Friday, April 6, 2007

Metropolitan Museum of Art Curator Explores 'History in Houses,' April 19

Chestertown, MD, April 6, 2007 — One of the leading luminaries at New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art will discuss one of America's great historic houses, when the C.V. Starr Center for the Study of the American Experience and the Department of Art present "History in Houses: The Cornelius Wynkoop House, 1767-2007." Gary Tinterow, Engelhard Curator at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, will deliver the lecture at Washington College's Casey Academic Center Forum on Thursday, April 19, at 4:30 p.m.

Tinterow bought the remarkably well preserved Hudson Valley house in 1992. Since then, he has devoted considerable time to researching the life of the original builder, a wealthy young man named Cornelius Evert Wynkoop, in an attempt to understand the function of the house and its context in the community during the last quarter of the 18th century.

Tinterow will convey the fruits of his research with an illustrated lecture that will examine the house in detail and relate it to other examples of 18th-century domestic architecture in New York's Hudson Valley.

As Engelhard Curator, Tinterow is in charge of the Metropolitan Museum of Art's Department of 19th-Century, Modern and Contemporary Art. He has organized many acclaimed exhibitions that have traveled to major museums around the world; his exhibitions rank among the best-attended shows ever mounted at the Metropolitan. He conceived and executed the reorganization of the highly acclaimed 19th-Century European Paintings Galleries and was responsible for the expansion of the galleries for 19th- and early 20th-century painting. He also has worked to acquire several significant paintings for the Metropolitan's collections.

In 2001 Tinterow co-founded the Association of Art Museum Curators (AAMC), created to support the role of curators in shaping the mission of art museums in North America.

Author of numerous scholarly articles, Tinterow has lectured at museums around the world and is the recipient of many professional awards and honors, including France's Légion d'Honneur, which he received in 2000.

Educated at Brandeis and Harvard, Tinterow has been curator and catalogue author of an impressive series of international exhibitions, including "Manet/Velazquez: The French Taste for Spanish Painting," "Portraits by Ingres: Image of an Epoch," "The Origins of Impressionism" and "The Private Collection of Edgar Degas."

Since acquiring Wynkoop House, Tinterow has become a leading authority on the property—one of salient Early American architectural/historical significance.

Wynkoop House, the finest gambrel-roofed stone house of the Colonial Period extant in New York State, was built for Cornelius Evert Wynkoop in 1767. The house epitomizes the Dutch Colonial style that would become so widely imitated in the 20th century.

When it was built, Wynkoop House was by far the largest house in Marbletown and the area's chief landmark.

On November 15, 1782, General George Washington favored Wynkoop House with a visit. According to tradition, Washington slept in the bedroom on the southwest corner of the second floor.

Admission to "History in Houses: The Cornelius Wynkoop House, 1767-2007" is free and open to the public. This is the first in an occasional series of "History in Houses" lectures to be presented by the C.V. Starr Center.

Established in 2000 with a grant from the New York-based Starr Foundation, the C.V. Starr Center draws on the special historical strengths of Washington College and colonial Chestertown to explore the early republic, the rise of democracy, and the manifold ways in which the founding era continues to shape American culture, through innovative educational programs, scholarship and public outreach. In addition to the Presidential Fellows Program, the Starr Center also offers a range of special programs and extracurricular opportunities to Washington College students, including the Comegys Bight Fellowships and Frederick Douglass Fellowships, as well as weekend road trips and summer programs. For more information, visit

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