The Deerfield-Wellesley Symposium
March 10, 2012
A one-day symposium exploring the influence of travel and study abroad on New England women painters, sculptors, photographers, and collectors during the second half of the 19th century. New England women from both elite and modest backgrounds increasingly traveled outside the United States as tourists to escape social constraints and to gain the artistic training largely denied them at home. Upon their return, these women brought with them a new perspective on their surroundings, their social milieu, and themselves. While Isabella Stewart Gardner most famously built her Venetian palazzo on the Fenway, other women built studios, salons, and social networks that supported their artistic pursuits. Their paintings, photography, sculptures, interiors, collecting activities, and landscape designs all reflect their extended stays in foreign cities and artists’ colonies.