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Ancient Color

Pigment bowls. Photo: Sarah Rabe

February 8–May 26, 2019

The Roman world was a colorful place. Although we often associate the Romans with white marble statues, these statues — as well as Roman homes, clothing, and art — were vibrant with color. This exhibition examines colors in the ancient Roman world, how these colors were produced, where they were found, what the Romans thought about them, and how we study them today. We hope that visitors will think about what different colors mean to them, and how these meanings compare to the roles of colors in the ancient Roman world.

Curators: Catherine Person and Caroline Roberts

Read an interview with the exhibition curators.

Read an article about the exhibition by U-M science writer Liz Watson.

Hear Cathy Person's interview on Michigan Radio's Stateside (February 28, 2019).

Read a review of the exhibition on the blog Hyperallergic.

Watch the exhibition opening discussion, "Investigating Ancient Color," with co-curators Cathy Person and Caroline Roberts with discussants Hilary Becker, Gregory Smith, Mark Abbe, and Christina Biscula.