Art Lecture Series

DCA Art Lecture Series 2015 "America is Hard to See" starts in October.

Every fall, the Art Lecture Series Committee brings yet another fantastic series of lectures to the DCA. The lectures offer an in-depth look into a specific type of art, and are led by curators and other art scholars from the region. This series is sponsored by Sarah Blank Design Studio in Greenwich, CT.

Recent Lectures

2015 Art Lecture Series – “America is Hard to See”
Whitney Museum of American Art

Four Thursdays: October 8th, 15th, 22nd & 29th
11:00am lecture (except 10/15 11:30am lecture), luncheon to follow*

Three curators from the Whitney Museum of American Art and a university professor will examine and discuss the museum’s “America is Hard to See” Inaugural Exhibition. The Whitney’s new downtown home at the base of the High Line, and this show, have generated much excitement and rave reviews from critics and the public alike.

Presented by Whitney Curators:
Jane Panetta
Laura Phipps
Elisabeth Sherman

& Michael Lobel, Professor
Purchase College, State University of New York

Series admission


*Specially designed American “farm-to-table” themed luncheons will feature New England, Southern, and Heartland cuisine by Carolyn’s Absolutely Fabulous Events. Luncheons follow the lecture.

DCA Art Lecture Series 2015: Marsden Hartley's "Painting, Number 5" will be discussed by Jane Panetta from the Whitney Museum of American Art on Thursday, October 8, 20151900-1950: An Introduction
Thursday, October 8th
Join us for the DCA Art Lecture Series

Presented by Jane Panetta, Associate Curator
Whitney Museum of American Art


This lecture will consider the Whitney Museum’s inaugural exhibition, “America is Hard to See”, and will begin with an overview of the show’s conception and organization. The presentation will touch on early work included in the show from approximately 1900 to 1950, featuring examples by American Modernists such as Marsden Hartley, Stuart Davis, Georgia O’Keeffe, and Edward Hopper. Lastly, this talk will consider the process of selecting work for the show, the organizing themes of the exhibition, and the significance of the Whitney’s collection being presented in-depth, in its new downtown home. Image credit: Marsden Hartley (1877-1943). Painting, Number 5, 1914-15. Oil on linen. (39 1/4 x 32 in.). Whitney Museum of American Art.


DCA Art Lecture Series 2015: John Sloan’s “Women’s Page” will be discussed by Michael Lobel from Purchase College, State University of New York on Thursday, October 15, 2015Illustration Is Hard to See: An Inside Outsider’s View
Thursday, October 15th
11:30am (please note later start time)

Presented by Michael Lobel, Professor
Purchase College, State University of New York

The presentation of the Whitney’s permanent collection offers a reappraisal of American art from 1900 to the present. No matter how expansive that revised view, there is still more to be said about the connection between the works of art on exhibit and contemporaneous popular images. This lecture will present a different approach, by exploring the illustrating careers of some of the most influential practitioners of early twentieth-century American art, showing how their art is inextricably linked to the popular imagery they created. Image credit: John Sloan (1871 – 1951). Women’s Page, 1905. Etching. (5 x 6 7/8 in.). © 2013 Delaware Art Museum/Artists Rights Society, New York. Reynolda House Museum of American Art, Winston-Salem, NC.


DCA Art Lecture Series 2015: Roy Lichtenstein’s “Little Big Painting" will be discussed by Laura Phipps from the Whitney Museum of American Art on Thursday, October 22, 20151950-1970
Thursday, October 22nd

Presented by Laura Phipps, Assistant Curator
Whitney Museum of American Art

“America is Hard to See” offers new perspectives on American art in the 20th century, while challenging the linear art historical “isms” of the past. This lecture will examine the postwar period from approximately 1950 – 1970. It will touch on themes related to abstraction, Pop art, and the tumultuous politics of the 1960s and 70s. Artists such as Jasper Johns, On Kawara, Roy Lichtenstein, and Allan D’Arcangelo will be highlighted within a discussion that will closely consider the radical and groundbreaking shifts realized in American art-making during this two decade period. Image credit: Roy Lichtenstein (1923-1997). Little Big Painting, 1965. Oil and acrylic on canvas. (68”x 80” in.) Whitney Museum of American Art.


DCA Art Lecture Series 2015: Robert Gober’s “Untitled" will be discussed by Elisabeth Sherman from the Whitney Museum of American Art on Thursday, October 29, 20151970 – Present
Thursday, October 29nd

Presented by Elisabeth Sherman, Assistant Curator
Whitney Museum of American Art

The Whitney’s institutional mission is to dedicate itself to living, working American artists — the new building expanding all possibilities for examination and exploration. Looking at the period from 1970 to the present, the lecture will highlight artists’ engagement with the development of new media and found imagery, with a particular focus on political work from the 1980s and 90s. In addition, the presentation will consider some of the most recent work included in the exhibition, through a discussion of contemporary artists such as Carol Bove, Robert Gober, Josh Kline, and Wade Guyton. Image credit: Robert Gober (1954-). Untitled, 1991. Wax, cloth, wood, leather, human hair. (12 5/16 x 10 1/4 x 37 1/2 in.) Whitney Museum of American Art.
To receive notice of upcoming lectures, please subscribe to our DCA emails through the link below, and select “Art Lecture Series” as one of your areas of interest, or contact the DCA directly.

Receive notice of upcoming Art Lecture Series events by subscribing to DCA emails through this link

2014 Art Lecture Series – El Greco, Goya & Sorolla: Three Artistic Visions
The DCA 2014 Art Lecture Series will be presented by Marcus B. Burke, Ph.D., Senior Curator at The Hispanic Society of AmericaPresented by Marcus B. Burke, Ph.D., Senior Curator
The Hispanic Society of America

View details of this series through this link. 



2013 Art Lecture Series –
The Rite of Modernism: Sensation and Shock in New York/Paris 1913

The 2013 DCA Art Lecture Series will be held on Thursdays, September 26 and October 17, 24 & 31.One hundred years ago, on both sides of the Atlantic, two seminal events occurred which were breakthroughs in the worlds of art and music — forever altering the cultural landscape of the 20th century. Over the course of four weeks, in the Winter of 1913, close to 75,000 people made their way to the 69th Regiment Armory on Lexington Avenue at 25th Street to visit the International Exhibition of Modern Art which was organized by the “Association of American Painters and Sculptors.” The critics’ columns were full of descriptions of the “grotesque” paintings that had been shipped over from Europe. It caused a sensation. Image: “Nude Descending a Staircase (No. 2)” 1912 Marcel Duchamp, Philadelphia Museum of Art.

Less than four months later, the inaugural performance of Diaghilev’s “The Rite of Spring,” orchestrated by the Russian composer Igor Stravinsky, premiered at the Théâtre des Champs Elysées in Paris. On opening night, a riot almost broke out among the audience, threatening the dancers and musicians with their shouts, hisses and catcalls.

Our 2013 series relived this fascinating period, beginning with an afternoon lecture exploring this musical modernism, with the three remaining morning lectures delving into the 1913 Armory Show, the most important art exhibition in the history of the United States. Read further details of this period, view the lecture calendar, and explore related videos and exhibits through this link.
2012 Art Lecture Series – The Frick Collection 

Art-Lecture-Series-2012-Frick-Museum-verticalWe were delighted to feature The Frick Collection – the venerable Gilded Age mansion and museum on Fifth Avenue in New York – with their own curators offering our attentive audiences a glimpse at their expansive knowledge. Please find the list of presenters and their topics below, followed by those of previous years. The DCA Art Lecture Series is proudly sponsored by SBD Kitchens, LLC in Darien, CT. Read further details of this series through this link.

Image credit: The Frick Collection, New York. Photo: Galen Lee


2011 Art Lecture Series – “Paris – Le Seduction Artistique”

The DCA's 2011 Art Lecture Series was entitled "Paris - Le Seduction Artistique". Image credit - Nasturtiums with the Painting “Dance,” 1912 Henri Matisse, Metropolitan Museum of Art. (1)“Man Ray/Lee Miller: Partners in Surrealism” Presented by Phillip Prodger, Head, Photography Department, Peabody-Essex Museum, Salem, MA, Ph.D., Cambridge University

“Ruhlmann: Genius of Art Deco” Presented by Jared Goss, Associate Curator, Metropolitan Museum Of Art, M.A., Cooper-Hewitt Museum/Parsons School of Design

“A Preview of Matisse: In Search of True Painting”
An Exhibition Opening Next Year at The Metropolitan Museum of Art
Presented by Rebecca A. Rabinow, Curator, Dept. of Nineteenth Century, Modern and Contemporary Art, Metropolitan Museum of Art, Ph.D., Institute of Fine Arts, New York University

Image credit: Nasturtiums with the Painting “Dance,” 1912 Henri Matisse, Metropolitan Museum of Art. (1)


2010 Art Lecture Series – “Italy: A Grand Tour”

Connoisseurship and the “Eye” of the Collector
Presented by Richard L. Feigen, International Art Dealer

Art Lecture Series Committee

These lectures would not be possible without the dedication and hard work of the committee:

Co-Chairs – Patricia Hedlund, Marian Castell
Committee –  Dorothy Baker, Barbara Conrad, June Foster, Maureen Pollart, Judy Rodriguez, Elsie Wheeler and Martha Yaney

The 2014 DCA Art Lecture Series Committee