Do you love art and reading? The Members Book Club is the perfect forum to discuss exciting literature related to the art world in a fun and relaxed environment.

The Members Book Club meets several times a year in the Museum’s Education Center. Each session includes a presentation by a guest speaker followed by small group discussions led by library staff. Light refreshments are served. Book Club attendees may register for a single session or the entire year. Each session is $10 per person and is limited to Museum Members only. Register now for one or more sessions.

For more information or to register by phone, please call 314.655.5335.   

Empress of Art

The Empress of Art: Catherine the Great and the Transformation of Russia
By Susan Jaques
Saturday, May 5, 10:30 am

In May, the Members Book Club will welcome author Susan Jaques for a discussion of her book, The Empress of Art: Catherine the Great and the Transformation of Russia. A biography of the mighty Catherine the Great, who rose from seemingly innocent beginnings to become one of the most powerful people in the world. There are few women in history more fascinating than Catherine, and for the first time, Susan Jaques brings her to life through the prism of art.

Red Land, Black Land

Red Land, Black Land: Daily Life in Ancient Egypt
By Barbara Mertz

Saturday, August 4, 10:30 am

The Members Book Club will explore the civilization that has inspired countless films, books, pieces of art, myths, and dreams. Red Land, Black Land: Daily Life in Ancient Egypt brings a buried civilization to vivid life, taking the readers closer than ever before to the people of a great lost culture so different from – yet so surprisingly similar to – our own. Lisa Cakmak, the Museum’s associate curator of ancient art, will present at this exciting Members Book session.


China Collectors 


The China Collectors: America's Century-Long Hunt for Asian Art Treasures
By Karl E. Meyer and Shareen Blair Brysac

Saturday, September 22, 10:30 am

The Members Book Club will travel to the Far East with The China Collectors: America’s Century-Long Hunt for Asian Art Treasures. Thanks to Salem sea captains, Gilded Age millionaires, curators on horseback and missionaries gone native, North American museums now possess the greatest collections of Chinese art outside of East Asia itself. Ann Burroughs, head of engagement and interpretation, will discuss this century-long treasure hunt in China from the Opium Wars and the Boxer Rebellion to Mao Zedong’s 1949 ascent.    


Eye of the Sixties

Eye of the Sixties: Richard Bellamy and the Transformation of Modern Art
By Judith Stein
Saturday, November 17, 10:30 am

The last Members Book Club in 2018 will discuss the Eye of the Sixties: Richard Bellamy and the Transformation of Modern Art. Based on decades of research and on hundreds of interviews with Bellamy’s artists, friends, colleagues, and lovers, Judith Stein rescues the legacy of the elusive art dealer and tells the story of a counterculture that became the mainstream. Gretchen Wagner, A.W. Mellon Fellow for prints, drawings, and photographs, will join us for this last session of the Members Book Club.



Register now for one or more sessions

> Return to Member Events 

Past Book Club Selections

Visual Intelligence: Sharpen Your Perception, Change Your Life
by Amy E. Herman, November 2017
Peacock and Vine: On William Morris and Mariano Fortuny
by A.S. Byatt, August 2017
The White Mirror
by Elsa Hart, June 2017 
Collecting for the Public: Works that made a difference
Essays for Peter Hecht, April 2017 
Au Bonheur des Dames
by Émile Zola, March 2017 
The Great Wave: Gilded Age Misfits, Japanese Eccentrics, and the Opening of Old Japan
by Christopher Benfey, December 2016

The Complete Stories
by Flannery O'Connor, October 2016
Mad Enchantment: Claude Monet and the Painting of the Water Lilies
by Ross King, September 2016 
Shocking Paris
by Stanley Meisler, July 2016

The Executioner's Race
by Andrew Bynom, April 2016

by Lily King, January 2016

The Self-Portrait
by James Hall, December 2015

33 Artists in 3 Acts
by Sarah Thornton, September 2015

by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie,
      July 2015

Mary Coin: A Novel
by Marisa Silver, April 2015

The Boston Raphael
by Belinda Rathbone, January 2015

At The King's Pleasure
by Kate Emerson, November 2014

The Lost Carving: A Journey to the Heart of Making
by David Esterly, September 2014

The Millionaire and the Mummies:
Theodore Davis's Gilded Age in the Valley of the Kings
by John M. Adams, May 2014

The Judgment of Paris:
The Revolutionary Decade That Gave the World Impressionism
by Ross King, March 2014

Farewell to Manzanar
by Jeanne Wakatsuki Houston and
     James D. Houston, February 2014

The Masterpiece
by Emile Zola, November 2013
The Painter's Chair:
George Washington and the Making of American Art
by Hugh Howard, October 2013

Rome: A Cultural, Visual, and Personal History
by Robert Hughes, July 2013
Thus Was Adonis Murdered
by Sarah Caudwell, April 2013

Short Nights of the Shadow Catcher:
The Epic Life and Immortal Photographs
of Edward Curtis
by Timothy Egan, February 2013

Cleopatra: A Life
by Stacey Schiff, November 2012
The Other Rembrandt: A Novel
by Alex Connor, September 2012
The Paper Garden: An Artist Begins
Her Life's Work at 72
by Molly Peacock, May 2012
Clara and Mr. Tiffany: A Novel
by Susan Vreeland, March 2o12
Killer Stuff and Tons of Money
by Maureen Stanton, February 2012

Loving Frank: A Novel
by Nancy Horan, November 2011
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