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Hood Museum of Art
Dartmouth College
Hanover, NH 03755

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Esmé Thompson

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The Alchemy of Design

April 9 through May 29, 2011

Esmé Thompson envelops her creative enterprise in the colors and complexities to be found in the visual “surfaces” of textiles, illuminated manuscripts, and the botanical world. Her art also embraces the work of other painters whom she admires, particularly Renaissance masters and the remarkably unique paintings French artist Edouard Vuillard (1868–1940). This exhibition of twenty-eight paintings and collages, plus a recent work in glazed ceramic, focuses on the last five to six years of her creative practice and demonstrates the full flowering of her interest in design and pattern. It is also a tribute to the artist’s career as a professor in Dartmouth College’s Studio Art Department, where she has worked for the last three decades.

Organized by the Hood Museum of Art and generously supported by Kate and Yaz Krehbiel, Class of 1991, Thayer 1992, and the Bernard R. Siskind 1955 Fund.

Podcast interview with Thompson about her exhibition at the museum (via Dartmouth's Public Affairs Office)

Press release

Exhibition Publication


Currently available from the Museum Shop.


Esmé Thompson, "Life as an Artist"

Professor of Studio Art Esmé Thompson talks about her experience teaching students at Dartmouth College, and shares some details about her upcoming work, which was influenced by a trip to Morocco.

Exhibition Panoramas

Click here to view gallery panoramas of The Alchemy of Design.

Related Events

13 April, Wednesdays, 6:30–8:00 P.M.
The Alchemy of Design

Explore the exhibition Esmé Thompson: The Alchemy of Design in this discussion-based workshop.Thompson’s paintings, collages, drawings, and wall installations are inspired by Renaissance portraits, Moroccan textiles, wall painting, ceramics, medieval illuminated manuscripts, and biological illustrations and photographs. In the studio, we’ll experiment with pattern and design to create wall installations of our own. Participation is limited. Call (603) 646-1469 by April 11 to register.

15 April, Friday, 5:30 P.M.
Arthur M. Loew Auditorium
Esmé Thompson: The Alchemy of Design
Esmé Thompson, artist and professor of studio art, Dartmouth College. A reception will follow in Kim Gallery.

16 April, Saturday, 2:00 P.M.
Esmé Thompson: The Alchemy of Design

4 May, Tuesday, 5:30 P.M.
Artist Esmé Thompson

Open to all member levels.

21 May, Saturday, 2:00 P.M.
Esmé Thompson: The Alchemy of Design

24 May, Tuesday, 12:30 P.M.
The Art of Esmé Thompson

Essi Rönkkö, Assistant Curator for Special Projects, Hood Museum of Art

Last Updated: 7/23/12