Conference: Invention and Imagination in British Art and Architecture, 600-1500

Invention and Imagination in British Art and Architecture, 600-1500
London, The British Museum, 30 October – 1 November 2014 
A collaborative event organised by the Paul Mellon Centre and The British Museum

© Trustees of the British Museum
© Trustees of the British Museum

This conference will explore the ways in which artists and patrons in Britain devised and introduced new or distinctive imagery, styles and techniques, as well as novel approaches to bringing different media together. It is concerned with the mechanisms of innovation, with inventive and imaginative processes, and with the relations between conventions and individual expression. The conversation will therefore also address the very notions of sameness and difference in medieval art and architecture, and how these may be evaluated and explained historically. 

Topics for discussion can include authorship, creativity, experimentation, envisaging, representation, and regulation by guilds or patrons, as well as casestudies of particular objects, buildings, commissions or practices.

The conference will take place on 30th October – 1st November at The British Museum; it will include collaborations with the museum’s Department of Prehistory & Europe and opportunities to see works from the collection.

List of participants and speakers’ titles & abstracts (A-Z)

Jessica Barker (PhD Candidate : Courtauld Institute of Art)
Effigies of Husband and Wife at Bredon and Lowthorpe: Investigating Unique Iconography on Fourteenth-Century Funerary Sculpture

Paul Binski, Keynote Speaker (Professor of the History of Medieval Art History : University of Cambridge)
Medieval Invention and its Potencies

Kerry Paul Boeye (Assistant Professor of Art History : Loyola University Maryland)
Iconographic Invention in Thirteenth- and early Fourteenth-Century English Psalters

Alexandrina Buchanan (Lecturer in Archive Studies : University of Liverpool)
Gained in Translation: Architectural Drawing and Three-Dimensional Geometry

Andrew Budge (PhD Candidate, Birkbeck College : University of London)
The Fourteenth rebuilding of the Collegiate Church of St Mary Warwick: Risk-taking Innovation or Simple Fashion Statement?

James Alexander Cameron (PhD Candidate : Courtauld Institute of Art)
The Englishness of English Sedilla

Kristen Collins (Associate Curator, Department of Manuscripts : Getty Museum)
Resonance and Reuse: The Reinvention of a Late-Romanesque Vita Christi in Fifteenth-Century East Anglia

Lloyd De Beer (Project Curator, Late Medieval Collections : The British Museum)
The Key of David and the Temple of Justice: An Analysis of the Chichester Seal Matrix

Veronica Decker (Art History Department : University of Vienna)
The Patronage of William of Wykeham: Imagination and Experimentation in Fourteenth-Century Art and Architecture

Emily Guerry (Junior Research Fellow in History of Art, Merton College : University of Oxford)
Picturing the Saints: Relics, Patronage and the “Westminster Court Style” in Gothic Cult Painting

Jack Hartnell (Postdoctoral Fellow, Max Planck Institute for the History of Science, Berlin/ Victoria and Albert Museum)
The Wound Man and the English Medical Imagination

James Hillson (PhD Candidate : University of York)
Iterative Invention: Delayed Design in Dynastic Gothic at St Stephen’s Chapel Westminster and Norwich Cathedral Cloister

Aden Kumler, Keynote Speaker (Associate Professor of Art History and the College : University of Chicago)
Envisioning Art as Process in Medieval Britain

Helen Lunnon (Tutor in Art History : University of East Anglia)
Inventio Porticus

Julian Luxford (Reader in Art History : University of St Andrews)
Inscribed Churches in Late Medieval England

John Munns (Lecturer in the History of Medieval Art : University of Cambridge)
Seeing Things: from Art to Apparition in the High Middle Ages

Laura Slater (Post Doctoral Researcher and Teaching Assistant, Department of Art History : University of York)
Inventing and Imagining Place: Jerusalems in England and the Case of Westminster

Roger Stalley (Professor Emeritus of the History of Art : Trinity College)
Reason and Imagination in English Gothic Architecture

For further information, see the conference website:

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