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About the Exhibition

Colors of Classical Art, curated by Juliet Graver Istrabadi, Acting Curator of Ancient Art and Julie Van Voorhis, Associate Professor of the History of Art, is the result of a close collaboration between the Indiana University Art Museum and the Department of the History of Art. The exhibition showcases artworks from the museum’s permanent collection from the perspective of color, an aspect of ancient art that is often under-represented in art historical literature. The accompanying website was developed both to enhance the experience of the visitor to the exhibition and to provide access to the exhibition for those unable to attend in person; it also is intended to stand alone as a resource on the techniques, artistic uses, and cultural significance of color in ancient art after the exhibition closes.

Colors of Classical Art was made possible by a dedicated group of curators, designers, editors, and other museum professionals, as well as by graduate and undergraduate students. Two courses were taught in conjunction with the planning of the exhibition. A graduate seminar in Fall 2013 provided M.A. and Ph.D. students in the departments of the History of Art and Classical Studies with the opportunity to conduct original research and to participate in the development of the exhibition and its accompanying website from its earliest stages. The insights of these students, presented both in their formal research papers and in class discussion, provided the groundwork for intellectual conception of the project. In Spring 2014 a joint-listed course in the Departments of the History of Art, Classical Studies, and the Hutton Honors College gave undergraduate students the unique opportunity to develop the self-guided tour of the permanent collection. These students selected the objects to be included in the tour, carried out research on individual objects, and wrote interpretive labels, which served as the basis for the material you read here. All of the objects researched by these students are included on the website.

The curators are grateful to the entire museum staff for their support, expertise, and hard work; they especially want to thank: Eric Beckman, Research Assistant; Margaret Contompasis, Conservator; Dennis Deckard, Gallery Tech; Brian Garvey, Graphic Designer; Madeline Grdina, Editor; Jeanne Leimkuhler, Preparator; Ellen Lyon, Conservation Assistant; Kevin Montague, Photographer; Illya Moskvin, Website Designer; and Max Shaw, Gallery Tech.

Students from the Colors of Classical Art graduate seminar: Eric Beckman, Charlotte Forstall, Aleda Krill, Anne Mahady, Ruth Melin, Angela Ratigan, Natalie Robinson, Kristie Ryel, Jonathan Salvati, and Rachel Schend.

Students from the Colors of Classical Art undergraduate class: Isaac Ackerman, Andrea Benzschawel, Jacob Cohen, Michael Davenport, Perry Scout Demir, Adam Grossman, Sarah Hemaida, Holly Johnson, Matthew Kaczmarek, Kristina Mihajlovic, Illya Moskvin, Vianna Newman, Christian Richardson, Benjamin Robinson, Nicole Stonier, and Elizabeth Szymanski.

Support for the exhibition was provided by the Thomas T. Solley Endowment for the Curator of Ancient Art, the IU Art Museum Arc fund, and the Office of the Vice Provost of Research at Indiana University Bloomington through the Collaborative Research and Creative Activity Funding Award.