Time and Temporality in Medieval and Early Modern Art (May 18 – 19, 2016, The Open University of Israel, Raanana)

a-1496-copy-of-the-german-calendar-created-by-johannes-von-gmunden-c-1380-1443-copy[1]Call for Papers deadline: Dec 31, 2015

IMAGO – The Israeli Association for Visual Culture of the Middle Ages,
and the Department of Literature, Language and Arts, The Open
University of Israel

The subject of time was frequently encountered in medieval and early
modern thinking and culture, from the notion of eternity as an abiding
“now” outside of time (as defined by Gregory of Nazianzos, in Oratio
39.12, “Christ, the Maker of time . . . is not subject to time”) to the
aphorism Tempus vitam regit (“Time rules life”) engraved on more than
one sundial. Ranging from the discussion of the reception of
Aristotelian and Neoplatonic concepts of time and temporality (Pasquale
Porro, The Medieval Concept of Time) to the analysis of temporality and
anachronism in art (Elizabeth Sears, The Ages of Man: Medieval
Interpretations of the Life Cycle; Alexander Nagel and Christopher
Wood, Anachronic Renaissance), scholars have engaged with the
conceptualization and problematics of notions of time and temporality,
eternity and historicity, continuum and momentarity during the medieval
and early modern periods.

This conference strives to expand the existing body of research by
exploring the inventive nature of forms and ways of reckoning time in
art. We hope papers will consider questions such as: What is the
phenomenology of works of art representing ever-stretching, eternal, or
circular time? How has the idea of linear and progressive historical
time been appropriated or challenged in artistic objects and works?
What is the nature of the artwork when submitted to different regimes
of historical temporality? What are the specific artistic devices that
give form to past appropriation and temporal experience? What is the
nature of the work of art that records the passage of time in nature?
How has the notion of time been used for purposes of patronage and

Proposals for talks may refer (but are not limited) to the following
– Conceptualizing the idea of time and temporality in art
– The aesthetic rendering of time: color/grisaille, inaccurate
measurements, distorted notions of space
– Temporal characteristics of atemporal divinities
– Material culture as a marker of time
– Time, creation and continuity in art
– Reconfiguring the past in the present: biblical time and political
– Liturgical time and divine continuity in art
– Memory as a constructor of historical images
– Motion and time: temporal geographies in Christian, Jewish, and
Islamic visual space
– Spatial time and temporal space
– Visual indications of eternity versus time
– Temporality and identity in art
– Physiognomy, body, and traces of time
– Imaging medical and astrological temporality
– The question of trauma in the interpretation of art
– Use and abuse of the past in visual memory

Keynote Speaker:
Professor Charles Barber, Princeton University

Please send an English abstract of up to 250 words to the conference
organizer, matim@openu.ac.il, before 31 December 2015. Abstracts should
include the applicant’s name, professional affiliation, and a short CV.
Each paper will be limited to a 20-minute presentation, followed by
discussion and questions. All applicants will be notified regarding
acceptance of their proposal by 31 January 2016.

For more information or any further inquiries please contact the
conference chair, Mati Meyer – matim@openu.ac.il.


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