Ancient Art in the Hallie Ford Museum of Art

Willamette University's Hallie Ford Museum of Art and the Portland Art Museum are the only museums in Oregon that regularly exhibit art from the ancient Mediterranean.

Many of our exhibitions are traveling exhibitions, but the museum itself also owns a small study collection of ancient art. We are very grateful to the generous donors that have contributed to the impressive growth of this collection over the last couple of years.

Student Research Opportunities

Many of the objects on display were researched, cataloged, and prepared for exhibition by Willamette students, supervised and assisted by faculty mentors. For example, the Roman coins from the McIntyre collection were cataloged and scanned by Lauren Quinlan '06, an English major with a minor in Art History and Classics; Lauren Saxton, Classics '08, did the same for the Greek coins. The Hermogenian skyphos was researched by Raino Isto '07, an Art History and Politics major with a minor in philosophy.

The Center for Ancient Studies and Archaeology (CASA) at Willamette University offers a paid museum internship for students who want to work with the collection. In the past, students have also successfully applied for Carson Undergraduate Research grants to pursue specific research projects that made use of the HFMA's collections.

Exhibitions of Ancient Art at the HFMA

The HFMA regularly organizes exhibitions of ancient (not just classical) art.

Some major exhibitions from the recent past:

  • 2000: "Best of Both Worlds: Human and Divine Realms in Classical Art"
  • 2002: "In the Fullness of Time: Masterpieces of Egyptian Art from American Collections"
  • 2006: "Ancient Bronzes of the Asian Grasslands from the Arthur M. Sackler Foundation"

Smaller, but just as exciting exhibitions take place in the Study Gallery:

  • 1999: "Perfumes and Potables: Precious Pots from the Ancient Mediterranean" (co-curated by student Christopher Wilson)
  • 2002: "Celebrating Agon: A Panathenaic Prize Amphora from Ancient Athens"
  • 2003: "Creating the Human Form: Figures from Ancient Mexico" (co-curated by student Nancee Jaffe)
  • 2006: "Ancient Glass: Selections from the Richard Brockway Collection"
  • 2008: "Piranesi: Views of Rome"
  • 2009: "From Hestia's Sacred Fire to Christ's Eternal Light: Ancient Lamps from the Bogue Collection, Middle East Studies Center, Portland State University"