Object Biographies Collaborative Approaches to Ancient Mediterranean Art John North Hopkins, Sarah Kielt Costello, Paul R Davis

Publication date:
12 Jan 2021
The Menil Collection
240 pages: 254 x 203mm
92 color + b-w illus.
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A revealing look at ancient art in the Menil Collection that addresses the problem of objects lacking archaeological context

This innovative presentation of ancient objects in the Menil Collection offers a new model for understanding works from antiquity that lack archaeological context. Editors  John North Hopkins, Sarah Kielt Costello, and Paul R. Davis with 11 additional authors employ a creative mixture of iconography, technical studies, and known provenance to gain insight into both the meaning of the objects themselves and what they can teach us more broadly about archaeology, art history, and collecting practices. As they take on complex issues of cultural heritage, legality, and taste, these essays bring to life works that are often consigned to either the imperial past or conceptual limbo and introduce a fresh framework through which to engage with the multilayered history that these objects represent. 

John North Hopkins is an assistant professor of art history at the Institute of Fine Arts, New York University. Sarah Kielt Costello is an associate professor of art history at the University of Houston–Clear Lake. Paul R. Davis is curator of collections at the Menil Collection.