Our lecture series at Mosman Art Gallery will run in the morning on the first Wednesday of the month. This year we are offering series of short courses, in which Academy Travel’s expert tour leaders work in pairs to bring to life the extraordinary histories, arts and cultures of different regions of the world.
Our first short course, with Robert Veel (February) and Kathleen Olive (March) explores the birth of modern Italy. While Italy’s history, art and culture from Ancient Rome to the Renaissance is perennially interesting, its later history is equally fascinating, from the birth of archaeology in Bourbon Naples to the trials and tribulations of Napoleonic Italy.
LECTURE 1: The triumph of Naples: art, music and archaeology in the Bourbon Kingdom of Naples, 1734-1806
Today Naples’ reputation is one of chaos, crime and decay. But under the Bourbon monarchs of the 18th century, the city was a great European capital, a centre of enlightenment thought and producing some of Italy’s best fine and decorative arts of the period. Excavations at Pompeii and the Grand Tour bought significant international prestige, the vocal music of the Neapolitan School dominated Europe and the Kingdom of Naples played a strategic role in Mediterranean affairs as a Christian bulwark against the Ottoman Turks and a stage for the Napoleonic Wars. This lecture explores the connections between history, culture and the arts at this significant time for the city.
Robert Veel is a cultural historian with over 20 years’ experience leading tours to Italy, the USA, Scandinavia and Turkey. He has a strong personal interest in the visual arts, architecture and music, and is a founding director of Academy Travel. He worked as a lecturer at the University of Sydney before a long stint as the Assistant Director of the Centre of Continuing education. Robert’s historical and artistic knowledge stretches from the Middle Ages through the early 20th century.
This lecture is free, though RSVP is required through our online booking system below.
Image credit: Circa 50 BC, Romans worshipping at the Temple of Fortune in Pompeii, southern Italy. Produced 02 January, 1754 (Photo by Hulton Archive/Getty Images)