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Description: I, Claudia: Women in Ancient Rome
From its inception, I, Claudia: Women in Ancient Rome has been a magical collaboration. It came from our dream to mount an exhibition on Roman women that would be visually exciting, contextually rich, and seminal to our understanding of the major impact Roman women had on their world and on western civilization. Inspired by our joint effort to augment...
PublisherYale University Art Gallery
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From its inception, I, Claudia: Women in Ancient Rome has been a magical collaboration. It came from our dream to mount an exhibition on Roman women that would be visually exciting, contextually rich, and seminal to our understanding of the major impact Roman women had on their world and on western civilization. Inspired by our joint effort to augment Yale’s collection of Roman portraiture by the acquisition for the Gallery of portraits of an elite Roman matron and a young girl, this project has enabled us to continue to work together and to expand our collaboration to include an international team of eminent scholars and talented graduate students. Guiding the latter at Yale over the past decade and a half has been extraordinarily rewarding. They have taught us as much as we have taught them and this exhibition and catalogue serve as a lasting testament to the benefits of collaborative work in the humanities. It is to these very special graduate students and to this kind of synergistic work that this catalogue is dedicated.
As this collaboration has grown, the circle of participants has happily expanded and the number of institutions and individuals that merit our gratitude is great. We would be remiss not to offer our first and most profound acknowledgement to Yale University. Without the extraordinary human, research, and collections resources of this great University, a project of this magnitude would not have been possible. Nor would it have moved forward without the unwavering support of the former and present Directors of the Yale University Art Gallery, Mary Gardner Neill, Jules D. Prown, and Susan Vogel. Each in his or her own way made a very special contribution to I, Claudia.
An Andrew W. Mellon Fellowship, the purpose of which was to encourage collaborative projects between the Yale Art Gallery and the Department of the History of Art, provided funds to get the exhibition off the ground and enabled us to benefit from the expert assistance of a series of graduate students: Michael Behen, Pieter Broucke, Penelope Davies, Elizabeth La Rocco, and Joanne Thompson. Joel Allen and Caroline Kerrigan Quenemoen, graduate students in the Department of Classics and curatorial assistants in the Gallery, also provided fundamental research and expertise on many levels. Funds from the Mellon Foundation were also kindly provided for publication costs of the catalogue. An exceptionally generous grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities has literally allowed the exhibition to take place and has encouraged and enabled us to explore ways in which the exhibition could reach out to the broader New Haven and Connecticut communities through a computer program, a symposium and curriculum book for secondary school teachers, and a family festival day. The Connecticut Commission on the Arts provided additional funding for the secondary school teacher symposium. We would like to thank Clifton F. Weidlich for his serendipitous donation to the project. We also want to acknowledge grants from the Office of the Provost and the Department of Classics at Yale University to fund the scholarly symposium accompanying the exhibition. We are also grateful to Dennis Danaher and Judith Hackman of Yale University’s Office of Corporate and Foundation Relations for additional fundraising assistance.
Like the exhibition, the catalogue has been a collaboration in the humanities, bringing together an international team of scholars and students of art history, history, and classics. Our catalogue contributors, Klaus Fittschen, Natalie Kampen, Susan Treggiari, Andrew Wallace-Hadrill, and Gordon Williams, are to be lauded for their stimulating and timely essays. Those writing catalogue entries, Joel Allen, Judith Barringer, Michael Behen, Pieter Broucke, Sarah Cormack, Penelope Davies, Robert Huitt, Fred S. Kleiner, Elizabeth La Rocco, Amy Prescher, Caroline Kerrigan Quenemoen, Amy Smith, Joanne Thompson, and Eric Varner, are to be complimented for taking on the challenge of doing these in a somewhat unorthodox way that favored variety over conformity, a variety that they readily and creatively adapted to their particular objects or groups of objects.
We are grateful to Jane Barry, who has done an outstanding job editing the catalogue, improving the text with impeccable skill, without sacrificing the individual styles of this diverse group of authors. We also thank Derick Dreher for his sensitive translation of Klaus Fittschen’s essay.
Nathan Garland’s impact on this catalogue is immediately apparent. We applaud the exceptional design he has brought to the catalogue, and the dedication, collaborative spirit, and good humor with which he has overseen its production. Above all, we appreciate his willingness to enter into the world of the Romans in order to give the book an authentic feel.
We are delighted that the University of Texas Press is the distributor for the book, and we are especially grateful to Joanna Hitchcock for her enthusiastic support of the project from the start. Karl Galinsky’s assistance is also greatly appreciated.
This project would never have been realized without the support of many museum directors and curators who greeted our proposal for I, Claudia with great enthusiasm and were generously responsive to our request for loans. We would like to single out Robert Babcock, Anne Hendricks Bass, Jane Biers, Susan Boyd, Anne R. Bromberg, Elizabeth Broun, Betsy Bryan, John Burnham, Adriana Calinescu, Robert Cohon, James Cuno, Bertrand Davezac, Marianne Doezema, Julie Droke, Alison Harle Easson, Richard Fazzini, Judith Hoos Fox, Florence Friedman, Elaine Gazda, William Hallo, John Herrmann, Ulla Kasten, Janice B. Klein, Christine Kondoleon, Areille Kozloff, Rebecca Lawton, the late Kurt Luckner, Michael Mares, Peter Marzio, Margaret Ellen Mayo, William Metcalf, Joan Mertens, David Mitten, Mary Gardner Neill, Judith Neiswander, Michael Padgett, William D. Peck, Carlos Picón, Edmund P. Pillsbury, Ellen Reeder, Anne Schaffer, Douglas Schultz, Gerry D. Scott, III, Mary Ellen Soles, Keith Stanley, Timothy Standring, David Steadman, Nancy Thomas, Marion True, Charles Venable, Cornelius Vermeule, Ian Wardropper, Katherine Watson, Wendy Watson, James Welu, Karol Wight, Paul Winkler, Marc Wilson, and William D. Wixom. Cornelius Vermeule deserves special gratitude for his helpful suggestions of additional works we might incorporate into the exhibition, as well as for the loan of Aemilia. We are especially gratified that I, Claudia will travel to Raleigh, North Carolina, and San Antonio, Texas, and want to thank Mary Ellen Soles and Gerry D. Scott, III for making this possible. Expert advice and scholarly opinions from Klaus Fittschen, Andrew Gregory, Fred Kleiner, Andrew Oliver, John Pollini, Eric Varner, and Cornelius Vermeule were also greatly appreciated.
Virtually everyone on the Gallery’s talented staff has been involved in this exhibition at some point, and we are grateful to them all. We especially wish to thank several Gallery colleagues who have been particularly fundamental to the project: Patricia Barratt, the Exhibition Coordinator; Carolyn Padwa, Associate Registrar; Louisa Cunningham, Business Manager, and Marga Foerster, Financial Assistant; Daphne Deeds, Curator of Exhibitions and Programs, and Mary Kordak, Associate Curator of Education; Debbie Cook, Membership Coordinator; Mark Aronson, Chief Conservator, Marie Weltzien, Public Relations; Richard Moore, Operations Manager, Burras Harlow, Assistant Operations Manager, and Nancy Valley and Maishe Dickman, Museum Technicians; Carolyn Fitzgerald, Security Supervisor, and her entire staff. Special thanks are also offered to Jennifer Roach, Mary Sagarin, and Adrienne Leigh Sharpe for their generous help on all levels. We are grateful to Carol Snow for her participation as consultant conservator.
The design for the exhibition in New Haven is also the result of the collaborative efforts of Pieter Broucke, the exhibition’s curators, and Clifford La Fontaine, who revised and improved the installation with sensitivity and flair. Clifford’s knowledge of the material and his professional expertise were invaluable.
Unique to the Yale venue are the fountain and roses of the exhibition’s atrium and the Roman garden set into the courtyard of our Louis Kahn building, which we owe to Michael Cunningham and the New Haven Garden Club. We are especially grateful to Michael, and to Lucy Elliott, President, Joyce Gentry, Maria Granquist, and Betsy Harris for their inspired creations in true historic style.
We would like to thank Jean Lamont, Head, The Foote School in New Haven, for her support and for allowing us to benefit from fruitful discussions of matters of mutual interest with members of her faculty, especially Virginia Corbière and Edith Flagg of the Foote School Computer Department. Caroline Kerrigan Quenemoen and Joel Allen are to be singled out for praise in conceiving the computer program accompanying the exhibition and Dana Angluin Eisenstat for providing additional helpful advice.
We are also grateful to Mary T. Boatwright, Eve D’Ambra, Andrew Oliver, Jr., Cornelius Vermeule, Rolf Winkes, and Susan Wood for agreeing to participate in a scholarly symposium for I, Claudia, and to Robert Babcock of the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library at Yale for organizing a complimentary session on Women in Egyptian Papyri, in which Ann Ellis Hanson, Roger Bagnall, and Diana Delia will be speakers.
The Association of Yale Alumni will also sponsor a weekend seminar on I, Claudia and we are grateful to Eustace Theodore and Judith Cushingham for making this possible.
For the collaboration to come full circle, it is incumbent on the editors to recognize their indebtedness to the Claudias of the Roman world, and they do so with respect and admiration.
Diana E. E. Kleiner
Dunham Professor of Classics and the History of Art
Deputy Provost for the Arts
Yale University
Suasan B. Matheson
Curator of Ancient Art
Yale University Art Gallery
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