Ancient Art Council

Ancient Art Department

Ancient Art Council
Legion of Honor

100 34th Avenue, Lincoln Park
San Francisco, CA 94121

Ancient Roman sculptors had a knack for combining heterogeneous models of the past into eclectic new compositions. Mars and Venus as a couple are perhaps the most famous of those creations. In the second century AD, their divine bodies—based on Classical Greek sculptures—were used for contemporary double portraits of husbands and wives. How, exactly, did the love affair between the two gods become an acceptable representation of marriage and concordia, the Roman concept of marital harmony? This lecture explores a question that has puzzled scholars since the 1600s: What did Roman viewers, and what shall we, make of these odd—or not so odd—couples?

About Programs at the Ancient Art Council

Programs are varied and include such activities as lectures by noted archaeologists, museum curators, and ancient art historians; exclusive tours of the Museum’s permanent collection and special exhibitions; fund-raising events; and travel programs to ancient sites and other museums. Members also receive invitations from related organizations to attend lectures ad exhibition openings. Your annual membership dues and contributions will assist in furthering the Ancient Art collection at the Fine Arts Museums.



Couples in Roman Sculpture: Myth, History, and Propaganda

John A. and Cynthia Fry Gunn Theater, Legion of Honor

Dr. Jens Daehner

AAC member/free; general/$5 donation suggested


Explore the Ancient Art Council: Upcoming Events


"If you build it, they will come": the construction and care of Nemean hero worship


Plagues, Pestilence, and Pandemics: Disease in El Hibeh


Round Table: Ancient Democracy, the Present Moment, and the Future of a Political Ideal


Rehearsed Reading of Euripides' Bacchae

Thank you for helping us acquire our first Egyptian royal portrait—a carved limestone relief of Ptolemy I Soter

Ancient Art Council supports Antiquities at the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.



Last Supper in Pompeii: From the Table to the Grave

This exhibition reveals how, before Mount Vesuvius blew up in AD 79 and rocked the Bay of Naples, people in Pompeii and nearby farms and villages were engaged in typical daily activities, many of which revolved around food and drink.

Dates TBD