4/11/11 - 6/9/13

A Collection of Histories focuses on the story behind two Assyrian bas-reliefs. Created around 880 BCE and excavated in the 1840s, these were among the first works of art to arrive at Williams College in 1851. This exhibition examines how the meaning of the reliefs has changed in different settings over time. By unpacking the layered meaning of these reliefs, one can examine the significance of context, interpretation, and confront an essential question:  Who owns the past?

A Collection of Histories is part of the museum’s reinstallation project, Reflections on a Museum, which takes the museum as its subject, raising questions about the function and meaning of art across time and cultures and the role of museums in shaping understanding.
Selected works