Monthly '61 Zoom Programs

Future Events & Zoom Discussions

John Paoletti

“Learn My Language: Strategies of Medici Patronage in 15th Century Florence”

CANCELLED – May be rescheduled.

Over the course of the fifteenth century, four generations of the Medici family in Florence moved from up-and-coming bankers to the richest family in the city and ultimately to its de facto rulers. Their social savvy, acute business skills, and political know-how were critical to their successes. But their visual propaganda – known to most of us as their extraordinary artistic patronage – was central to their success not only with the elites in Florence but also to the population at large. Defining some of the strategies that the Medici and their artists used to disguise their transformation of a republic into an autocracy, and to win the support of the people in the process, is the topic John will investigate with us in this talk.

John taught for 37 years at Wesleyan and was instrumental in founding the University’s History of Art Department. His teaching areas were the arts of the Italian Renaissance and the arts of the twentieth century. He has published in both areas. In the first, he co-authored a textbook, Art in Renaissance Italy, and wrote a monograph on Michelangelo’s David, inspired by an earlier book on that topic by Charles Seymour, Jr, whom some of you may remember as one of the teachers in the Directed Studies introductory History of Art course freshman year. In the modern field, John co-curated, with his students, the first major exhibition of the collection of Sol LeWitt, one of the twentienth century’s most creative artistic thinkers, as well as an exhibition of six contemporary British artists for the Yale Center for British Art. He has been a fellow at Harvard’s Villa I Tatti in Florence and at the Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton. He has written a number of articles on the Medici family in fifteenth-century Florence. John lives in Durham, CT and New York City with his wife of nearly 55 years; they have two daughters and three grandchildren.

For the Zoom Discussion Committee:

Jamie McLane

Thursday – Sunday, October 13-16, 2022 – New Haven Mini Reunion (Ed Cantor, Frosty Smith, Vince Teti)

Previous VideosIf you want to view the Class of 1961 60th reunion videos go to
These are Class Seminars:- May 18, 2022 Mary Habeck, PhD “Putin’s Russia”– April 27, 2022 Michael Auslin, PhD “The China Reckoning”

– March 16, 2022 MacFarmer ’61, Gordon Gibson ’61, Herb Rothschild ’61: “Civil rights in AL, LA, MS in 1960’s &       70’s

– February 15, 2022  Marc Lapadula  Four Films that Changed America

– January 19, 2022  Joe Novitski ’61: Journalism Then and Now/The Changing Oceans
– January 7, 2022 Janelle Kellman: Sea Level Rise Projections and Local Solutions
– November 18, 2021 Bob Budnitz: The current status of nuclear power worldwide, and its prospects for contributing to easing electricity shortages in a climate-constrained world.” Bob Budnitz Talk
April 22 2022

Dear Classmates
As you will recall, our classmate and nuclear engineer, Bob Budnitz, intrigued many of us with presentations last year about the new generation of small, modular, factory certified and manufactured nuclear power plants that he feels can safely help the U.S. and the world transition off petroleum and natural gas.Attached is a popularized article he just wrote with five friends and colleagues, that came out in the April edition of the magazine NUCLEAR ENGINEERING INTERNATIONAL.  read by thousands around the world. Recording:

Access Passcode: $NYN7qa@       Regards, Wilford, Jim, Colin and Jamie

– October 15, 2021 Mary Habeck’s Talk on Polarized America

– September 14, 2021 Jonathan Holloway ’91 PhD: The History of Racism in America