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The Wisle family in front of their octagonal house in Custer County, Nebraska, 1904

Photographer: Solomon Butcher, Nebraska State Historical Society

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‘House Proud’ exhibit opening reception at Kennedy Museum of Art is Friday

Exhibit walk by Dr. Samuel Dodd starts at 5:15 p.m.


The Ohio University Kennedy Museum of Art will host an opening reception for the “House Proud, Portraits of the American Home” exhibition, from 6 to 8 p.m. Friday, Sept. 29. The exhibit will be on display through Dec. 17.

House Proud explores the visual culture of homeownership and homemaking within the United States.

Selected materials will include photographs from the KMA collection, archival photographs, historical film and television footage and a new photo series commissioned specifically for the exhibition.

Together, these works offer the first survey of “house proud” portraits, wherein families and individuals position their bodies and belongings within the architecture of their homes.

In tracing examples of this pictorial trope through the 19th to 21st centuries and from Appalachian homesteads to presidential penthouses, House Proud considers how domestic spaces have been central to American ideals of identity, taste and success.

KMA guest curator Dr. Samuel Dodd, an Ohio University visiting assistant professor of art history, will host an exhibit walk and talk from 5:15 to 6 p.m. before the reception.

Dodd is an architectural and media historian whose research focuses on the circulation of design practices and theories within American culture, exploring issues of taste making, public engagement and new media.

Other associated upcoming KMA programs include:

  • “Show and Tell,” a public talk with Cassidy Brauner, will take place 12:10 to 12:50 p.m. Friday, Oct. 6
  • “Watermelons, Horses, & Sod Houses: Reading Homestead Photographs,” a public talk with Dr. Samuel Dodd, will take place 12:10 to 12:50 p.m. Friday, Nov. 17

Free refreshments will be available. The Kennedy Museum of Art, which is free and open to the public, is open seven days a week. For more information, visit www.ohio.edu/museum.