Pompeii Archive: Recent Photographs by William Wylie

(October 25 – December 6, 2018)

Featuring a selection of recent work by American photographer William Wylie, Pompeii Archive, explores the famous archeological site of a volcanic eruption in 79 C.E. with highly evocative images, shot with analog black and white film on a large format camera. Alongside his contemporary photographs are several by Giorgio Sommer (1834–1914), who was involved in excavation of the site in the nineteenth century.

An avid historian, Wylie began collecting Sommer’s images and researching his life and work. What intrigued the artist particularly was Sommer’s strategic use of photography to flatten the picture plane and create layered and stratified images evocative of the archeological process.

Wylie, a Professor of Art at the University of Virginia, was supported in this project by Yale University’s Doran Artist in Residency awards at the Sol and Carol LeWitt estate in Praiano, Italy, where Wylie was a resident in 2012 and 2015.

Pompeii Archive: Recent Photography by William Wylie is organized by the Gregory Allicar Museum of Art at Colorado State University. It is brought to the Vanderbilt University Fine Arts Gallery in part through the support of the Program in Classical and Mediterranean Studies, with additional support provided by the Department of Art and the Department of History of Art.

I AM: Middle Eastern Women Artists and the Quest to Build Peace

(August 30 – October 10, 2018)

Opening reception Thursday, August 30
from 5 to 7 pm in Cohen Memorial Hall

Special Guests

Nicholas S. Zeppos
Chancellor, Vanderbilt University

Rev. Canon Paul-Gordon Chandler
Founding President, CARAVAN

Sheikha Lulwa Al Khalifa
Featured Artist


Special Event

A  panel discussing the influential role of Middle Eastern women in the global arts community will be held at 6 pm, September 12 at Vanderbilt University in conjunction with Nashville’s Faith and Culture Center.
Specific details will be announced on the Fine Arts Gallery website and on the University Calendar.


Guest curated by Janet Rady, a specialist in Middle Eastern contemporary art, I AM features the work of thirty-one premier Middle Eastern women artists from twelve countries, visually celebrating the rich, diverse, and pivotal contributions that women make to the enduring global quest for harmony and peace. The exhibition premiered at the National Gallery of Fine Arts in Amman, Jordan, in May/June 2017. It was then showcased at St. Martin-in-the-Fields on Trafalgar Square in London, U.K., for July/August 2017, and premiered its U.S. tour in Washington, D.C., at the Katzen Arts Center of the American University Museum in September/October 2017. The Vanderbilt presentation will be one of six in North America.

I AM is organized by CARAVAN, a nonprofit organization that promotes dialogue, understanding, and friendship between the West and the Middle East through the belief that the arts have the potential to unite and act as a universal language. The founding president of the organization, Rev. Paul-Gordon Chandler, says of their mission that “In the midst of the increasing chasm of misunderstanding that exists between the Middle East and West, the arts can be one of the most effective mediums to provide new pathways of understanding which transcend borders, helping us put ourselves in ‘the other’s’ shoes.”

I AM: Middle Eastern Women Artists and the Quest to Build Peace is brought to the Vanderbilt University Fine Arts Gallery with the generous support of the Office of the Chancellor.

Joyce Tenneson – Botanical Beauty

(July 26 – August 18, 2018)

Joyce Tenneson—Botanical Beauty presents work drawn from two portfolios by the artist, both of which feature atmospheric, poetic photographs of flowers in high contrast with a black background. The first series, Flower Portraits, presents sepia-toned images of flowers in decay. Tenneson has adeptly captured movement, wonder, and vibrancy in them, as well as a sublime beauty. Intimacy, the second portfolio, features a wide variety of flowers, photographed in color in a sensuous, almost ethereal, manner. These two series together encourage viewers to study the unique shapes, textures, and marks of individual flowers and, in so doing, to celebrate biodiversity and the life cycle of plants.

Joyce Tenneson is a Maine-based photographer whose work has been exhibited, published, and recognized internationally. She was a recipient of the International Center of Photography’s Infinity Award in 1989. These selections from Flower Portraits and Intimacy are recent gifts to the Fine Arts Gallery’s growing collection of photography; they were generously donated by Melissa and Scott Tannen, both BA ’99, and Ronald Francesco.

Joyce Tenneson—Botanical Beauty is organized by the Vanderbilt University Fine Arts Gallery and curated by Joseph S. Mella, director, and Margaret F. M. Walker, assistant curator.