The Capitol Dome

2018 Dome 55.1

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W ith this issue, The Capitol Dome casts its spotlight on the fasci- nating but little-known backstories of some of the Capitol's most signifi- cant paintings. The authors' own back- grounds are as varied as the artwork they write about. . . . . . . James McElhinney's insight is driven by the empathy of a fellow painter. His attempt to see what Seth Eastman saw reveals the multiple meanings of seem- ingly inert landscapes. . . . . . Anna Marley, curator at the Penn- sylvania Academy of Fine Arts, is informed by a trained academic's pro- fessional interest . . . . . . and James Head—a lawyer by day—is doggedly captivated by the simple "Affair with Beauty" he finds in the work of Howard Chandler Christy. Editing their individual articles has reminded me how much the Capitol's artistic legacy is enriched by sharing a variety of perspectives. Stay tuned for the upcoming issue of The Capitol Dome, which will continue to explore how the Capitol's unique place in the public eye is the result of a variety of artists working across time, themes, and media. How Congress, the Capitol, and the Library of Congress have been rep- resented in movies is the subject of Michael Canning's article "Through a Dome Darkly: The Capitol as Symbol, Touchstone, and Admonition in Ameri- can Film." John Busch, a historian of technology, provides the intriguing geo- political context behind an overlooked vignette within one of the most widely recognized paintings in the Capitol. Paula Murphy identifies the various strands of Irish influence in the Capitol's nineteenth- and early twentieth-century sculptures. And with Daniel Peart's article on John Quincy Adams's rela- tionship to House Speakers during his post-presidential tenure as representative (1831–48), The Capitol Dome resumes its periodic scholarship on Congress' political culture, institutional history, and remarkable personalities. William C . diGiacomantonio F rom the Editor's D esk:

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