Andrew Graciano, associate professor of art history, associate chair and graduate director in the department of art, University of South Carolina, will present the fall 2013 Norman L. and Roselea J. Goldberg Lecture in Art History on Thursday, September 26, at 4:10 p.m. in 203 Cohen Hall. His lecture is titled Joseph Wright’s Academy by Lamplight (1769) In Context.
With a passionate interest in the relationships among art, science, economics and politics in the Age of Enlightenment in Europe, the scope of Graciano’s research extends beyond that of traditional art history and incorporates other histories, especially those of medicine and natural philosophy.
“Andrew Graciano is one of the most promising younger scholars in the field of British art and already speaks with an authoritative voice,” said Christopher Johns, Norman L. and Roselea J. Goldberg Professor of History of Art. “His publications are widely cited and he is an acknowledged authority on the work of the important Enlightenment artist Joseph Wright of Derby.”
His book, Joseph Wright, Esq: Painter and Gentleman (Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2012), reevaluates Wright’s career and social status and demonstrates how the artist’s later landscapes, portraits and historical paintings are connected to a broader historical context, including contemporary science, industry, economics and the history of ideas. Graciano reinforces the idea that Wright was an intellectual painter, very much engaged with current ideas in these realms, as well as a gentleman of means beyond his artistic income, which gave him a social standing often ignored by previous scholars.
Graciano is finishing an edited volume for Ashgate Publishing, Exhibiting outside the Academy, Salon and Biennial, 1775-1999: Alternative Venues for Display (forthcoming 2014-15). His annotated edition of Benjamin Wilson’s autobiographical memoir appears as a chapter in the 74th Volume of the Walpole Society (2012) as “The Memoir of Benjamin Wilson, FRS (1721-1788): Painter and Electrical Scientist.” It also highlights a pervasive interconnectedness among the arts and sciences in eighteenth-century England and Ireland.
In recent years he has edited Visualising the Unseen, Imagining the Unknown, Perfecting the Natural: Art and Science in the 18th and 19th Centuries (Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2008), an anthology that brings together recent scholarship in the field by several contributing authors. Graciano continues to pursue his interest in early Creole nationalism and the Catholic Enlightenment in the religious art of eighteenth-century Puerto Rican painter José Campeche (1751-1809).
Sponsored by the Department of History of Art, Graciano’s lecture is free and open to the public, and parking is available in Lot 95 outside Cohen Hall, off 21st Avenue South on the Peabody campus and across from Medical Center East.