This is an online event Spokane United States.
Sponsored by: Northwest Museum of Arts and Culture
Constantino Brumidi’s Roman-Style Wall Paintings for the US Capitol
Dr. Elise Friedland (George Washington University, D.C.)
The US Capitol—America’s central federal building—echoes ancient Greece and Rome, not only in its architecture and architectural sculpture, but even in its decorative murals. This talk presents new research on the 1858 fresco cycle in the Senate wing’s Naval Affairs Committee meeting room, painted by Constantino Brumidi, the Italian-born artist, turned American citizen, who is most famous for his Apotheosis of George Washington in the Rotunda. Art historical and archival evidence demonstrate how Brumidi adapted Graeco-Roman motifs from a nineteenth-century publication of newly-discovered Pompeian frescoes to proclaim US naval power in the young nation’s main hall of government.