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The Art of Reading an Ancient Greek Vase

June 6, 2020
11 am (CT)

Join faculty from Washington University's Department of Classics in Arts & Sciences for an online conversation on key works from the Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum’s collection of ancient Greek vases. The discussion will delve into how to make meaning of the featured iconography, forms, and style of these historical objects.

“Reading” such vessels as the Nolan amphora by the Hermonax Painter and a Siana cup by the C Painter allows their rich content to come to life. By the end of the hour, we hope you will be inspired to enter into your own exploration of classical vase collections—at the Kemper Art Museum and beyond—with an eye attuned to myth, history, and beauty.

Panelists Timothy J. Moore, John and Penelope Biggs Distinguished Professor of Classics, and Susan Rotroff, Jarvis Thurston and Mona Van Duyn Professor Emerita, will be joined by moderator Grizelda (Zellie) McClelland, assistant dean in the College of Arts & Sciences and lecturer in the Department of Classics.

This event is free, but registration is required.

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About the participants

Timothy J. Moore is John and Penelope Biggs Distinguished Professor of Classics at Washington University in St. Louis. He earned his BA from Millersville University and his PhD from the University of North Carolina, and he has taught at Harvard, Texas A&M University, the University of Texas at Austin, the University of Colorado Boulder, and the Ruhr-Universität in Bochum, Germany. His publications include Artistry and Ideology: Livy’s Vocabulary of Virtue, The Theater of Plautus, Music in Roman Comedy, Roman Theatre, two edited volumes on Greek and Roman comedy, and an online database of the meters of Roman comedy. He has received fellowships and grants from the American Academy in Rome, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, the Mellon Foundation, the Loeb Classical Library Foundation, the Center for the Humanities at Washington University in St. Louis, and the Center for Hellenic Studies. He is currently working on a database and book on music in ancient Greek and Roman theater.

Susan Rotroff is Jarvis Thurston and Mona Van Duyn Professor Emerita, having taught for many years in the Department of Classics and the Department of Art History and Archaeology at Washington University. She has degrees in archaeology from Bryn Mawr College and Princeton University. She has worked as an excavator and a pottery specialist on many excavations in Greece (Athens, Corinth, Aigina, and Mount Lykaion, among others), Turkey (Sardis and Troy), and Tunisia (Carthage). Since 1970 she has been associated with excavations at the Athenian Agora, the ancient political center of Athens. She has published several books on Greek ceramics from the excavations, focusing especially on pottery of the 5th century BCE and the Hellenistic period (3rd–1st centuries BCE). The chief focus of her research is on the use of pottery to shed light on the behavior of the ancient people who made and used it.

Zellie McClelland is an assistant dean in the College of Arts & Sciences and lecturer in the Department of Classics at Washington University in St. Louis. She earned a BA in history from Yale and an MA and PhD in classics and art history and archaeology from Washington University under the guidance of Professor Susan Rotroff. She has researched and examined the Kemper Art Museum's vases in depth with the numerous classes she has brought to view them at the Museum.