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New Meetup: Treasures From the Boston Athenaeum: Summer Installation 2009.

From: T.J. M.
Sent on: Wednesday, June 3, 2009 3:25 PM
Announcing a new Meetup for Nerd Fun - Boston!

What: Treasures From the Boston Athenaeum: Summer Installation 2009.

When: June 22,[masked]:30 PM

Where: Click the link below to find out!

Meetup Description: This installation opened up on May 28, 2009, according to the Boston Athenaeum Facebook page . On Mondays the Boston Athenaeum is now open from 9:00 am to 8:00 pm. From Tuesday to Friday, it is open from 9:00 am - 5:30 pm. Care to explore? Let's grab dinner somewhere after.

Boston Athen?um
Norma Jean Calderwood Gallery
Until August 28, 2009

"This summer, the Art Department presents ?TREASURES FROM THE BOSTON ATHEN?UM: Summer Installation 2009,? which will be on view in the Athen?um?s first-floor gallery.

"The paintings, sculptures, prints, drawings, photographs, and manuscripts in this summer installation draw entirely from the Athen?um?s collections and add to the wealth of objects already on display on the first floor of the building.

"Over forty artists are represented, ranging from Italian and Scottish to American, and from the 16th century to the present.

"The 'treasures' are as varied in style as in subject matter and include: a portrait by the sixteenth-century Bolognese master Annibale Carracci; works by American painters John Singleton Copley, Gilbert Stuart, Washington Allston, John Singer Sargent, Maud Morgan, and Polly Thayer; sculptures by Horatio Greenough, Thomas Crawford, and William Morris Hunt; views of Boston, painted and photographed; and nineteenth-century chromolithography.

"Since its founding in 1807, the Athen?um has always collected a wide range of objects as well as books. The result is a remarkably hybrid collection, and this installation provides a rare opportunity to look closely at the selected treasures ? both familiar favorites and seldom seen items ? from the Athen?um?s collections".

Where to meet:
Let's group up by 6:30 pm, meeting outside the Boston Athenaeum. T.J. Maher will probably get there at 6:00 pm. T.J. is 5 foot 7, with short brown hair, blue eyes, a "Hello My Name is T.J." nametag, and a red MEETUP sign attached to his black messenger bag.

Boston Globe, "Big Show Off":

"Like a proud parent, the Boston Athenaeum wants to show off its collections. Paintings, sculptures, drawings, photographs, and manuscripts representing more than 40 artists await at "Treasures From the Boston Athenaeum: Summer Installation 2009." The exhibit covers the 16th to the 21st centuries with pieces varying in subject matter and style. You'll spot paintings by John Singleton Copley (portrait of Mrs. William Turner, 1767, below), Gilbert Stuart, John Singer Sargent, and Annibale Carracci. Sculpture is represented by Horatio Greenough, Thomas Crawford, and William Morris Hunt".

There is one book of interest that will not be for public display...

... Last Halloween, Nerd Fun took two Ghosts and Gravestones Trolley tours, a Boston By Foot "Dark Side of Boston" tour, and a "Haunted Boston" walking tour, and they all referenced a certain book, bound in human skin stored in the Boston Athenaeum ... of course, a few Nerd Fun members wanted to see it in spite of the very concept to be stomach turning.

"Narrative of the life of James Allen, alias George Walton, alias Jonas Pierce, alias James H. York, alias Burley Grove, the highwayman. Being his death-bed confession, to the warden of the Massachusetts state prison"

"There is hardly a more curious treasure in the Athen?um Library than a little volume, bound in what seems a grayish leather, curious not only in itself, for it is the deathbed confession of a highwayman, but more curious by reason of its binding---in the skin of its author. The Latin inscription on its cover, HIC LIBER WALTONIS CUTE COMPACTUS EST, is susceptible of two translations: does it mean merely that Walton's book was bound in skin or in Walton's skin? The very name of George Walton was an alias for James Allen. So too were the names of Jonas Pierce, James H. York, and Burley Grove. Fortunately only one of them was Latinized for the label.

"The interpretation always accepted here has been that the highwayman's own skin was used. This belief has recently been confirmed in a striking manner. A visitor to the Athen?um a few months ago announced himself as the son and namesake of one George Arnold, who did cataloguing work at this Library some ninety years ago. The visitor's grandfather, Peter Low, had come to Boston from London, where his father and grandfather were in the book business. Here he was engaged in bookbinding, for the Old Corner Book Store and other clients."

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