Friday, April 16, 2010

Charles Wilson Peale and the Birth of the American Museum, Coney Island Museum, Tonight!!!

Tonight at Coney! The final lecture in the Congress for Curious People series; tomorrow the symposium--as detailed in this recent post--begins! Hope to see you there!
Charles Wilson Peale and the Birth of the American Museum
An Illustrated Presentation by Samuel Strong Dunlap, PhD, Descendant of Charles Wilson Peale
Date: Friday, April 16th
Time: 7:00 PM
LOCATION: The Coney Island Museum
Long time historian and editor of the Peale Family Papers Dr. Lillian B. Miller (now deceased) described Charles Willson Peale as a true renaissance man. Peale is perhaps best remembered today as the founder of America’s first cabinet-of-curiosity like museum–the Philadelphia Museum (later the Peale Museum)–which housed a diverse collection of botanical, biological, and archaeological specimens and can be viewed in the image above. Famously, Peale’s museum also pioneered the habitat group–or natural history diorama–an art form memorably perfected by such museums as the American Museum of Natural History and Chicago’s Field Museum in the early 20th Century.

In this illustrated lecture, we will learn about Peale the museologist, and examine how his museological work continuously overlap with his inventive, artistic, scientific, literary and exploratory interests. Peale was a friend or acquaintance with most of the military, scientific, diplomatic and foreign individuals who played significant roles in our revolutionary war and the early growth of our democracy.
To find out more about this event and the larger Congress of Curious Peoples--including nightly performances and the epic opening night party--click here. For more about the Congress for Curious People, click here. Click on image or click here to download a hi-res copy of the above broadside. For information about the Coney Island Museum--including address and directions--click here.

Image: The Artist in His Museum (self-portrait, 1822)

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