Wednesday, November 15, 2006

The New George: CSI Techniques Used to Put a New Face on Our First President November 30 and December 1

Chestertown, MD, November 14, 2006— George Washington is the most recognizable of the Founding Fathers. His familiar face is featured on our dollar bill and quarter, and his is the most prominent visage on Mount Rushmore. But do these unsmiling images accurately represent the father of our nation? And what did he look like in his younger years? A team of scientists, historians, and artists set out to find out, and their results may surprise you. The resulting reconstruction of George Washington has been widely featured in the media, including CNN, ABC News, the New York Times, Scientific American, and National Geographic.

Join Washington College's C.V. Starr Center for the Study of the American Experience for an exciting two-day event, "The Three Faces of George," a series of lectures and exhibitions on the forensic and artistic reconstruction of George Washington, on November 30 and December 1. The exhibition will feature images, documents, objects, and 3-D computer models related to the reconstruction. All events are free and open to the public.


5:00 - 7:15 p.m. "The Three Faces of George" exhibition at Larrabee Arts Center. 7:30 p.m.Lecture by Jeffrey H. Schwartz (Professor of History and Anthropology, University of Pittsburgh), "The Three Faces of George: Anatomy," Norman James Theater.


3:00 - 5:15 p.m. "The Three Faces of George" exhibition at Larrabee Arts Center (includes a light reception). 5:30 p.m. Lecture by Ivan Schwartz (founder and Vice President, StudioEIS, New York), "The Three Faces of George: Art," Norman James Theater.

Jeffrey H. Schwartz is a physical anthropologist and one of the world's leading experts on human forensics. Five years ago George Washington's Mount Vernon asked Schwartz to lead an effort to recreate George Washington at three different stages of his life: at 19 (when he was a surveyor), 45 (as a general at Valley Forge), and 57 (when he was sworn in as the first president). Using Washington's dentures, clothing, primary documents and state of the art techniques developed especially for this project, Schwartz and his team uncovered many surprises that shed new light on the father of our nation.

Ivan Schwartz and artists at StudioEIS used the information gathered by Jeffrey Schwartz to create three life-like sculptures of George Washington, which now form the central exhibit in Mount Vernon's brand new Donald W. Reynolds Museum and Education Center. Information contained in written descriptions, paintings, and laser scans of the two most accurate sculptures of George Washington was combined into 3-D computer models created by the Partnership for Research in Spatial Modeling (PRISM) at Arizona State University. This data was brought to life by a team of artists and sculptors, resulting in three stunning lifelike figures that bring people face to face with a much more human, expressive George Washington.

"The Three Faces of George" is sponsored by Washington College's C.V. Starr Center for the Study of the American Experience. Established in 2000 with a grant from the New York-based Starr Foundation, the Starr Center draws on the special historical strengths of Washington College and the Eastern Shore of Maryland. Through educational programs, scholarship, and public outreach, the Starr Center explores the early republic, the rise of democracy, and the manifold ways in which the founding era continues to shape American culture. In partnership with other institutions and with leading scholars and writers, the Center works to promote innovative approaches to the study of history, and to bridge the gaps between historians, contemporary policymakers, and the general public. "The Three Faces of George" is co-sponsored by the Washington College Department of Art, and the Department of Sociology and Anthropology.

For more information, visit the C. V. Starr Center online at

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