources, History of Photography, Rundbrief Fotografie, Photo/Researcher, Études Photographiques, October, Art Journal, and CAAReviews. Zervigón leads The Developing Room, an academic working group at Rutgers that promotes interdisciplinary dialogue on photography’s history, theory and practice. Its last event was the two-day symposium Reinventing Documentary Photography in the 1970s, co-convened by Sarah Miller and Drew Sawyer.

Friday, October 6, 2017, 6:30pm
Series: China Project Workshop
Speaker: Nancy Steinhardt

Monday, October 9, 2017, 6:30pm
Series: Latin American Forum
Speaker: Cecilia Vicuña
Title: A Conversation with Cecilia Vicuña


Abstract: Artist, poet, activist and philosopher, Cecilia Vicuña (born in Chile, a long-time resident of New York) has been noted for many decades for her work in a wide variety of media and venues. Her political activism, her artistic innovation and her stimulating and original approach to problems of visuality and the expression of collective emotion are at the heart of her art.

We are immensely pleased to have Cecilia as the first Artist in this Fall's series of Latin American Forum events. She will discuss her work in the context of a conversation with Edward J. Sullivan, Professor of Latin American and Caribbean Art History and Deputy Director of the Institute of Fine Arts
Image Courtesy of the Artist.

Tuesday, October 10, 2017, 12:30pm
Series: Works in Progress
Speaker: Meredith Martin
This event is only open to the Institute's Community

Monday, October 16, 2017, 5:30pm
Series: Works in Progress
Speaker: Andrew Ward
This event is only open to the Institute's Community

Tuesday, October 24, 2017, 6:30pm
Series: Artists at the Institute
Artist: Anicka Yi


Abstract: Anicka Yi lives and works in New York City. Recent institutional solo exhibitions of her work include the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York; Fridericianum, Kassel; Kunsthalle Basel; List Visual Arts Center, Cambridge, Massachusetts; The Kitchen, New York; and The Cleveland Museum of Art. In October 2016, she was awarded the Hugo Boss Prize and presented a solo exhibition at Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, from April to July 2017. Yi has screened her film, The Flavor Genome, at the International Film Festival of Rotterdam in 2017. She is represented by 47 Canal, New York.


Please check back for the schedule of events in November, or join our mailing list.


Please check back for the schedule of events in December, or join our mailing list.

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