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Virtual Student Guide Tour: The Bind of Beauty, with Sophia Mautz

In this comical photomontage, a young woman, dressed in a blue sweater and dark gray pants, stands in front of a gray wall. Her arms are raised to the right as if she is holding a painting of a Japanese scene. The painting depicts an aerial view of a corner of a house with multiple screened windows and green borders. In the screened doorway, a man dressed in a traditional white kimono is seated. A red garment spills out from underneath him onto the deck. To the right, a large cherry tree, with branches radiating outward, is covered in white blossoms. Above, brown clouds move by.
One of the works Sophia Mautz will discuss is Under the Cherry Blossoms, an early 16th-century illustration for The Tale of Genji by Tosa Mitsunobu. Photomontage courtesy of Alexis Boo ’22.


Sophia Mautz ’21 examines the tension between nature and artifice in constructions of feminine beauty. She will lead an interactive discussion of Under the Cherry Blossoms, an early 16th-century illustration for The Tale of Genji by Tosa Mitsunobu, and two sculptures by women: Daphne (1930) by Renée Sintenis and Nature Study (1986) by Louise Bourgeois.

This interactive tour will take place online via Zoom. To join, click the following link: (free admission; no pre-registration required).

Virtual Student Guide Tours take place every Thursday at 8pm and every Saturday at 11am on Zoom. Each tour is unique and offers a chance to explore the collections of the Harvard Art Museums through the eyes of a Harvard student. Drop in and join the conversation!

For instructions on how to join a meeting on Zoom, click here. For general questions about Student Guide Tours, email

This program is supported by the Ho Family Student Guide Fund.

The Ho Family Student Guide Program at the Harvard Art Museums trains students to develop original, research-based tours of the collections. These tours, designed and led by Harvard undergraduates from a range of academic disciplines, focus on objects chosen by each Student Guide and offer a unique, thematic view into the collections.

The Harvard Art Museums are committed to accessibility for all visitors. For anyone requiring accessibility accommodations for our programs, please contact us at at least 48 hours in advance.