March 6, 2006
Director of Media Relations
AMHERST, Mass.—Katharine Martinez of the Fine Arts Library of Harvard College Library will lecture on “The Art of Display: Collecting and Displaying Art in a 19th-Century Amherst Home” at 4 p.m. on Wednesday, March 29, at the Amherst College Alumni House. The event is sponsored by the Emily Dickinson Museum. Focusing on the Dickinson family at The Evergreens, Martinez will discuss the ways in which the 19th-century American middle class collected and displayed art in their homes. The event, part of the Museums10-sponsored GoDutch! festival, is free and open to the public.
The Evergreens, the home of Austin and Susan Dickinson, Emily Dickinson’s brother and sister-in-law, served as a hub of Amherst social life in the mid-to-late 19th century. The Dickinsons were avid consumers of art, compiling a varied number of works that ranged from the Hudson River school to English, French and Dutch imports.
Martinez has been the Herman and Joan Suit Librarian of the Fine Arts Library of Harvard College Library since 1998. She has written extensively on the display of art and visual culture in late 19th- and early 20th- century American homes. Her most recent publication, “At Home with Mona Lisa: Consumers and Commercial Visual Culture 1880-1920,” was in the anthology Seeing High and Low: Representing Social Conflict in American Visual Culture (Berkeley: University of California Press).
GoDutch! is a region-wide celebration of Dutch Art and culture spearheaded by Museums10, and supported by the Greater Springfield Convention and Visitors Bureau. GoDutch! is open to cultural organizations throughout the Pioneer Valley (Franklin, Hampshire and Hampden Counties). For more information, go to Museums10.org. See a full list of all GoDutch! events.
The Emily Dickinson Museum, comprising the Dickinson Homestead and The Evergreens, two historic houses in Amherst, is devoted to the story and legacy of poet Emily Dickinson and her family. The Dickinson Homestead was the birthplace and residence of the poet (1830-1886). The Evergreens was the 1856 home of the poet’s brother and sister-in-law, Austin and Susan Dickinson. Merged into a single museum in 2003, both properties are owned by the Trustees of Amherst College. For more information, go to the Emily Dickinson Museum website.