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Art history professor selected for CIC seminar at Yale Center for British Art

Lesley Shipley

Lesley Shipley

Lesley Shipley, an art history professor at Randolph, is one of just 25 full-time college professors from across the nation selected to participate in the Council of Independent Colleges’ (CIC) 2017 seminar on Landscape and Identity in Britain and the United States (1770-1914). The program will be held at the Yale Center for British arts this July.

“I’m very excited to be included because this will strengthen my understanding of early landscape painting in the U.S. and Great Britain, and thus have a positive impact on my students’ learning,” Shipley said. “The Maier Museum of Art at Randolph College has a wonderful collection of landscapes, especially 19th-century American landscape, so I hope to plan a course around the role of landscape painting in the construction of identity in the U.S.”

According to the CIC website, the week-long program allows participants to explore with the workshop facilitators a range of texts—by artists, writers, philosophers, and scientists from the period—to examine the cultural, historical, and aesthetic construction of landscape paintings in the 19th century. Each day, participants will spend significant time with major works of art in the unrivalled collections of British landscape paintings, drawings, and prints at the Yale Center for British Art. Tim Barringer, the Paul Mellon Professor the History of Art at Yale University and chair of the department, will lead the seminar.

In addition to her participation in the seminar, Shipley is currently curating the Maier exhibit, Investigating Identity: Race, Gender, and Sexuality in Contemporary Art and Prints from the Permanent Collection. She looks forward to conducting further research on identity in art both at the seminar and during trips to museums and historic sites in and around the New Haven, Connecticut area.

“We will be looking at the role of indigenous people in British Empire landscapes and in American painting, which is what I am particularly interested in exploring,” Shipley said. “My own research focuses on issues of identity and contemporary art, so I’m looking forward to addressing the theme of identity in an area outside of my expertise. I hope to gain some insight into how art historians have come to understand the role of landscape painting in the construction of ‘American’ identity.”


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