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Seth Pevnick

Greek and Roman Art

Curator of Greek and Roman Art, Chair of Art of the Ancient Mediterranean, Africa, and Europe to 1800, and Decorative Art

Seth Pevnick joined the museum as curator of Greek and Roman art in March 2019, taking responsibility for researching, presenting, and augmenting the collection of art of the ancient Mediterranean world, including the art of Egypt and the ancient Near East. In September 2022, he was promoted to chair of European art from classical antiquity to 1800. Previously, he worked at the Tampa Museum of Art, serving as the Richard E. Perry Curator of Greek and Roman Art (2009–19) as well as chief curator (2013–19) and acting director (July 2014–April 2015). While in Tampa, Pevnick curated numerous exhibitions, including the traveling exhibition Poseidon and the Sea: Myth, Cult, and Daily Life (2014–15) and Patricia Cronin, Aphrodite, and the Lure of Antiquity: Conversations with the Collection (2018). 

In addition to the Poseidon and the Sea catalogue, Pevnick has written for other museum exhibition catalogues as well as academic journals, conference proceedings, and archaeological excavation reports, particularly on ancient Greek vase painting. His most recent scholarly publication, “Lykos Kalos: Beyond Youthful Beauty,” appeared in Hesperia: The Journal of the American School of Classical Studies at Athens in 2021. He has also contributed to the CMA Thinker blog and Cleveland Art, the CMA members magazine, and spoken widely at museums, universities, and conferences. In 2022, he wrote new gallery labels for all the CMA’s Greek vases while planning for a future reinstallation of the Greek and Roman art galleries. His upcoming exhibition, tentatively titled Named and Unnamed, will explore a major paradox of ancient Greek art—the names that survive in signatures on artworks rarely align with the names of the artists most celebrated in ancient literature. 

Prior to his employment at Tampa, Pevnick served as curatorial assistant in the Department of Antiquities at the J. Paul Getty Museum, Getty Villa, from 2008 to 2009. He holds a PhD in archaeology from the University of California, Los Angeles, and a BA in classical archaeology from Dartmouth College. The recipient of fellowships at the American School of Classical Studies at Athens (2006–7) and the American Academy in Rome (2019), Pevnick is a committee member of the Archaeological Institute of America, a board member of the Cleveland Archaeological Society, and an adjunct art history professor at Case Western Reserve University.

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