The University of Massachusetts Amherst
HFA - College of Humanities & Fine Arts view HFA submenu

Mark Roskill Graduate Symposium

The Mark Roskill Symposium in Art History is an interdisciplinary symposium organized annually by the graduate students in the Department of the History of Art and Architecture.  Named in honor of Mark Roskill (1933-2000), Roskill was an art historian and scholar of art historiography and criticism who taught at the University of Massachusetts Amherst for over 30 years. Educated at Harvard and Princeton Universities, he began as a specialist in the Italian Renaissance, but continued throughout his career to write widely on then-emerging fields, including photography, English painting, and Cubism.  Among his numerous publications is an influential methodological text, What is Art History? (1976).

2018 Mark Roskill Symposium

Artificial Selections: Art, Natural History and the Taxonomy of the Museum

September 14, 2018
4:00 pm
N211, Integrative Learning Center, UMass Amherst Campus                                                                                                                                                                                 

The 19th annual Mark Roskill Symposium aimed to illuminate the ways in which a shared history of creativity, curiosity, collection, and categorization influences, informs, or problematizes our study of art and science. The keynote talk was given by Assistant Professor of Architecture and History, Elisa Kim of Smith College. Additionally, commentary from panelists Rachel Jirka, College Archivist at Amherst College; Elizabeth Bradley, Program Coordinator at the Emily Dickinson Museum; and Cheryl Harned, a PhD candidate in the Department of History at the University of Massachusetts made for a fascinating discussion.

After the keynote and panel discussion, the event continued with a tour of the exhibition Pau Atela's (Re)Creations and MathStudio at 6:00pm in the galleries of the University Museum of Contemporary Art. This tour was accompanied by refreshments.

This year's symposium would not have been possible without the support of the History of Art & Architecture Department, the UMCA, and our generous speakers. The graduate students also extend great thanks to Big Y and Stop & Shop.



Previous Themes & Keynote Speakers


Strength, Unity, Power: Contemporary Practices in Native Arts

Keynote Speaker: Wendy Red Star, Contemporary Artist


Actively Historic: The House Museum in the 21st Century

Keynote Speaker: Frank Vagnone, co-author of Anarchist's Guide to House Museums 


Plugged In: Art in the Digital Age

Keynote Speaker: Dr. Anne Umland, Museum of Modern Art, New York


In the City: Identity and Urban Spaces

Keynote Speaker: Carmenita Higginbotham, University of Virginia