Gardens, both real and represented, played a central role in the development of Roman and Early Christian visions of paradise and how those visions could be expressed in the art and architecture of the Mediterranean world. This talk focuses on what paradise meant to these ancient viewers and patrons, and how the concept of the cultivated Roman garden would eventually be transformed into the iconography of the Garden of Eden, the landscape of a heavenly paradise, and even the Christian church (or in some cases, the Jewish synagogue) as a restored Eden—a paradise once lost but now regained through divine promise. This talk is in conjunction with the anticipated installation of two sixth-century mosaic panels at the Legion of Honor that once formed a larger scene of paradise inside an Early Christian church or chapel.
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.
Nature Tamed and Framed: Reimagining Paradise in the Late Roman and Early Christian World
John A. and Cynthia Fry Gunn Theater, Legion of Honor
Prof. Nathan Dennis
AAC members: free / General: $5.00 suggested donation