News & Upcoming Events

Join us on Saturday, May 1 for an international panel discussion, [De]Mapping the Future: Listening to the Historic Origin Body.

deMapping the Future banner image, title text over exhibition view showing artwork drawn on and cut into gallery walls

“Stories of origin cannot exist without a language to tell them in, without a tongue to carry the words”

(Magdalena Moskolewich, In the Words, In the Bones, 2019)


Saturday, May 1, 2021
online webinar event


The panel brings focus to the art reflecting on three often separately considered regions: Central Asia, Eastern Europe and the Caribbean as a way to connect the global concerns with the personal. At the crossroads of diverging languages due to distances beyond geographical and time measures, current decolonial efforts point towards exciting trajectories, on the path from delinking structural national narratives to speculative fiction.


Four historians in dialogue at this intersection:


The speakers will reflect on the works in the exhibition In the Words, In the Bones that took place at Mills Gallery at Boston Center for the Arts, May 23–July 21, 2019 curated by Magdalena Moskalewicz. Artists in the exhibition were Marina Leybishkis with “roots” in Central Asia (Uzbekistan), Zsuzsanna Szegedi-Varga in Eastern Europe (Hungary) and Nyugen Smith in the Caribbean (Haiti and Trinidad and Tobago) as they uncover their family histories, examine the contentious heritage of the colonial era and postcommunist ruptures and absences, as they reclaim, revive, and recalibrate narratives. 

The panel is hosted by the Wellesley College Art Department and pays honor to the legacy of artist and scholar Alice Van Vechten Brown at Wellesley. Between 1897 and 1911 Brown initiated the first art history program in the United States at Wellesley College and also a laboratory system for art historical studies, the Wellesley Method. As we globally experience the effects of pivotal shifts from an East-West to North-South mentalities, conversations that connect artists and arts historians are increasingly vital.


For more information about the event, the exhibition being discussed, and the speakers, please see the event website.


This event is free and open to the public, but advance registration is required.
Contact Zsuzsanna Szegedi,, with questions about the event.



The 2021 Dr. Ruth E. Morris Bakwin Class of 1919 Art Lecture

Sandra Jackson-Dumont

Director and Chief Executive Officer
Lucas Museum of Narrative Art

Monday, May 3, 2021
4:00 pm - 5:30 pm
Register for the lecture via Zoom

Curator, author, educator, administrator, and public advocate for reimagining the role of art museums in society, Sandra Jackson-Dumont has served since January 2020 as Director and Chief Executive Officer of the new Lucas Museum of Narrative Art. She oversees all curatorial, educational, public, and operational affairs for the fast-developing institution, including realization of a 300,000-square-foot building, currently under construction in Los Angeles’s Exposition Park, integrated with a new 11-acre park. Prior to taking leadership of the Lucas Museum, she held the post of Frederick P. and Sandra P. Rose Chairman of Education at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, where from 2014 through 2019 she conceived and produced institution-wide programs that served audiences from schoolchildren and teachers to artists and scholars.

Jackson-Dumont began her career at the Whitney Museum of American Art as head of School, Family, and Intergenerational Programs (1997-2000), then joined The Studio Museum in Harlem as Director of Education and Public Programs. In 2006, she became Deputy Director for Education and Public Programs and Adjunct Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art at the Seattle Art Museum, working across the museum’s three venues while organizing exhibitions and collaborative projects of the work of artists including Theaster Gates, Titus Kaphar, LaToya Ruby Frazier, and Sondra Perry.

A native of San Francisco, Jackson-Dumont earned her B.A. in art history from Sonoma State University and received her M.A. in art history from Howard University. While pursuing her career in museums, she has also taught at the Rhode Island School of Design, New York University, and the University of Washington.

The 2020-21 Wellesley Deerfield Symposium

Wellesley College students marching in a 1915 suffrage parade. Credit: Wellesley College Archives

From Suffrage to Stonewall: The Visual and Material Culture of Social Justice

The 2020-21 Wellesley-Deerfield Symposium

This symposium will examine the visual and material culture of social justice movements in the United States.  Illustrated scholarly presentations will explore artistic expressions deployed to foster social, political, economic, and cultural change.

The years 2019 and 2020 mark significant anniversaries in the history of social justice movements in the United States, commemorating the many reform campaigns that have taken place from the 19th century to the present, including abolition/antislavery, women's rights, and the civil rights movements for the African-American, LGBTQ, Native American, and disability communities.  These campaigns sought political, social, economic, and cultural change, and they all deployed visual and material culture to advance their goals.  The 2020 Wellesley-Deerfield Symposium will focus on research related to the wide range of artistic expression generated by social justice movements, from painting, sculpture, public performance, and installation to ephemera, costume, and craft.

Friday, April 23, 2021 and Saturday, April 24, 2021
Register for Zoom Webinar here

Rescheduled from Spring 2020. Please re-register for the 2021 webinar. 

Generously supported by the Barra Foundation.


The Alice C. Cole '42 2020-21 Fellow Talk: Eleanor Conover


poster for artist talk with abstract blue, pink, brown, and cream painting on the left; right side is pink with an overlay of the Cole fellowship logo
Join the Studio Art Program for a talk by the 2020-21 Alice C. Cole ’42 fellow, artist Eleanor Conover. Conover’s work engages with painting and drawing as metaphors for the environment and archaeology.
Tuesday, March 16
5:30 pm EDT
Tennessee-based artist Eleanor Conover teaches painting and drawing at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. Conover has a BA from Harvard College and an MFA from Tyler School of Art at Temple University. Her work engages with the physical and material conditions of painting and drawing as metaphors for environmental time and space, implying locations and states of excavation and accumulation.
The Alice C. Cole ’42 Fellowship is awarded to an outstanding early-career painter or sculptor, providing funds to support one year of unimpeded time and space to experiment, develop a body of work, and focus on future artistic goals. Cole Fellowships are based on nominations from prominent members of the national arts community. The fellowship is made possible by the generous bequest of Alice C. Cole ’42. Aware of the burdens that face recent graduates of art school, Ms. Cole makes it possible for an artist to have “a limited time free of economic necessity”—an immensely valuable gift.
This talk is free and open to the public, but advance registration is required using the link above.
March 5, 2021



Professor Nikki A. Greene to join panel on Performativity and the Social Body 

Episode 5: Wednesday, October 21, 11:00 AM EST

NIKKI GREENE part of Vanderbilt University's Engine for Art, Democracy and Justice panel
Performativity and the Social Body
Along with Cecila Vicuña, Doris Sommer, and Shamell Bell. 


Professor Alice Friedman named Fellow of the Society of Architectural Historians

Alice Friedman

Congratulations to Professor Alice Friedman, Grace Slack McNeil Professor of American Art.  The Board of the Society of Architectural Historians named her a Fellow as part of the Class of 2020. From SAH: "The Board of Directors names as Fellows of the Society of Architectural Historians individuals who have distinguished themselves by a lifetime of significant contributions to the field. These contributions may include scholarship, service to the Society, teaching and stewardship of the built environment.

Professor Friemdan's citation was written by Kathryn O'Rourke '02, Associate Professor of Art & Art History at Trinity University:


“Hard questions mean incomplete answers and lots of research and thinking by groups of people working together, but there are often awkward silences, and sometimes even a price to be paid, professionally and personally, before better answers can be found.” Alice Friedman spoke these words in her SAH plenary address 10 years ago. Although she was talking about our discipline, her words illuminated her own extraordinary contributions to it.


For four decades Alice has shown us how to ask not only hard questions, but better questions—especially about how gender and sexuality have shaped the history of architecture, and about who has been left out of it. Combining meticulous archival research, broad readings in cultural history, and painstaking formal analysis, in numerous essays, and in three field-changing books, Alice asked questions about architects, and about clients and societies. Whether in analyses of Renaissance houses, glass houses, or houses of worship, she taught us to see architectural history as a consequence of decisions made by a larger and more diverse set of protagonists than we had ever imagined, and in the process revolutionized our understanding of canonical buildings.


For 40 years Alice has taught at Wellesley College, in the Department of Art and the Women’s Studies program, and she has held two chairs. Early in her career she founded Wellesley’s Architecture Program, which she long co-directed. In prestigious visiting professorships, numerous research groups, and in fellowships at institutions including Harvard and the American Academy in Rome, Alice has shared widely her legendary generosity as a mentor and interlocutor.


As a director of the SAH, Alice served our Society well, but as a pioneer in bringing feminism to architectural history, her even greater service lies in having helped transform our discipline, and thereby helping make the Society we know today—the SAH Affiliated Groups, and the SAH that is increasingly willing to ask difficult questions about whom and how it serves.


Relatively few people have the privilege of studying with Alice. But for those of us who do, the experience is life-changing. Through the Architecture Program at Wellesley, she has made the questions of architectural history central to the training of future architects, and helped ensure that the architectural history of the future includes more women.


Please join me in congratulating Alice Friedman as she is inducted as a Fellow of the Society of Architectural Historians.




Congratulations to Professor Friedman on this well earned honor. We're fortunate to have you in our department ushering the next generation of Architectural Historians.





Upcoming events this week: Halverson Lecture and Frank Williams Visiting Artist

text-based poster for Black Spaces Matter lecture
Join the Art Department on November 5 for the 2019 Harry Halverson Lecture on American Architecture, this year featuring architect and architectural historian Pamela Karimi. Karimi's talk, Black Spaces Matter: Learning from an Abolitionist Neighborhood, will center on her work with the architectural history of New Bedford, MA to look further into its role in the history of abolition and post-industrial renewal.
Tuesday, Nov. 5, 2019
5:00 pm
JAC 450
A brief reception in the Jewett Sculpture Court will follow the event. This talk is free and open to the public.
poster for Marco Maggi talk, empty-looking white box gallery space with text overlay
Wellesley Art events this week continue on Friday with the Fall 2019 Frank Williams Visiting Artist: Marco Maggi. New York and Uruguay-based artist Marco Maggi uses a range of unexpected, everyday items to create drawings, sculptures, and interventions in space. Through humor and metaphor, his works refer to dense histories and coded forms of information without resorting to direct reference. Meticulously crafted, Maggi's artwork rewards slow and close examination by the viewer, something he considers an integral part of his practice. He has exhibited extensively in the US and internationally, in galleries and museums. He represented Uruguay in the 2015 Venice Bienniale.
Friday Nov. 8, 2019
12:45 pm
Collins Cinema

A reception in the Davis Museum lobby will follow. This talk is free and open to the public.


posted on Nov. 4, 2019



poster for Race-ing the Romans lecture featuring photo of Shelley Haley standing outside
Join us for "Race-ing" the Romans: Uncovering the Racial Constructs of Ancient Rome, a talk by Shelley Haley, PhD, the Edward North Chair of Classics and Professor of Africana Studies at Hamilton College, NY. Hosted by the Art Department, this event is co-sponsored by the Africana Studies, Classical Studies, and Sociology departments, as well as the CLCE program.
The talk will be at 5:00 pm on Monday, October 21 in Collins Cinema, with a reception to follow. This event is free and open to the public.
posted October 16, 2019


Professor Rebecca Bedell's new book highlighted

Rebecca Bedell standing in front of gilt-framed landscape paintings
Professor Rebecca Bedell. Photo by Samara Pearlstein.
Professor Rebecca Bedell's new book, Moved to Tears: Rethinking the Art of the Sentimental in the United States, was highlighted in a recent Washington Post article. Art critic Sebastian Smee writes about Winslow Homer and the two Massachusetts exhibitions of his work up now. Smee agrees that Homer's work operates in the realm of the sentimental, and that this, far from being a weakness in the art, is actually a strength to be admired and respected.
Prof. Bedell's book may be purchased here, or from any number of other vendors.
Sept. 12, 2019



Fall 2019 Art Dept. Events


collage of images: woman in profile made up of black ink marks; painting of two hands with black background; head shot of Nikki Greene; empty gallery space; photo of St. Peter's Basilica dome; photo of gallery exhibition
Fall event images clockwise from top left: Facts are Stubborn Things, monotype and screenprint by Rozanne Hermelyn Di Silvestro (Print Biennial); painting by Professor Daniela Rivera (Fitchburgh Art Museum and Rappaport Prize); Professor Nikki Greene (Newhouse lecture); exhibition view of Black Spaces Matter at Boston Architetural College (Halverson Lecture); St. Peter's Basilica (Bakwin Lecture); Global Myopia at the Venice Biennial by Marco Maggi (Frank Williams Visiting Artist)


August 26 - September 29
The 2019 Boston Printmakers North American Print Biennial
Jewett Art Gallery and Jewett Hallway Galleries
This biennial exhibition, run by the Boston Printmakers and hosted in 2019 by the Wellesley College Art Department, showcases artwork featuring a wide variety of print processes and techniques from over 100 artists in the US, Canada, and Cuba. This year's show was juried by Shelley Langdale, the Curator and Head of Modern Prints and Drawings at the National Gallery in Washington, D.C. For more information on the exhibiton, see the Boston Printmakers page here.
Juror's Talk: Sunday, Sept. 8, 1:00 pm
Jewett Auditorium
Opening Reception: Sunday Sept. 8, 2:00 - 5:00 pm
Jewett Gallery
Juror's Gallery Talk: Monday, Sept. 9, 12:40 pm
Jewett Gallery
September 21 - January 12, 2020
Daniela Rivera: Labored Landscapes (where hand meets ground)
opening reception 3:00-5:00 pm, Fitchburg Art Museum
This solo exhibition of new work by Studio Art professor Daniela Rivera features three distinct installations. Among the works on view are a number of paintings that explore the hands and bodies of miners, rendered at a scale that makes their relationship to monumental earthworks explicit. For more information on the exhibition, see the Fitchburg Art Museum page here.
Opening Reception: Saturday Sept. 21, 3:00 - 5:00 pm
Monday, September 23
Newhouse Center Faculty Series - Nikki Greene
4:30-6:00 pm, Newhouse Center
Art History professor Nikki Greene presents her ongoing research project, "Sugar makes me cry": María Magdalena Campos-Pons and the Performance of Bittersweet Histories. Campos-Pons, a Cuban-born, Massachusetts-based contemporary artist, uses performance, video, sculpture, installation, photography, and collaborative sound works to reflect on histories of slavery, radical embodiment, and endurance. For more information, see the Newhouse Center page here.
Wednesday, October 23
Rappaport Prize Lecture - Daniela Rivera
6:30 pm, deCordova Sculpture Park & Museum
Professor Daniela Rivera is the recipient of this year's Rappaport Prize, a prestigious award given to an accomplished contemporary New England artist. She will present the Rappaport Prize Lecture on October 23. For more information, see the deCordova's page here.
Monday, October 28
Bakwin Lecture - William E. Wallace
5:30-7:30 pm, Jewett Auditorium
This year's Dr. Ruth Morris Bakwin Class of 1919 lecture will be given by William E. Wallace, the Barbara Murphy Bryant Distinguished Professor of Art History at Washington University and an internationally renowned scholar of the Italian Renaissance artist Michelangelo Buonarroti. For more information, see the event page here.
Tuesday, November 5
Halverson Lecture - Pamela Karimi
5:00 pm, JAC 450
Architect and architectural historian Pamela Karimi will present "Black Spaces Matter: Learning from an Abolitionist Neighborhood," a talk examining issues in the built spaces of New Bedford, MA, as the 2019 Harry Halverson Lecture on American Architecture. For more information, see the event page here.
Friday, November 8
Frank Williams Visiting Artist - Marco Maggi
12:40 pm, Collins Cinema
The Fall 2019 Frank Williams Visiting Artist, Marco Maggi, will present an artist talk on his art and practice. Maggi is a contemporary artist based in New York City and Uruguay. His work makes use of prosaic, everyday objects to invite slow contemplation and create a form of sly humor. For more information, see the event page here.


September 3, 2019



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Jewett Art Gallery
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Jewett Art Gallery, Sculpture Court, Hallway Galleries, PNW
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Chris Nau
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Jewett Art Gallery
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N. Sean Glover
Jewett Art Gallery
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Justin Favela
Jewett Art Gallery
November 17 - December 10, 2017
Randall Armor, Wendy Cadge, Alice Friedman
Jewett Sculpture Court
November 6 - December 1, 2017
Meghan Grubb '05, Zsofia Schweger '12
Jewett Art Gallery
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Alice C. Cole '42 Studio Project Grant Exhibition 2016-17
Alia Ali '09, Courtney Richter '09, Margo Sulmont '13
Jewett Art Gallery
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Jewett Art Gallery
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Jewett Art Gallery
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Jewett Sculpture Court
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Laconia Gallery, Boston
Feb. 5 - March 20, 2016
Jewett Art Gallery
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Jewett Art Gallery
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