Desire, Conflict & Exchange Featured Student: Lilia Theobald

Written by Arts Management Intern Diana Kate Karsanow

Lilia Theobald is one of the students from the Art History Capstone course from this past fall which was responsible for the curation of the current exhibit: Desire, Conflict & Exchange Art of 19th Century East Asia & the West. Theobald is a Miami University Dec.2019 graduate from Marshfield, Missouri. She received a Bachelor of Art in Art and Architecture History. While at Miami, Theobald was an active member of the Myaamia Center community and Cobblestone Community Church.

During the semester long capstone course, all students worked collaboratively to select an overall theme, sub-themes, and a wide variety of pieces to be featured. Later on, each student chose an individual piece to highlight and explore more in-depth, researching its history and background and then compiling that information in a catalogue entry. 

Theobald researched the woodblock print titled 10 Views of Mt. Fuji from Edo. She was initially drawn to this work because of the figure’s ornate robes, the use of color, and the disproportion of the woman to her setting. 

Utagawa Kunisada (Toyokuni III) 歌川豊国 (Japanese,1786-1865)
Ten Views of Mt. Fuji from Edo: The Ochanomizu District 江戸富士十景之内:御茶ノ水, after 1844
Woodcut on paper
Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Richard George

Theobald enjoyed the Capstone course and learned many different professional skills. She states “during the Capstone course I learned that the details of history are not always so inaccessible as one might think. Colleges, museums, and online databases have so much to offer if you have the curiosity and the willingness to dig around.” Theobald appreciated the practice in collaboration that the Capstone course gave her and discovered how fun research can be.

Like many of her peers, Theobald’s favorite memory from the Capstone course was the class trip to Boston. She had a particularly special moment at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum when an opera singer serenaded guests as part of a work of participatory art. While in Boston, Theobald recalls feeling like time was melding together as the class studied 19th century East Asian art in old-Boston.

When asked who she would recommend the Capstone course to, Theobald states “in times like these when innovation and self-discovery are our core pursuits, it is very rewarding to pull back and look at how things were, who people were, and how what is came to be. Absolutely any student looking for a broader perspective on life, on reality, could benefit from this course.”

Learn more about Lilia’s piece along with the rest of the exhibition, Desire, Conflict & Exchange, at the exhibition website:

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