February 18, 2009     
Contact: Karen Cardinal
Accounting, Web and Marketing Manager, Mead Art Museum

AMHERST, Mass.— Amherst College’s Mead Art Museum has launched a series of new episodes of its Museum Audio Tours podcast. Recorded by students in the museum’s volunteer docent program, the episodes explore works of art that are currently on display.

In one episode, for example, Tim Clark ’12 and Chelsea Amegatcher ’11 discuss Frederick William MacMonnies’ sculpture Bacchante, the original of which caused a scandal when first displayed at the Boston Public Library in 1896. In another, Sara Sligar ’10 and Elizabeth Ganley-Roper (Hampshire ’11) discuss Ary Scheffer’s painting Paolo and Francesca, which depicts the two adulterous lovers of Dante’s Inferno suffering the punishment of eternal winds as Dante and Virgil look on.

Museum Audio Tours is available for download on the Mead’s Web site and free of charge from the iTunes music store. Listeners are encouraged to upload the tour to their own mp3 players before visiting the museum. Visitors may also borrow pre-loaded iPods from the museum’s lobby desk.

The Mead Art Museum houses the art collection of Amherst College, totaling more than 16,000 works. An accredited member of the American Association of Museums, the Mead participates in Museums10, a regional cultural collaboration. During the academic term, the museum is open Tuesday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to midnight and from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday and Saturday. For more information, please visit the museum’s Web site, www.amherst/museums/mead, or call 413/542-2335.