Bowdoin College Museum of Art
Bowdoin College
Bowdoin College Museum of Art
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Teaching Exhibitions in the Becker Gallery
The Bowdoin College Museum of Art offers faculty and their students the unique opportunity to curate exhibitions. These are often installed in the Becker Gallery, a space that is designated for teaching exhibitions during the academic year. A faculty member collaborates with curatorial staff to develop a focused show that will complement a specific course.

The exhibitions generally run for six weeks, allowing students extended access to the works on view. Faculty often assign research and writing projects based on one or more works of art, or have students deliver oral presentations on select pieces. On occasion, students also become involved in the process of conceiving an exhibition, by selecting works, planning the layout, and writing gallery texts over the course of a semester.

Faculty-curated exhibitions generally require advance planning of several months, so please contact us as early as possible. If the project can be accommodated, curatorial staff will collaborate with you to develop an exhibition concept, choose appropriate works of art, and design and install the exhibition.
Access the Exhibition Proposal Form here.

Recent teaching exhibitions include:
March 30– July 9, 2017
For many American artists, New York City in the early twentieth century epitomized modern life. Through a variety of media, they captured an increasingly diverse populace, expanding skyline, and changed public mores. The group of print artists featured in this exhibition resisted the trend towards abstraction, choosing instead to represent the human figure in the urban environment.Curated by Sarah Freshnock ’17 in collaboration with Dana Byrd, assistant professor of art history, Bowdoin College.
January 10-April 16, 2017
Sosaku-hanga—creative prints (創作版画)—emerged as an artistic form of expression in twentieth-century Japan.  Artists of the creative print movement took charge of all phases of the production, mining printmaking’s opportunities for experimentation as they cut, inked, and printed the matrix. Generally characterized by a blocky style and large areas of flat color that approached abstraction, sosaku-hanga frequently featured a rough carving technique to celebrate the nature and materiality of the woodblock.This installation was co-curated by Alison Miller and by students from Art History 3180: "Japanese Print Culture," Fall 2016.

September 15, 2016 - January 29, 2017
Robert Frank played a leading role in re-writing contemporary standards for photography. This exhibition brings together a selection of rarely seen photographs from 1947, the year the artist first moved to the United States, to 1961, when he presented his first major museum exhibition.This exhibition was organized with Bowdoin faculty members Michael Kolster, Russ Rymer, and students in the spring 2016 seminars, “Writing Creative Nonfiction Through Photography” and “Documentary Photography.”
April 12- June 5, 2016
This exhibition examines the works of artists employed by European courts in the 16th century, such as the Medici in Florence, French royalty at Fontainebleau, and the Holy Roman Imperial courts in Vienna and Prague. Artists catered to the refined tastes of the European nobility by inventing sublime distortions of the human body, allegorical monsters, and ornamental grotesques. This exhibition is curated by Susan Wegner, associate professor of art history at Bowdoin College, and students from Art History 2240: “Mannerism.”
May 10 - August 30, 2015
This exhibition illuminates the experience of the Atlantic world in the eighteenth century. Art and artifacts drawn from the Museum’s collections shed light on the development of an extensive network among Europe, Africa, and the Americas that influenced identity and culture in the period. Curated by students in “Sugar, Tobacco, Rice and Rum: Art and Identity in the Atlantic World,” taught by Dana E. Byrd, assistant professor of art history, Bowdoin College
January 22-March 15, 2015
The parallel and intersecting cultural enterprises of art and literature since the Harlem Renaissance of the 1920s are valuable sources for the study of race relations in America. The artists and writers represented in this exhibition reimagined this typically hierarchical relationship and conspired to create new socio-political allegories and meanings. Organized with Elizabeth Muther, Associate Professor of English, Bowdoin College, in conjunction with her course English 2604: "African American Literature and Visual Culture."
May 8-June 8, 2014
This exhibition explored representations of the frontier in American culture from the nineteenth century to the present day, featuring works on paper by Carleton Warkins, Edward Curtis, Karl Bodmer, Dorothea Lange, and others that shed light on why the West of imagination and history endures in paradoxical and unexpected ways. Curated by students in History 1020: "Frontier Crossings: The Western Experience in American History" taught by Matt Klingle, Associate Professor of History and Environmental Studies at Bowdoin College.
Fantastic Stories: The Supernatural in Nineteenth-Century Japanese Prints
November 9-March 3, 2013
This exhibition featured Japanese woodblock prints that depict supernatural themes, including ghosts and demons. Students from Professor Vyjayanthi Selinger's course Asian Studies 246: "The Fantastic and Demonic in Japanese Literature" wrote texts on selected works that were developed into a gallery brochure.

"We Never See Anything Clearly" John Ruskin and Landscape Painting, 1840s-1870s
October 30-December 23, 2012
Bowdoin students Ben Livingston, class of 2013, and Ursula Moreno-VanderLaan, class of 2013, worked with Pamela Fletcher, Associate Professor of Art History, to research and organize the exhibition in connection with Art History 352: "The Pre-Raphaelites."

Michelangelo: Art and Afterlife
December 6-20, 2012
This exhibition highlighted the influence of Michelangelo's art and the legend of his character in the years after his death. Over the course of the semester, students from Associate Professor of Art History Susan Wegner's seminar, AH 324: "Art and Life of Michelangelo" researched prints by Renaissance artists, images of Michelangelo, and drawings that emulate his style.