October 17 @ 6:00 pm - 7:00 pm
The first program in a new series where a guest curator examines one object from our Special Collections. We welcome the Fairfield University Art Museum’s Curator of Education and Academic Engagement Dr. Michelle DiMarzo for discussion of the library’s 1854 The Quadrupeds of North America by John James Audubon and Rev. John Bachman.
The Quadrupeds of North America was John James Audubon’s (1785-1851) final project, begun after completing his monumental Birds of America. For what would be his final expedition, Audubon travelled from St. Louis up the Missouri River to Fort Union in the Western Dakota Territory, describing and painting several never-before depicted animals from the American frontier. Audubon died in January of 1851, leaving his son John Woodhouse (1812-1862) to finish roughly half of the drawings for Quadrupeds. This lithograph of “Townsend’s Rocky Mountain Hare,” is from one of the elder Audubon’s drawings. The plates for the octavo editions were first issued in 31 parts by subscription between 1849 and 1854. The initial print run of these lithographs supplied many of the later editions, as they were not necessarily printed in the order in which they were used.
Dr. Michelle DiMarzo is the Curator of Education and Academic Engagement at Fairfield University Art Museum. She is a 2007 graduate of Fairfield with a B.A. in Art History and English. DiMarzo went on to pursue graduate degrees in Art History, specializing in Italian Renaissance visual art. She received a Ph.D. in Art History from Temple University in 2017. Before returning to Fairfield, she held the Phyllis G. Gordan/Samuel H. Kress Foundation Two-Year Pre-doctoral Rome Prize at the American Academy in Rome. Prior to that, she taught courses at Fairfield University and Temple University, and was also a Spotlight Gallery Conversation educator at the Philadelphia Museum of Art.