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    Howard E. Wooden Lecture: Imaging the Summer House at Olana

    • Date: April 20, 2017
    • Time: 7:30 PM to 9:00 PM
    • Admission: $40 Dinner; Lecture is free
    • Location: Wichita Art Museum
      1400 W. Museum Blvd., Wichita, KS 67203

    Frederic Edwin Church (1826–1900) was a preeminent painter in the Hudson River School, the 19th-century art movement that raised the significance of landscape painting and especially prized pristine American wilderness. Church was known for his extensive travels, which he expressed on canvas. Church’s greatest masterpiece is Olana, a 250-acre integrated environment in New York’s Hudson River Valley. In the 1886 “Plan of Olana,” a detailed blueprint of Church’s vision for his large-scale landscape, the plan’s specifics are largely accurate. Yet it contains a structure labeled “Summer House” for which there is no documentary evidence. The unfulfilled notion inspired today’s curators at Olana. Landscape curator Mark Prezorski with Jane Smith of the New York architecture firm Smithspace invited 21 contemporary architects and landscape designers to create their own schemes for a summer house at Olana. The 21 extraordinary visions combined for a 2016 exhibition and publication, "Follies, Function & Form: Imagining Olana’s Summer House". In this lecture, Mark Prezorski will discuss Church’s Olana and explore highlights of his recent creative project. Come learn about the creative undertaking that weaves 19th-century design excellence with 21st-century creative imagination. Prezorski advocates for and assists with the restoration and interpretation of Olana's artist-designed landscape and its integral viewshed. Mark works cooperatively at Olana State Historic Site with New York State Parks, preservation organizations and various professionals on landscape planning and restoration projects, exhibitions, viewshed protection efforts, and interpretative programs such as Olana's award-winning "Framing the Viewshed" series. 5:45 pm Social with cash bar; 6:15 pm dinner, 7:30 pm free lecture in the Howard E. Wooden Lecture Hall. Sponsored by Friends of the Wichita Art Museum.