Category Archives: Workshops

Workshop: Arts and Court Cultures in the Iberian World (1400-1650)

horizontalWorkshop: Arts and Court Cultures in the Iberian World (1400-1650), Real Colegio Complutense at Harvard University (RCC Conference Room, 26 Trowbridge St., Cambridge MA), April 28, 2017

Visual strategies of legitimization became increasingly important for
Iberian monarchies during the late medieval and early modern periods.
Mediterranean dynastic, diplomatic, and military endeavors called for
effective propaganda, both in the metropolis and in viceregal
territories, such as southern Italy. Such efforts include architecture,
both ephemeral and permanent, the decoration of palaces, court
portraiture, and historiography. The advent of a Monarchia Hispanica
under Habsburg rule required careful elaborations of national,
religious, racial, and gender identities, across a mosaic of
multilingual and multiethnic populations. This workshop aims to
highlight some of these strategies, and to create a forum for
discussion of further research avenues, under the guidance of scholars
from Spanish and American universities. It is made possible thanks to
the collaboration of the Real Colegio Complutense at Harvard
University, and the University of Valencia, with additional support
from the Fulbright Commission and the BBVA Foundation.

09.00
Registration

09.15
Welcome & opening remarks

09.30
Viceregal Palaces in the Dominions of the Crown of Aragon: Charting a
Mediterranean Architecture
Prof. Mercedes Gómez-Ferrer (Universitat de València)

10.45
Icons of Dynastic Authority. Sofonisba Anguissola at Her Majesty’s
Service
Prof. Jorge Sebastián (Universitat de València)

12.00
Lunch

13.30
Facing the Infidel Other: Visual Battle Narratives and Royal Entries by
Spanish Habsburg Monarchs
Dr. Borja Franco (UNED, Madrid)

14.45
The Triumph of Tunis in Viceregal Palermo, Messina, and Naples
Prof. Cristelle Baskins (Tufts University)

16.00
Final remarks and roundtable discussion
with Prof. Felipe Pereda (Harvard University).

17.00
End of workshop

Each lecture to be followed by Q & A

Locating Becket

How can the life and cult of Thomas Becket be traced through material culture? This was the question at the heart of the ‘Locating Becket’ workshop, sponsored by CHASE, and held at the British Library, British Museum and Courtauld Institute of Art on Tuesday 6th December 2016. Curators and scholars gathered first at the British Library to examine a number of manuscripts connected to Becket’s life and cult, including Cotton Claudius B II, with the earliest representation of Becket’s martyrdom (below). This fairly stable iconography  could be followed in later manuscripts, including the (very bloody) Huth Psalter (Add MS 38116 ), a 15th-century Book of Hours from Rouen (Harley 1251), and in two seals attached to Ch. 17353 and Harley Ch. 44 C 33.

martyrdom-thomas-becket-a80136-48

Becket’s martyrdom, from Alan of Tewkesbury’s letters, British Library Cotton MS Claudius B II, late 12th century. Image in the public domain.

An early collection of Becket’s miracles was also examined (Egerton MS 2818), as well as the early fourteenth-century ‘memorandum book’  of Prior Henry Eastry (Cotton Galba E. iv), which includes an inventory of Prior Eastry’s interventions, an extensive inventory of the sacristy, and an inventory of the library. Finally, we looked at the early fifteenth-century customary of Becket’s shrine (Additional 59616), with extensive instructions  for the celebration of his feast days, which is bound together with two copies of his lives which seem to have been kept at the shrine and read to pilgrims.

The afternoon was spent looking at the British Museum’s extraordinary collection of pilgrims’ badges, ampullae, reliquaries and other objects related to Becket, including the impression of the 15th-century seal of the Mercers Company (below), which shows Becket on a ship, returning from exile.

becket

Impression of a Mercers’ company seal matrix, after 1462

 

Below is a full list of the objects consulted at the British Museum:

Badges
1836,0610.32, ca. 1320-1450, Becket bust, purchased from Cureton.

1855,0804.70, ca. 1250-1350, Becket contained within a T, found Thames 1845, previous owner Chaffers, then Cureton.

1855,0724.5, head of Becket between two raised swords contained within an octofoil frame, ca. 1320-1450. Purchased from William Edwards.

1856,0701.2036, ca. 1300-1350, bust of Becket between a nine point star, inscription SANCTVS.THOMAS, found 22nd August 1850, purchased Charles Roach Smith.

1856,0701.2031 and 2032, two badges in the form of Becket’s bust, ca. 1320-1450, purchased Charles Roach Smith.

1856,0701.2039, ca. 1350-1400, four embossed fleur-de-lis in the form of a quatrefoil around a central boss, inscription SANTE.THOMA.OR.P.M., purchased Charles Roach Smith, previous collection Edward Wigan.

1868,0904.39, badge in the form of a kind of ship known as a cog, ca.1350-1400, donated by Franks.

2001,0702.1, Becket’s bust reliquary, ca. 1320-1375, found Billingsgate.

OA.1817, decorative sword sheath (referring to the relic of the sword tip) with Fitz Urse coat of arms, ca. 1350-1450.

2001,0702.2, Becket riding  a peacock, ca. 1250-1350, found Thames Exchange.

dec-2016-bm-handling-session

Ampullae

1891,0418.21, ampulla with circular openwork tracery. The obverse of the ampulla is embossed with the standing figure of St Thomas Becket in a bishop’s mitre and chasuble, with an equal-armed cross standing out from his breast. The reverse bears a representation of his martyrdom with Becket kneeling in the centre, inscription OPTIMUS EGRORVM.MEDICVS.FIT.THOMA.BONORVM, ‘May Thomas be the best doctor of the worthy sick’, ca. 1220-1420.

1896,0501.69, the front of the ampulla  depicts the standing figure of St Thomas Becket in mitre and chasuble,  making a gesture of benediction and holding a crosier. The reverse shows the  scene of his martyrdom with one knight faced by a kneeling Becket. The  frame is filled with openwork decoration of symmetrical sexfoil and fleur-de- lis motifs and a representation of the front- and back-view of a seated  Becket, depicted in episcopal garb, enclosed within a roundel. Inscription, REGENAKDVS.FILIVS HVRS:THOMAS:MARTIRIVM:FECE:FR., ‘Reginald Fitz Urse brought to pass the Martyrdom of Thomas’, donated by Franks.

2001,0702.3, chasse shaped ampulla, ca. 1250-1350, found Billingsgate.

2001,0702.6, ship-shaped ampulla (referring to Becket’s return from exile) with a high relief representation of Becket, ?ca. 1170-1250, found Billingsgate.

 

Seals

1880,0624.1, impression of Mercer’s company seal matrix, showing a  half-figure of St Thomas of Canterbury in a ship, inscriptions, ‘sigillu : anglicor in flandria : brabancia : hollandria: zeeladia : m’cat’ and ‘s. thomas catuar’, after 1462, found Harrow.

1913,1105.3, Langdon Priory seal matrices. On the obverse is a Virgin and Child seated in a canopied niche on a corbel. On the reverse is a scene of the  Martyrdom of St Thomas in Canterbury Cathedral. 13th century. Inscriptions, ‘SIGILL’ . COMMVNE MONASTERII: ECCE: DE MARIE: DE: LANGEDON’ and ‘CAVSA: DOMVS: XPI: MORTEM: SIC: IRTVLIT ISTI’.

1981,1103.1, Seal-matrix: Warden of Greyfriars at Canterbury. Inscription, ‘SIG GARDIANI FRUM MINORU CANTUARIE’. Ca. 1330-1350.

casket-interior

Reliquaries and other objects

AF.2765, Reliquary pendant showing on the observes John the Baptist and possibly Thomas Becket on the reverse. Inscription, ‘A MON + dERREYNE’. Late 15th century, found Devizes.

1878,1101.3, Chasse depicting the martyrdom of Becket, ca. 1210, donated by Meyrick, previous collection Douce.

1852,0327.1, Henry of Blois plaques, made possibly in England, ca. 1150-1171. Inscriptions:
+ MVNERA GRATA DEO PREMISSVS VERNA FIGVRAT. ANGELVS AD  CELVM RAPIAT POST DONA DATOREM;. NE TAMEN ACCELERET NE  SVSCITET ANGLIA LVCTVS, CVI PXA VEL BELLVM MOTVSVE  QVIESVE PER ILLUM (= ‘The aforementioned slave shapes gifts pleasing to God.  May the angel take  the giver to Heaven after his gifts, but not just yet, lest England groan for it,  since on him it depends for peace or war, agitation or rest.’) + ARS AVRO GEMMISQ (UE) PRIOR, PRIOR OMNIBVS AVTOR.  DONA  DAT HENRICVS VIVVS IN ERE DEO, MENTE PAREM MVSIS (ET)  MARCO VOCE PRIOREM.  FAME VIRIS, MORES CONCILIANT  SUPERIS.  Also inscribed within the scene, HENRICUS EPISCOP  (‘Art comes before gold and gems, the author before everything.  Henry, alive in bronze, gives gifts to God.  Henry, whose fame commends him to  men, whose character commends him to the heavens, a man equal in mind to  the Muses and in eloquence higher than Marcus [that is, Cicero].’)

1854,0411.2, enamelled casket depicting the murder of Becket, 13th century, purchased from William Forrest.

1890,0809.1, alabaster panel showing the murder of Thomas Becket,

 

Prints and Drawings

1973,0512.3.2, Ecclesiae Anglicanae Trophaea, Plate 2: the Trinity surrounded by angels in the upper section; two bishops in  brocaded cloaks in the lower section, after Niccolò Circignani, etching.

1973,0512.3.25, Ecclesiae Anglicanae Trophaea, Plate 25: the martyrdom of St Thomas, archbishop of Canterbury, the saint  kneeling before the altar, about to be martyred by a group of soldiers with  swords; scene separated from the background by a balustrade with balusters;  St Thomas named archbishop by Henry II at far left; saint kneeling before  Pope Alexander III seated on a throne, accompanied by two male attendants  at far right, etching.

illustration-to-bowyers-edition-of-humes-history-of-england-1793

Illustration to Bowyer’s edition of Hume’s History of England, 1793

1853,1210.383, Illustration to Bowyer’s edition of Hume’s History of England; the  assassination of Thomas Becket, wrestled to his knees by a gang of four  knights, one raising a bludgeon above him, his mitre and staff fallen at left.   1793, etching and engraving.

1856,0607.15, Portrait of Thomas Becket, head and shoulders to left, with hands joined in  prayer, wearing ecclesiastical robes, a sword wedged in his skull.  1647, etching.

The day concluded with a lecture at The Courtauld by Cynthia Hahn, ‘Like life-giving seeds: The Multiplication and Dissemination of Relics and Reliquaries‘.

This event was made possible through a CHASE Network Development Grant, with additional support from the University of Kent and The Courtauld.

Call for Applications to Attend: An Interdisciplinary Workshop with Christiane Gruber (Copenhagen, 27th March 2017)

ascension-narratives

 

 

 

 

 

 

MEDIEVAL ASCENSION NARRATIVES IN ISLAMIC AND EUROPEAN TRADITIONS

CALL FOR APPLICATIONS

An Interdisciplinary Workshop with Christiane Gruber (University of Michigan) Organized by the Centre for Medieval Literature and the David Collection

Copenhagen, David Collection, 27 March 2017

Deadline for applications:  Saturday 10 December 2016

A one-day workshop on medieval ascension narratives, from al-Sarai’s Nahj al-Faradis to the Liber Scale Machometi and Dante’s Commedia, will be held at the David Collection, Kronprinsessegade 30, Copenhagen, on Monday 27 March 2017. It will be followed by a public lecture on Tuesday 28 March 2017 by Prof. Christiane Gruber (University of Michigan), who has written widely on Islamic book arts, ascension images and narratives, and depictions of the Prophet Muhammad. This workshop—conducted by Prof. Gruber and an interdisciplinary team of art and literary historians from the Centre for Medieval Literature and the David Collection—will allow for a sustained analysis of the changing values conferred upon ascension texts and images in cross-cultural contexts. We will focus on their circulation in Islamic lands and Europe, since the notion of rising into the heavens was imagined in prose, verse, manuscript paintings, and wall frescoes from Ilkhanid Persia to Medieval Castile and Renaissance Italy. Ascension narratives served as a powerful tool for expressing and exploring theological, philosophical, spiritual, and soteriological concerns in literature and art, within both Christian and Muslim traditions. For these reasons, this workshop seeks to open new avenues and approaches, asking, in particular, how can we conceptualize narratives that travel and are adapted, reformed, and reimagined across various temporal and geographical domains. Additionally, how can we explore questions of world (or trans-imperial) literature through medieval ascension narratives? Is this possible through a sustained engagement with both text and image, positioning the artistic with the literary and vice versa?

Scholars from Denmark and abroad will have the unprecedented opportunity to examine some of the extraordinary manuscripts and precious objects preserved in the David Collection during a private visit led by the museum’s curators and Prof. Gruber.

The workshop is sponsored by the Centre for Medieval Literature in cooperation with the David Collection. Participation is free, and places available are limited to 15 in number. Participants will have to bear costs for travel and accommodation themselves.

Postgraduate students and early career scholars willing to become more familiar with questions of cross-cultural engagement, text and image issues, and medieval narratives are particularly encouraged to apply regardless of their disciplinary expertise. Please send motivation letters (max. 1000 words) explaining your research interests and reasons for applying, along with a brief CV, to either Shazia Jagot (jagot@sdu.dk) or Rosa M. Rodríguez Porto (rosa.rodriguezporto@york.ac.uk) by Saturday 10 December 2016. Applicants will be notified of the decision by Monday, 18 December 2016.

Intensive course: ‘Rome as a Palimpsest,’ Rome, April 3-9, 2017

rome_colosseum_aerial_viewIntensive course: Rome as a Palimpsest, Rome, April 3-9, 2017.
Collaborative course organised by the Bibliotheca Hertziana –
Max-Planck-Institut für Kunstgeschichte, des Deutschen Archäologischen
Instituts und des Deutschen Historischen Instituts in Rom.
Deadline for Applications: October 15, 2016

Das Deutsche Archäologische Institut, Abteilung Rom, die Bibliotheca
Hertziana – Max-Planck-Institut für Kunstgeschichte, und das Deutsche
Historische Institut in Rom bieten vom 3. bis zum 9. April 2017 einen
Studienkurs an. Der Intensivkurs unter der Leitung von
WissenschaftlerInnen der beteiligten Institute richtet sich
insbesondere an fortgeschrittene Studierende der Klassischen
Archäologie, der Christlichen Archäologie, der historischen
Bauforschung, der Kunstgeschichte sowie der Geschichtswissenschaften
vom Mittelalter bis zur Zeitgeschichte.
Ausgangspunkt des Kurses ist das Bild von Rom als “Palimpsest”, d.h.
Rom als exemplarischer Ort des Umgangs mit Vergangenheit, des
Auslöschens und Vergessens, der Neuentdeckung, Wiederbelebung und
vielfachen Aneignung von Geschichte, der Überlagerung und des
Ineinandergreifens historischer Epochen. Diese Prozesse des Um- und
Überschreibens, der Inszenierung und Zitierung sollen mit
unterschiedlichen fachlichen Zugangsweisen an ausgewählten Orten und
baulichen Ensembles, vom Kapitol über das Forum Romanum bis hin zum
EUR-Viertel und dem Tiberufer mit dem in diesem Jahr angebrachten Fries
von William Kentridge von der römischen Kaiserzeit bis heute untersucht
werden.
Von den KursteilnehmerInnen wird eine intensive Einarbeitung sowie
aktive Mitarbeit – unter anderem die Übernahme eines Referates inkl.
der fristgerechten Vorbereitung von Themenpapieren und Unterlagen –
erwartet.
Die Zahl der Teilnehmenden ist auf fünfzehn Personen beschränkt. Für
die Gruppe der AltertumswissenschaftlerInnen (Archäologen und
historische Bauforscher) stehen ebenso wie für KunsthistorikerInnen und
HistorikerInnen jeweils 5 Plätze zur Verfügung. Die Kosten für die
Reise bis zu einem Betrag von 150 Euro und Übernachtung werden ebenso
wie Eintritte von den veranstaltenden Instituten übernommen. Die An-
und Abreise ist von den Kursteilnehmern selbst zu organisieren.

Requirements: Voraussetzung für die Teilnahme: abgeschlossener M.A. in einem der für
den Kurs relevanten Fächer bzw. M.A.-Studium in der Endphase.

How to apply: Bewerbungen mit kurzem Motivationsschreiben (max. eine Seite),
Lebenslauf, ggf. Kopie des letzten Studienabschlusses und Skizze eines
laufenden Forschungsvorhabens (bitte nur in elektronischer Form) an:
Rossi@biblhertz.it

International Workshop: Relics @ the Lab, KIK-IRPA, Brussels, October 27-28 2016.

relics to deleteInternational Workshop: Relics @ the Lab, KIK-IRPA, Brussels, October 27-28 2016.
Over the past decade the scientific interest in relics and kindred artifacts has grown enormously. Without any doubt relics as well as relic shrines and associated objects have played a prominent role in European history since the introduction of Christianity. While in the past primary, secondary as well as tertiary relics were merely studied in relation to their religious and (art) historical background, recently the rise of a more scientific and archaeological approach is noticed. Nowadays researchers become more interested in the origin and nature of these sacred objects and ask different questions:
  • What information can relics give us about the people buried in the shrines? Who were these people? What do we know about the way they lived? When did they live? What about diseases and other disabilities?
  • What information can be retrieved from the objects kept with the relics and made of textile, wood, stone or metal. What was their purpose? Are they contemporaneous to the relic or are they older or younger additions? Why would they have been added? How should we preserve them?
Scientists of many different disciplines are involved in the study of relics and kindred artefacts, but till now there was no real forum for these people to exchange ideas and discuss methods. Therefore the Royal Institute for Cultural Heritage (KIK-IRPA, Brussels) is organising a two-day workshop on the scientific study of relics.
During this meeting we want to give analytical scientists, textile specialists, conservators, anthropologists, historical researchers, people involved in 3D-reconstruction as well as radiocarbon dating specialists a forum to exchange ideas about relics.

A full programme can be found here
Tickets: The registration fee is €75. This includes two lunches, coffee, tea and refreshments during the breaks and a book with the summaries of all the oral presentations and posters. Click here to register.

New Exhibition and Events: Opus Anglicanum, Masterpieces of English Medieval Embroidery, V&A Museum, 1 October 2016 – 5 February 2017

opus anglicanum to deleteNew Exhibition: Opus Anglicanum: Masterpieces of English Medieval Embroidery, Victoria and Albert Museum, 1 October 2016 – 5 February 2017

From the 12th to the 15th centuries, England enjoyed an international reputation for the quality of its luxury embroideries, and were frequently referred to as ‘Opus Anglicanum’ (English work). Often featuring complex imagery, and ambitious in their scale and intricacy, they were sought after by kings, queens, popes and cardinals across Europe. This exhibition is the first opportunity in over half a century to see an outstanding range of surviving examples in one place. Paintings, illuminated manuscripts, metalwork and stained glass will be shown alongside, to explore the world within which these exquisite works were created.

Luxury embroideries were made by professional craftsmen and women living in the City of London, some of whom we can still identify by name. London was a hub for commerce, and the embroiderers formed part of an international mercantile network. The rare survivals of this extraordinary period of English art are today scattered across Europe and North America. Some of the embroideries have not been seen in Britain since they were produced.

Book now: vam.ac.uk/opus


 

lossy-page1-1024px-web2c_grevens_sc3a4ngkammare-_detalj2c_grevens_sc3a4ng_-_skoklosters_slott_-_88043-tifEnglish Medieval Embroidery Unpicked, day course, The Lydia & Manfred Gorvy Lecture Theatre @V&A Museum, Saturday 12 November 2016

STUDY DAY: This study day explores the world of England’s Medieval luxury embroideries, known as Opus Anglicanum. We will examine their materials, techniques and design; the patrons and artists involved; and the extraordinary images depicted on them.

During the later Middle Ages, England enjoyed an international reputation for its luxury embroideries, produced for Europe’s greatest patrons including kings, queens, cardinals and popes. This study day will put embroideries in the exhibition Opus Anglicanum: Masters of Medieval Embroidery under the microscope, examining their materials, techniques and design; the patrons and artists involved; and exploring the extraordinary images depicted on them. Leading experts in the field will discuss these questions in what promises to be a fascinating afternoon.

With exhibition curators Glyn Davies and Sally Dormer.

14.00 – 16.30, Saturday 12 November 2016

£35 full, £30 concessions, £15 students


 20160719161621_170Opus Anglicanum: An Introduction to Silk & Gold Embroidery, Workshop, Art Studio @V&A Museum, Saturday 12 November, 10.30 – 16.30

WORKSHOP: Learn the secrets behind the beautiful embroidery techniques of Opus Anglicanum as seen in this exhibition. Sarah will guide you step by step through split stitch fillings, surface couching and underside couching with gold threads on an Opus Anglicanum inspired piece of your own, in this one day introduction to medieval embroidery. All materials included.

Saturday 12 November, 10.30 – 16.30

£92.00, £73.60 concessions

(Lead Image: The Steeple Aston Cope 1330-40 (detail). The Rector and Churchwardens of St Peter and St Paul, Steeple Aston, Oxfordshire. On long term loan to the Victoria and Albert Museum, London.)