AU Press Releases

Ceramic history lecture to focus on Greek vases in age of tragedy

Richard Neer will be the featured speaker for the 12th Annual Dorothy Wilson Perkins Ceramic History Lecture sponsored by the Schein-Joseph International Museum of Ceramic Art at Alfred University on Thursday, Nov. 11 at 4:30 p.m. in Nevins Theater, Powell Campus Center.

Neer is the David B. and Clara E. Stern Professor of Humanities, Art and History and the College at the University of Chicago, where he is also an affiliate of the departments of Classics and Cinema & Media Studies.

The title of his talk is “Greek Vases: Wine and Humor in the Age of Tragedy.” The lecture will focus on the fineware pottery produced in ancient Athens during the 400s BCE — the age of Pericles and the Parthenon, Socrates and Sophocles. The talk will detail the ways in which the drunken disorderly world of the drinking party is reflected in the images on Athenian pottery.

Dorothy Wilson Perkins was born in 1917. She enrolled in Alfred University taking courses at the NYS College of Ceramics, where she completed her bachelor of fine arts degree with honors in 1939. Offered a scholarship at the Ohio State University (OSU), Perkins took courses with Arthur E. Baggs, who had been a former student of Charles Fergus Binns at AU. She received her master of arts degree from OSU in 1940.

Perkins then moved to Providence, RI and spent 15 years teaching at the Rhode Island School of Design, where she made the majority of her creative pottery. At the same time, she also wrote numerous articles for “Ceramic Age” and “Ceramics Monthly,” produced pottery for exhibition here and abroad, and taught two consecutive summers for Charles Harder at AU. In 1956 Perkins earned a doctorate from OSU.

Her ceramic art can be found in numerous collections, including those at OSU and the Schein-Joseph International Museum of Ceramic Art at AU. Perkins died Aug. 17, 1996. Her memory will live on through those who knew her, her ceramic pieces, and through the Dorothy Wilson Perkins Ceramic History Lecture which is conducted each fall.