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Art & Architecture

Radio City Music Hall: Front and Center for the Christmas Spectacular

There’s no more iconic holiday performance in New York than Radio City Music Hall’s famed Christmas Spectacular. And there’s no better way to see the precision dancing of the Rockettes than from prime orchestra seats in the fabulous art deco theater where the show has been a tradition since 1933. A behind-the-scenes tour of the Music Hall adds to the experience.

Date of event
Wednesday, December 11, 2019 - 6:45 a.m. to 11:00 p.m.

Art of the Department of Interior Daytime Tour

Discover the art and architecture that made the Stewart Lee Udall Department of the Interior Building a “symbol of a new day” during the Great Depression. The Interior Museum Murals Tour includes over 40 mural panels painted in the “New Deal” style, as well as 26 photographic murals by Ansel Adams.

Date of event
Thursday, December 12, 2019 - 11:00 a.m.

The House of Medici: The Art of Power

As bankers to some of Europe’s most important rulers, the Medici had a substantial influence on the geo-politics of their time, but perhaps their most enduring legacy is that as patrons of the arts. Rocky Ruggiero, a specialist in the Early Renaissance, explores how art and architecture became languages of their power. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1/2 credit)

Date of event
Thursday, December 12, 2019 - 6:45 p.m.

Yuletide at Winterthur and Longwood Gardens

Splendid architecture and decorative arts, glorious gardens, and spectacular holiday decorations indoors and out are just some of the reasons that an outing to two of the Brandywine Valley's favorite destinations offers an ideal way to spend a December day.

Date of event
Friday, December 13, 2019 - 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m.

Renaissance Pleasure Palaces: The Art of the Sensual Life

Wealthy Renaissance Italians loved their suburban villas, the private retreats adorned with the most magnificent of art that allowed owners and guests to indulge in a voluptuous and relaxed luxury. Rocky Ruggiero, a specialist in the Early Renaissance, explores the history, design, and art of three of the most beautiful and well-preserved of these villas. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1 credit)

Date of event
Saturday, December 14, 2019 - 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Old Town Alexandria: A Holiday Staycation

Treat yourself to a holiday-season overnight getaway that offers the perfect way to experience the heart of Old Town Alexandria’s heritage and charm: colonial architecture, museums, fine dining, the waterfront, and of course, a little shopping.

Date of event
Starts: Sunday, December 15, 2019 - 11:00 a.m.
Ends: Monday, December 16, 2019 - 4:00 p.m.

Holiday Magic at the White House: The Brightest Season at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue

Spend an afternoon with professional decorator and author Coleen Christian Burke as she covers the traditions of White House holiday decorating, brings you behind the scenes as the seasonal transformation takes place, and shares how modern first ladies from Jacqueline Kennedy to Melania Trump have lent their distinctive styles and creativity to guiding the seasonal themes.

Date of event
Sunday, December 15, 2019 - 2:00 p.m.

Muses and Mews: Artists and Their Cats

Expressive or aloof, affectionate or enigmatic, cats have complicated characters that make them compelling artists' muses. Curator Mary Savig of the Smithsonian Archives of American Art explores and illustrates the quirky and charming relationships that Jasper Johns, Frank Stella, Louise Nevelson, Georgia O'Keeffe, and other creators cultivated with their feline companions.

Date of event
Tuesday, December 17, 2019 - 7:00 p.m.

Introduction to Western Art: From the Great Pyramids to the Pantheon

In a fascinating overview of ancient material culture, art historian Renee Gondek surveys the paintings, sculptures, and architectural wonders produced in ancient Egypt and the Greco-Roman world that served as inspiration for generations of creators to come. (World Art History Certificate core course, 1 credit)

Date of event
Monday, January 6 to February 3, 2020 - 12:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. (no class Jan. 20)

Marcel Duchamp: Enfant Terrible and Innovative Genius

He was among the most influential and distinctive artists of the 20th century—and the most deliberately outrageous. Art historian Nancy G. Heller traces Marcel Duchamp’s life and art, focusing on a selection of his key works and explaining why they were—and still remain—important. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1/2 credit)

Date of event
Thursday, January 9, 2020 - 6:45 p.m.

Impressionist and Post-Impressionist Painting in France

In the late 19th century, the artists of two influential movements in French painting shocked the art establishment as they created radical new ways of depicting the world around them. Art historian Nancy G. Heller explores the sources, masterpieces, and later influences of these rebels, including their impact on early 20th-century art. (World Art History Certificate core course, 1 credit)

Date of event
Friday, January 10, 2020 - 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. and Saturday, January 11, 2020 - 9:30 a.m. to 4:15 p.m.

A Trio of Museum Gems: An Artful Weekend in New York

The Neue Gallery, Morgan Library and Museum, and the Frick Collection offer a rich array of delights for visitors. Enjoy an escape to Manhattan that gives you plenty of time to take in these distinctive and stunning smaller museums—and a night on the town to enjoy as you like. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1/2 credit)

Date of event
Depart: Saturday, January 11, 2020 - 8:30 a.m.
Return: Sunday, January 12, 2020 - 10:30 p.m.

Crafting the Buddha's Image

The image of Buddha is one of the world's most recognized religious symbols, but its origins are shrouded in mystery. Art historian Rob DeCaroli delves into the history of figural art in India to examine its beginnings and its power. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1/2 credit)

Date of event
Wednesday, January 15, 2020 - 6:45 p.m.

The Gilded Age

In the years after the Civil War, captains of industry and robber barons were the Gilded Age’s masters of the universe. Art historian Bonita Billman examines the influence of their wealth on the period’s extravagant art, architecture, and interior design, and also explores the dramatic chasm that opened between the haves and the have-nots. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1 credit)

Date of event
Saturday, January 25, 2020 - 9:30 a.m. to 4:15 p.m.

The Golden Age of Spanish Art

Over the 16th and 17th centuries, Spanish art flourished as it reflected the influences of Northern European and Italian artists and the complex forces of humanism and spirituality. Art historian Aneta Georgievska-Shine provides an overview of the era and the enduring achievements of the artists who shaped its visual culture. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1 credit)

Date of event
Friday, February 7, 2020 - 10:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Ancient Egypt Through Its Art and Architecture

The secret to understanding the daily life and culture of ancient Egypt under its great rulers and pharaohs is right before our eyes—in its art and architecture. Using evidence from recent archaeological discoveries, Egyptologist Jacquelyn Williamson surveys the social and historical realities of this seminal civilization. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1 credit)

Date of event
Saturday, February 8, 2020 - 9:30 a.m. to 4:15 p.m.

Seeing History Through Artists' Eyes

Artists such as Picasso, David, and Goya came to grips with the political upheavals of their day with heroic and searing images that elicit our admiration or moral outrage. Art historian Judy Scott Feldman examines the complex interplay between artistic expression and social and political content through the centuries. (World Art History Certificate core course, 1 credit)

Date of event
Wednesday, February 19 to March 11, 2020 - 6:45 p.m.

Baltimore Museums: A Study in Contrasts

The Baltimore Museum of Art and the American Visionary Art Museum represent two distinctive and divergent aspects of the city’s cultural scene. Spend a fascinating day visiting both with art historian Ursula Wolfman. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1/2 credit)

Date of event
Friday, February 21, 2020 - 8:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.

Henri Matisse: Master of Color and Line

Art historian Joseph Cassar offers an in-depth look at this revolutionary giant of 20th-century art whose prolific and varied body of work spans more than a half-century. (World Art History Certificate Program elective, 1 credit)

Date of event
Saturday, February 22, 2020 - 9:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Indian Art and Calligraphy: An Immersive Exploration

This unique series combines detailed looks at Indian and South Asian artworks in the Freer and Sackler collections with the opportunity to try your hand at authentic calligraphy inspired by them.

Date of event
Sunday, February 23 to March 29, 2020 – 10:15 a.m. to 1:15 p.m.

The Philadelphia Flower Show: A Preview of Spring

There’s no better way to sweep away winter than with an overnight escape to the horticultural paradise that’s the Philadelphia Flower Show. There’s no need to fight the crowds (or time): Spend 2 hours taking in the blooms before the show opens to the public, then enjoy a full day to explore the delights of the world’s largest annual floral exhibition.

Date of event
Depart: Sunday, March 1, 2020 - 10:00 a.m.
Return: Monday, March 2, 2020 - 8:00 p.m.

Celebrating Bob Ross's Joy of Painting

No television show was more aptly named than Bob Ross’s long-running “Joy of Painting.” Join curator Eric Jentsch of the American History Museum and Sarah Strohl of Bob Ross, Inc., as they examine the artist’s continuing legacy. This program includes a morning painting class to bring home a distinctive Ross-style landscape of your own as well as a lunch break.

Date of event
Sunday, March 1, 2020 - 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

Celebrating Bob Ross's Joy of Painting

No television show was more aptly named than Bob Ross’s long-running “Joy of Painting.” Join curator Eric Jentsch of the American History Museum and Sarah Strohl of Bob Ross, Inc., as they examine the artist’s continuing legacy. This program includes a mid-afternoon painting class to bring home a distinctive Ross-style landscape of your own.

Date of event
Sunday, March 1, 2020 - 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Sicily: Eternal Crossroads of the Mediterranean

From stark Greek temples through dazzling Roman and Arab-Norman mosaics and on to Baroque opulence and charming romantic-era revivals, art historian Janetta Rebold Benton highlights the aesthetic eclecticism and cultural signposts of the island of Sicily. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1 credit)

Date of event
Saturday, March 7, 2020 - 10:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

The Road to Nashville

If the new Ken Burns documentary Country Music has sparked your appetite to learn more about the form’s roots and influences, this special 5-day tour led by arts journalist Richard Selden offers the perfect way to do it. Packed with performances and music history—as well as art and architecture and terrific regional cuisine—this Southern journey to Music City USA is sure to be a top-of-the-charts experience.

Date of event
Depart: Sunday, March 22, 2020 - 8:00 a.m.
Return: Thursday, March 26, 2020 - 6:00 p.m.