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Saturday, October 29 • 8:30am - 10:00am
#s1a: Reframing Art History Through Digital Approaches

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Viewing the Global through a Local Lens. Student and Faculty Scholars Explore the Collections in Packwood House in Lewisburg, PA
Janice Mann, Rebecca Reeve, Nicole Adams, and Ariel Senackerib (Bucknell University)

The Packwood House Museum in Lewisburg, PA houses the paintings and works of art collected by Edith Hedges Kelly Fetherston, an artistic women who fancied herself to be a less prominent version of Boston’s Isabella Stewart Gardner. Born in Lewisburg, PA in 1885 but living most of her life elsewhere, Fetherston returned to her birthplace with her husband John in 1936.  Shortly, thereafter John and Edith decided to make their home into a museum for Edith’s paintings and the array of objects that they collected on their travels and at home.  While the couple were alive, only friends were allowed to view the collection but after Edith’s death in 1976, the house became a museum open to the general public.

This summer three art history students–Nicole Adams, Rebecca Reeve and Ariel Senackerib–and I will examine Edith Fetherston’s paintings, letters, postcards, and the objects she collected using various digital tools.  Nicole intends to create a digital tour in Slate that utilizes excerpts from Fetherston’s diaries and postcards in combination with selected objects from the collection to restore the collector’s voice to the objects and to reveal her curatorial decisions. Ariel’s project explores the “exotic” features of Fetherston’s paintings and their sources with the intent of revealing the artist’s attitude towards and understanding of Asia.  Her essay on this subject will introduce a complete digital catalog of the paintings which she will create this summer.  Finally, Rebecca will take on the daunting task of creating a digital archive of the personal papers and ephemera in the Packwood House archive.  We anticipate that the archive will reveal much about the public and private lives of an upper class couple with artistic interests, who engaged deeply with the world outside of their small town.  These projects, each valuable in its own right, will also survive my research project which will examine Edith Fetherston within the broader contexts of female collectors and artists, and the concept of the “artistic” woman in the early twentieth-century United States.

Digital Tools and Physical Objects: Connecting Museums, Teaching, and Scholarship through Art History Teaching Resources
Renee McGarry (Sotheby’s Institute of Art)

This presentation will highlight specific entries on the AHTR Weekly blog and in our lesson plan project that have bridged the divide between academic art history, museums, and K-12 classrooms. These include entries on the AHTR Weekly concerning one of the largest Art + Feminism Wikipedia Edit-a-thons in the country and how the same principles were applied in a classroom, the differences between mentoring for those teaching in museums and those teaching in the university, the connections between lesson plans about the Near East and Islam and contemporary violence committed by ISIS, and the suggestions made by the College Board to revitalize AP art history and how they can be applied to higher education. We will end by discussing how the relationship between AHTR and its recently launched online open access journal, Art History Pedagogy and Practice, can serve as a means of connecting museum education, teaching, and scholarship further by offering a means by which the majority of academic labor, as seen through the lens of the scholarship of teaching and learning (SoTL), can be taken seriously in university systems and beyond.

avatar for Courtney Paddick

Courtney Paddick

Librarian for the Arts and Humanities, Bucknell University


Nicole Adams

Bucknell University

Janice Mann


Renee McGarry

Art History Teaching Resources

Rebecca Reeve

Bucknell University

Ariel Senackerib

Bucknell University

Saturday October 29, 2016 8:30am - 10:00am
Walls Lounge 2nd Floor, ELC

Attendees (21)