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Sculpture Celebration
Jun 21 all-day

The Wadsworth Atheneum’s history of presenting outdoor sculpture on its Hartford grounds dates back nearly 100 years.

Join us as we celebrate a storied past and an exciting present, with the installation of the immense Monolith (Optic) by Conrad Shawcross—as part of his MATRIX 179 project—on the museum’s Main Street lawn. Another public sculpture, the towering 30 (2018) by Sean Scully created in anticipation of his forthcoming Landline exhibition, will follow soon.

These new additions will be situated among other notable sculptural features in Hartford’s downtown, including Tony Smith’s Amaryllis (1965), Alexander Calder’s Stegosaurus (1973) on the Alfred E. Burr Memorial, and Carl Andre’s Stone Field Sculpture (1977) along the north edge of the Center Church’s Ancient Burial Ground. An installation celebrating the enduring legacy of outdoor sculpture in Hartford will be on view adjacent to MATRIX 179.

Schedule of Events

1:30-6pm | Make Music Hartford Day
Hartford-based  musicians kinds play on the front lawn as part of the global Make Music Day event, presented in Hartford by the Greater Hartford Arts Council.

2-4pm | Sculpture Demonstration
With Peter Kirkiles

3-5pm | Outdoor Art Activity
Help build a communal sculpture with Build-It Disks.

4-5pm | Ask About Art: Sculpture
Talk with docents at sculptures inside and outside of the museum.

5-6pm | MATRIX 179 Opening Reception
Be the first to experience Conrad Shawcross’s MATRIX 179 exhibition.

6pm | MATRIX Gallery Talk
Artist Conrad Shawcross discusses MATRIX 179, his first museum exhibition in the Americas.


All outdoor programs plus the MATRIX 179 Opening Reception and Gallery Talk are free and open to the public. Guests heading inside to visit the galleries prior to 4pm will be charged regular museum admission.

IMAGE: Conrad Shawcross, Monolith (Optic), 2016, Stainless and galvanized steel.


Gallery Talk: Exploring 18th-Century America
Jun 27 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Focusing on 18th-century portraiture and design, curator Brandy Culp will lead a gallery talk exploring what objects reveal about life in historic New England.

Gallery talk is free with museum admission. Meet by the Museum Shop.

Have tea with the curator!
Stay after the gallery talk for tea and treats with curator Brandy Culp. Click here for more information and tickets.


Gallery Talk: Dutch Works on Paper
Jul 13 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Curator Oliver Tostmann offers a guided tour of drawings and prints from the Dutch Golden Age featured in the exhibition Fine Prints and Drawings by Rembrandt and His Contemporaries. Free with museum admission; meet by the Museum Shop.


Gallery Talk: The Subconscious and the Divine
Jul 20 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Explore themes of spirituality, religion, and archetypes in modern and contemporary art during a gallery talk with Lauren T. Cross, Youth & Community Programs Manager.

Free with museum admission. Meet by the Museum Shop.


Member Morning: Frederic Church
Aug 3 @ 9:00 am – 11:00 am

Members enjoy a complimentary continental breakfast in the Untitled Bistro, followed by a tour of Frederic Church: A Painter’s Pilgrimage with curator Erin Monroe. Plus, members take 20% off in the Museum Shop during Member Mornings!

Reservations required, please call (860) 838-4070.

This event is open to Wadsworth Atheneum members only. Not a member? Join or renew today!


Gallery Talk: MATRIX 179
Aug 3 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Conrad Shawcross makes majestic sculptures that push the boundaries of physics, technology, and geometry. Join Emily Tall Tremaine Curator of Contemporary Art Patricia Hickson for a discussion of the artist’s MATRIX 179 exhibition and his outdoor sculpture Monolith (Optic) (2016).

Free with museum admission. Meet by the Museum Shop.


Gallery Talk: Frederic Church of Hartford
Aug 9 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Join distinguished art historian Alan Wallach for an in-depth look at the Hudson River School painter Thomas Cole and his student Frederic Church in the permanent collection and the special exhibition Frederic Church: A Painter’s Pilgrimage.

Free with museum admission. Meet by the Museum Shop.


Gallery Talk: All the World’s a Fair
Aug 17 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Explore the history of objects from across the museum that were once displayed at World’s Fairs, with Docent and Tour Programs Manager Angela Parker.

Free with museum admission. Meet by the Museum Shop.