Greetings from West 86th Street, where Bard Graduate Center’s fall semester is under way. I am pleased to welcome three new PhD students and twenty-one new MAs. During the two weeks leading up to the start of classes, they met with faculty members; immersed themselves in writing, digital humanities, and foreign language studies and exams; and visited the Brooklyn Museum to tour Africa Fashion with co-curator Annissa Malvoisin (BGC / Brooklyn Museum Postdoctoral Fellow in the Arts of Africa), Cooper Hewitt to tour A Dark, A Light, A Bright: The Designs of Dorothy Liebes with co-curator Alexa Griffith Winton (BGC MA ’03), and Kykuit, the Rockefellers’ Classical Revival style villa in Sleepy Hollow, New York. I invite you to learn more about the new class in this issue of the newsletter.

In the Gallery, we’re in the midst of installing the fall exhibition, SIGHTLINES on Peace, Power & Prestige: Metal Arts of Africa. I urge you to put it on your fall calendar. Curator and BGC associate professor Drew Thompson’s innovative approach to showcasing historic African metal objects alongside works by thirteen leading contemporary artists including Radcliffe Bailey, Lubaina Himid, and Nari Ward, has already caught the attention of the press. In its annual Fall Arts Preview, the New York Times recommended SIGHTLINES, calling it “an ingenious remix of a show.” Hyperallergic, Ebony, Elle Décor, and Essence have also put it on their “must see” lists for the fall. Emanuel Admassu and Jen Wood of the architecture firm AD–WO have created the extraordinary exhibition design, which allows visitors to create their own “sightlines” among historic and contemporary works of art. I look forward to welcoming you to the Gallery to engage with this highly anticipated exhibition; tickets are available now.

In conjunction with SIGHTLINES and the Brooklyn Museum’s Sakimatwemtwe: A Century of Reflection on the Arts of Africa, Annissa Malvoisin and Drew Thompson are organizing the two-day symposium, Exhibiting Africa, which will take place October 19–20 and feature Andrea Achi, Antawan Byrd, and Sandrine Colard along with many other important curators and scholars. The ideas that the symposium generates will likely influence our field’s approach to collecting and displaying the arts of Africa in the years to come. I am proud that BGC is hosting this important convening.

Exhibiting Africa is just one of many wonderful events that BGC will offer this fall. I hope you will peruse the offerings in the Wednesdays @ BGC series curated by BGC’s Department of Public Humanities + Research. The lectures, discussions, films, performances, and other events in this series sold out quickly last season, so please purchase your tickets early to avoid disappointment.

This issue also includes stories about student Rachel Salem-Wiseman’s research trip to study ruffs in England and assistant professor Meredith Linn’s experience teaching the historical archaeology of New York City in the BGC Summer School for Undergraduates, as well as a behind-the-scenes look at the making of the popular television program, Antiques Roadshow, through the eyes of its BGC connections: Nancy Druckman, chair of BGC’s board of directors; PhD candidate Martina D’Amato; and William DeGregorio (MA ’12, PhD ’21), newly named associate curator at the Met’s Costume Institute.

Lastly, BGC’s membership program offers a wealth of benefits, including members-only events, complimentary admission to exhibitions, and discounts on BGC publications and merchandise. If you haven’t yet become a BGC member, consider joining today.

I look forward to seeing you on 86th Street soon.

Susan WeberFounder and Director