On Her Own Terms: The Archaeology of Esther Boise Van Deman

Friday, December 4–Saturday, December 5, 2015

AAR Gallery
Via Angelo Masina, 5
Rome, Italy
On Her Own Terms: The Archaeology of Esther Boise Van Deman

Detail of Esther Boise Van Deman, Via Traiana (Italy), Ponte Santo Spirito on the stream Buonalbergo, 1914, photographic print, 17 x 21 cm (© American Academy in Rome Photographic Archive)

This event is part of the New Work in the Arts & Humanities: Bodies of Knowledge series.

Esther Boise Van Deman made her way in 1901 from the American Midwest to the Eternal City, where she emerged as the first female archaeologist working alongside pioneers of the discipline, including Giacomo Boni, Christian Hülsen, and Thomas Ashby. As Rome was developing its identity as the new Italian capital, Van Deman actively contributed to the shift in archeology away from its previously antiquarian methods toward a more scientific, systematic approach. Upon her death in 1937 she left to the American Academy an extensive collection of notes, coins, and archaeological artifacts, along with a striking assemblage of photographs. All of these elements in combination create the image of a unique and passionate woman who revolutionized the field of archaeology and made important strides as a photographer.

This exhibition is organized by students from the Intercollegiate Center for Classical Studies under the supervision of Valentina Follo, Norton Van Buren Archaeological Study Collection Curator. It will be on view on Saturday and Sunday, December 5 and 6, from 4:00 to 7:00pm.