Pictures from an Expedition: Aesthetics of Cartographic Exploration in the Americas

A Symposium at the Newberry Library, Chicago, June 20-21, 2013

This symposium is made possible through support from the Terra Foundation for American Art

The Newberry Library’s Hermon Dunlap Smith Center for the History of Cartography is now taking registrations for “Pictures from an Expedition:  Aesthetics of Cartographic Exploration in the Americas.” The two-day symposium, organized by Dr. Ernesto Capello (Macalester College) and Dr. Julia Rosenbaum (Bard College), is supported in part by a grant from the Terra Foundation for American Art. “Pictures from an Expedition” will bring together national and international art historians, historians, and geographers to present and discuss research on the visual material produced during nineteenth-century explorations in the Americas.
The nineteenth century represents a high point in mapping expeditions at the hemispheric level as nations expanded into hitherto “unknown” territories. These expeditions produced vast troves of visual and artistic material. Alongside maps, these included sketches, drawings, paintings, photographs, and tourist brochures. The symposium focuses attention on maps as aesthetic objects produced in dialogue with other aspects of nineteenth-century visual culture. Papers by prominent and emerging scholars place the historical development of American cartographic aesthetics into hemispheric relief in order to investigate commonalities and distinctions in both the United States and Latin America.
No registration fee is required to attend the symposiumHowever, persons wishing to attend must register in advance by contacting Kristin Emery (emeryk@newberry.org312-255-3657) or Jim Akerman (akermanj@newberry.org312-255-3523). Registrations will be accommodated on a first-come, first-serve basis.

The Newberry Library is located at 60 W. Walton Street, Chicago, IL 60610. No public parking is available onsite. Information about parking and public transportation may be found on the Newberry’s website at: No accommodations have been reserved for out-of-town guests. Information about local accommodations and dining in the area may be found at:

Presenters and topics

James R. Akerman, Director, Smith Center for the History of Cartography, the Newberry Library, “Science, Wonder, and Tourism in the Early Mapping of Yellowstone National Park”
Nancy Appelbaum, Associate Professor of History, Binghamton University, “Seeing the National Territory through the Eyes of Others:  The Colombian Chorographic Commission in Casanare”
Ernesto Capello, Associate Professor of History, Macalester College. “The Trace of Geodetic Exploration: Between Science and Art in Polar and Equatorial Expeditions”
Magali Carrera, Chancellor Professor of Art History, University of Massachusetts—Dartmouth, “A French Officer’s Album: Imperial Seeing in Mexico”
Marci Clark, Doctoral Candidate in Art History, Graduate Center, CUNY, “Frederick S. Dellenbaugh – Framing and ‘Breaking the Wilderness’”
Imre Demhardt, Virginia and Jenkins Garret Chair in the History of Cartography and Greater Southwestern Studies at the University of Texas at Arlington, “‘Truer to Nature:’ Aestheticizing the Early Cartography of the Colorado River”
Richard Francaviglia, Professor Emeritus, University of Texas, Arlington, “Practical and Beautiful: The Aesthetics of Nineteenth Century Mormon Mapmaking”
Kenneth Haltman, H. Russell Pitman Professor of Art History, University of Oklahoma, “Cartography and Representation in the Age of Vernacular Landscape: Pictorial Metaphor in Stephen Long’s Map of the Country Drained by the Mississippi (1822)”
Joni Kinsey, Professor of Art History, University of Iowa, “Triangulating the View: The Allied Arts of the Great Surveys”
Carla Lois, Professor of Geography, Universidad de Buenos Aires & CONICET, “Scientific Vision: Maps, Photographs and Other Visual Devices in the Diplomatic Dispute over the Andes as a Natural Border (1900)”
Katherine Morrissey, Associate Professor of History, University of Arizona, “Mapping the Border: Photographs and Monuments along the US/Mexico and Mexico/ Guatemala Boundaries”
Amanda Murphyao, Carleton University, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, “To hell and gone:” Cartography, Cartoons, and Caricatures of Alaska, 1867-1903
Julia Rosenbaum, Associate Professor of Art History, Bard College, “Frederic Edwin Church’s Olana as a Performative Expedition”
Scott Manning Stevens, Director, McNickle Center, Newberry Library, “Mapping Removal”
Jason Weems, Assistant Professor, American Art, University of California, Riverside, “Sight in Sediment: Stratigraphy, History and Landscape Representation in the Americas, circa 1877”
Mary Peterson Zundo, Doctoral Candidate in Art History, University of Illinois, “Cutting the Vista: James Alden and the Art of the Forty-Ninth Parallel, 1857-1861”
Matthew Edney, Osher Professor in the History of Cartography and Professor of Geography-Anthropology and American & New England Studies, University of Southern Maine and Director of the History of Cartography Project, University of Wisconsin, Madison
Susan Schulten, Professor of U.S. History, University of Denver
Katherine Manthorne, Professor of Art History, the Graduate Center, CUNY
Barbara E. Mundy, Associate Professor of Art History (Latin America), Fordham University
Andrew Walker, Director, Amon Carter Museum of American Art, Fort Worth, Texas

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