About: Suzanne Blier and Frances Terpak

Suzanne Blier I'm Allen Whitehill Clowes Professor of Fine Arts and Professor of African and African American Studies at Harvard University and a 2014 Getty Scholar. Frances Terpak I'm a curator at the Getty Research Institute. My areas of focus include early modern optical devices, and 19th-century photography in China, Algeria, Persia, and the Ottoman empire. - See more at: http://blogs.getty.edu/iris/author/fterpak/#sthash.ziIk6Leh.dpuf

Posts by Suzanne Blier and Frances Terpak

Posted in Exhibitions and Installations, Getty Research Institute, Photographs, Film, and Video

Photographs of Africa from the Late 1800s

Women from Zanzibar, plate 40 / Edouard Foa
Women from Zanzibar, 1893, Edouard Foà. Albumen print in Views of Africa: Zanzibar et Côte-Quiloa-Dar es Salam-Tanga-Somalis, plate 40. Mount: 9 x 11 1/4 in. The Getty Research Institute, 93.R.114.1.2

Six albums by French explorer Edouard Foà reveal African society at the turn of the 20th century. More»

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      #ThyCaptionBe: Warnings to the Rich & Powerful

      You captioned this detail. And we’re revealing the full story now.

      It would be awesome if this was Medieval hangman, or a really awkward frat party, but it’s actually the result of a one-letter swap gone wrong in a book about the fates of the rich. 

      Here’s the full story:

      You sometimes regret what pops out unexpectedly when you open your mouth, but in this case, even the fish must have been quite surprised when a wooly lamb burst forth. 

      The stories in this text by Giovanni Boccaccio warn of the terrible fate that often awaits the rich and powerful. He uses here the example of King Polycrates, who tossed a ring into a river, hoping for good luck, and found it later in the mouth of a fish. 

      Someone got confused, though, and instead of a ring (in French, annel), what came out instead was a lamb (agnel). Apparently, neither the ring nor the lamb worked because the king was later hanged (background).

      #ThyCaptionBe is a celebration of modern interpretations of medieval aesthetics. You guess what the heck is going on, then we myth-bust.

      08/31/15

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