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American Art Research

Curator's Travel Journal: In Rufino Tamayo's Footsteps (5)

May 5, 2016

E. Carmen Ramos, curator of Latino Art at SAAM was recently in Mexico to research her upcoming exhibition on the acclaimed 20th-century Mexican artist Rufino Tamayo's lengthy residence and production in New York City, Tamayo: The New York Years. This is the fifth in a series of posts Carmen scribed from the road. Stay tuned for more updates. Read all of Carmen's notes from her research trip.


Nicholas Nixon's The Brown Sisters

March 9, 2016

The museum recently acquired The Brown Sisters, an intimate series of forty photographs that spans four decades and captures the poignancy of family relationships and bonds between siblings.


Symposium: Shifting Terrain: Mapping a Transnational American Art History

October 1, 2015

On October 16th–17th, the Smithsonian American Art Museum will hold the final event in its five-part series: "The Terra Symposia on American Art in a Global Context." This fall's capstone event, "Shifting Terrain: Mapping a Transnational American Art History," speakers will discuss the transformation of the field over the past decade and suggests future directions for scholarship.


Finding a 19th Century Shortcut: The Body Casting of Hiram Powers’ Greek Slave

July 22, 2015

Karen Lemmey, SAAM's sculpture curator, has organized an installation entitled Measured Perfection: Hiram Powers' Greek Slave. Powers' Greek Slave was one of the most popular sculptures of the 19th century. As part of her preparation, Karen worked with Smithsonian X 3D, part of the Institution's Digitization program, to create a 3D model of the this sculpture. Karen continues to explain the process. You may also read her first post on creating a 3D model of the sculpture, as well as a piece about conserving the Greek Slave.


Computers and Art

March 23, 2015

This blog post is adapted from an essay written by Michael Mansfield, associate curator of film and media arts, to accompany the exhibition, Watch This! Revelations in Media Art, opening April 24 and running through September 7.