‘Longing for What is Lost’: Research and curation of a digital exhibition on Johann Joachim Winckelmann’s legacy in the European reception of classical art and LGBTQ history

The student will work with two supervisors to research and curate an international, collaborative digital exhibition on Europeana Collections (

Department: Classics

Supervised by: Dr Katherine Harloe and Professor Amy Smith

The Placement Project

2017/18 marks the 300th and 250th anniversaries respectively of the birth and death of Johann Joachim Winckelmann, a promoter of neoclassical taste in art and architecture who is celebrated as the 'father' of classical archaeology and art history and as a significant gay cultural figure. The UROP student will work with the supervisors to create a digital exhibition concerning Winckelmann’s legacy within LGBTQ cultural history in relation to modern admiration for classical Greece and Rome and the appreciation, collection, imitation and display of ancient objects. The exhibition will be hosted on Europeana Collections, a digital portal that collates EU cultural heritage (including UoR’s Ure Museum, objects from which will be included in the display). This project will promote the University collections internationally. This exhibition will contribute to an REF 2021 impact case study emerging from the supervisors’ research on Winckelmann and history of collections. Both serve on the Winckelmann-Gesellschaft’s international committee, which is planning a programme of events in 2017/18 in celebration of Winckelmann ( This digital exhibition will contribute to this programme, receiving international publicity. During the placement period both supervisors will be collaborating with archivists at UoR and Christ Church, Oxford, on Winckelmann-themed static exhibitions. In addition to developing digital curation experience, the UROP student will thus have the opportunity to gain an inside perspective on planning and curation processes for traditional displays. S/he is also welcome to attend research workshops on Winckelmann in London (June) and Reading (September), some contributions to which are on LGBTQ themes.


The project will have two principal stages, each lasting approximately three weeks: Stage 1: Research Key tasks: Preliminary research on J.J. Winckelmann and his legacy within LGBTQ cultural history; familiarisation with Europeana Collections digital platform and critical study of previous digital exhibitions; identification of relevant archives & objects available on Europeana; proposition of a group of relevant objects with thematic unity and an overall narrative. Stage 2: Revision and refinement of interpretation Key tasks: Working closely with the supervisors to broaden or narrow this group, as necessary; drafting of exhibition text; iteratively reworking the draft, with a view to presenting a final proposal to Europeana; working with technical staff at Europeana to deliver the exhibition online.

Skills, knowledge and experience required

Essential: Academic research skills appropriate to advanced undergraduate level; some background knowledge in ancient and/or modern European intellectual/cultural history, the history of collections and/or LGBTQ history; basic IT skills including researching portals, social media & other online resources; ability to write clear and fluent English; editorial skills. Desirable: Past experience or demonstrable interest in museum curation, art histories, and one or more modern foreign languages (especially French, German or Italian).

Skills which will be developed during the placement

Museum skills including working with collections and archives, researching collections history, curating and writing pithy museum text; communication skills including writing for digital media.

Place of Work

Ure Museum Office, Department of Classics (39 HumSS)

Hours of Work

9:30am-4:30pm (negotiable)

Approximate Start and End Dates (not fixed)

Monday 03 July 2017 - Friday 11 August 2017

How to Apply

Submit CV & letter of interest to and

Return to Placements List

Page navigation