June 10, 2023

UMW Alumna and Art Historian’s Lecture Cancelled

Dr. Allison M. Stagg

Visiting art historian and University of Mary Washington alumna Dr. Allison M. Stagg’s lecture “James Akin: The First American Caricaturist” has been cancelled due to travel difficulties associated with the weather. The lecture was originally scheduled for Thursday, November 1 at 5 p.m. in Lee Hall, Room 411. The lecture would have been sponsored by the Department of Art and Art History, with funding from the Wendy Shadwell ’63 Program Endowment in Art History.

Thomas Jefferson and Sally Hemings, Charles Peirce Collection, The American Antiquarian Society. Worcester, MA

Her talk would have focused on American artist James Akin, who gained the title as the most notorious caricaturist of his time after he published a satirical caricature of President Thomas Jefferson criticizing his relationship with one of his slaves.  His caricature, boldly entitled “A Philosophic Cock,” along with later caricature designs, went on to influence many of the popular caricaturists of the nineteenth century.

Stagg  has extensive museum experiences curating at prestigious museums such as the Metropolitan Museum and organizing exhibits at the National Portrait Gallery in London and the National Gallery in Washington. Her research on political caricature in the U.S from 1780-1830 has resulted in extensive papers and articles, along with a forthcoming book “The Art of Wit: American Political Caricature.” Stagg has received numerous fellowships and grants from institutions such as the American Philosophical society, Smithsonian American Art Museum and Yale University.


About Brynn Boyer

Brynn Boyer is assistant director of media and public relations and a 2010 graduate of UMW.