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November 9, 2010

Paintings and Prints Are Worth a Thousand Words

Laura Barry, Colonial Williamsburg associate curator of prints, maps and paintings, explores the role of 18th-century prints and other graphics in revealing the day-to-day lives of early Americans during A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words: Using Prints to Re-create the Past. The program will be held at 7 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 18 at Colonial Williamsburg’s DeWitt Wallace Decorative Arts Museum.

Barry assists with the research and exhibition of the Foundation’s painted and printed collections in Colonial Williamsburg’s Historic Area exhibition buildings, the DeWitt Wallace Decorative Arts Museum and the Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Museum.

She joined the museum staff in 1994 to research the life and art of 19th-century folk artist Edward Hicks, the topic of her undergraduate thesis. In 1997, she began work with the prints, maps and wallpaper collection and was promoted to associate curator in 1999. Since 2006, she has added decorative and folk painting, drawing and sculpture to her responsibilities.

Barry earned her bachelor’s in art history from the College of Wooster in Wooster, Ohio, and her master’s in American Studies at the College of William and Mary. She was a contributing author to “The Kingdoms of Edward Hicks” and “Flying Free: Twentieth Century Self-Taught Art from the Collection of Ellin and Baron Gordon” and has authored several articles on 18th-century prints. She is editor of the Friends of Colonial Williamsburg Collections donor society newsletter and currently is working on an exhibition featuring Williamsburg in the Revolution.

A Colonial Williamsburg admissions ticket, museum pass or Good Neighbor Card provides access to this lecture.

For each lecture, the Wallace Café in the soaring central atrium court of the museum is open for business until 6:30 p.m. to purchase light fare, a glass of wine or a cold beer.

The Nov. 18 presentation is part of an 11-month series celebrating the 25th anniversary of the Wallace Museum. Programs are scheduled through December 2010.

The final hour-long presentation is at 7 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 16. Amanda Rosner, Colonial Williamsburg assistant curator of historic interiors and household accessories, examines Christmas decorations in the house museum and reveals what is fact and what is fancy during the program, Decking the Halls: The Evolution of Holiday Decoration at Historic Sites.

Programs and exhibitions at The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation’s DeWitt Wallace Decorative Arts Museum are supported by the DeWitt Wallace Endowment Fund.

The Art Museums of Colonial Williamsburg include the Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Museum and the DeWitt Wallace Decorative Arts Museum. The Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Museum is home to the nation’s premier collection of American folk art, with more than 5,000 folk art objects made during the 18th, 19th and 20th centuries. The DeWitt Wallace Decorative Arts Museum exhibits the best in British and American decorative arts from 1670–1830.

The Art Museums of Colonial Williamsburg are located at the intersection of Francis and South Henry Streets in Williamsburg, Va., and are entered through the Public Hospital of 1773. Museum hours are 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily. For museum program information, telephone (757) 220-7724.

The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation is the not-for-profit educational and cultural organization that preserves and operates the restored 18th-century Revolutionary capital of Virginia as a town-sized living history museum, telling the inspirational stories of our nation’s founding men and women. Williamsburg is located in Virginia’s Tidewater region, 20 minutes from Newport News, within an hour’s drive of Richmond and Norfolk, and 150 miles south of Washington, D.C., off Interstate 64. For more information about Colonial Williamsburg, call 1-800-HISTORY or visit Colonial Williamsburg’s website at

Media Contact:
Penna Rogers
(757) 220-7121