Tag Archives: Books

CFP: Byzantine Heritage in the History and Spiritual Culture of Ukraine, 19 – 22 October 2017, Monastery of St Theodore Studites, Rome, Italy

Culture of Ukraine, October 19 – 22, 2017, Monastery of St Theodore Studites,
Rome, Italy.
Deadline: 25th August 2017.
The International Conference Byzantine heritage in the history and spiritual culture of
Ukraine aims to become a platform for the sharing of knowledge. The conference will
involve the systematic discussion and promotion of the following themes:
  • Byzantine spiritual heritage in the history of Ukraine-Rus’ and Eastern churches of the Kievan tradition
  • the role and influence of the Byzantine Empire in the formation of Ukrainian national identity
  • spiritual culture
  • publishing and literature
  • art
  • theological and philosophical thought
  • religious traditions
and more.
Suggested topics for the conference:
1. Byzantium – Kievan Rus: historical, spiritual and cultural interconnection.
2. Byzantine hesychasm in the tradition of monasticism, and in the culture and
spiritual life of Ukraine-Rus’.
3. The Byzantine Fathers of the Church and the distribution of their books in
4. Byzantine heritage in literature, art, theological and philosophical
thought, in liturgical science and in the church tradition of Ukraine.
5. “Studion” and its role in reviving the Byzantine Stoudite tradition of the Greek
Catholic Church (contribution by Metropolitan Andrey Sheptytsky and Patriarch
Josyph Slipyj).
6. Byzantine heritage in the traditions of modern Ukrainian monasticism.
7. The current state of Byzantines in Ukraine.
Working languages of the conference: Ukrainian, English, Italian.
The organizers will provide free accommodation and meals for participants during
the conference. There are plans to publish the results of the conference in the
scientific collection Sofia of Kiev: Byzantium. Russia. Ukraine.
The conference will allow for full-time and part-time participation.
How to apply:

The submission should indicate title of paper and author information (name,
surname, academic degree, title or position, address, home or mobile phone, email,

The e-mail address of the Organizing Committee is tnu-pres@ukr.net


medieval ParisWALKING TOUR OF THE MEDIEVAL BOOK TRADE OF PARIS, led by Christopher de Hamel and Sandra Hindman

Saturday April 8, 2017 Walk at 10 AM

Advanced registration essential: Tel +33 (0)1 42 60 15 58 info@lesenluminures.com http://www.lesenluminures.com
The group will meet outside the west front of Notre-Dame, where the outlines of the former medieval street of the rue Neuve-Notre-Dame are marked on the paving. Right here was the absolute dawn of the book trade in Europe. Here the earliest professional booksellers had their shops from around 1200, together with parchment-sellers, illuminators, scribes and book-binders. The locations of their shops can often be located precisely from the medieval tax records. We will conjure up the businesses in this little street of Emery d’Orléans, libraire (d.1246); Nicholas Lombard, libraire 1248-76; and others. We will stand where the husband and wife team of Richard and Jeanne de Montbaston illuminated romances in the fourteenth century. We see the precise spots where the celebrated Jacques de Besançon illuminated manuscripts in 1472-94 and where Simon Vostre sold luxurious printed books in 1486-1518. We will cross the Petit Pont and walk up the rue St-Jacques, towards the site of the great Dominican convent and publishers of the works of Thomas Aquinas in the thirteenth century.

We will pass the locations of the shops of the booksellers Alain Spinefort, 1491-1506, Claude Jaumar 1493-1500, and others, turning right up the rue de la Parcheminerie, where many medieval scribes and illuminators had houses, including Ameline de Maffliers, a female illuminator in 1292-98, and from there into the little rue Erembourg de Brie (later rue des Enlumineurs). Many famous illuminators worked precisely here, including Honoré 1289-1312, Jean Pucelle (d.1334) and Jean le Noir (d. c.1380), illuminator of the Hours of Jeanne de Navarre and the Petites Heures of the duc de Berry. Finally, we will retrace our steps, back across the Ile de la Cité, over the Pont Notre-Dame, where the illuminator Maître François had his business on the left-hand side of the bridge in 1455-74, as later did the bookseller and printer Antoine Vérard (d.1513). We eventually reach Les Enluminures in the rue Jean-Jacques Rousseau, the libraire principal of manuscripts in modern Paris, for a light lunch and an opportunity to see and buy original manuscripts illuminated and sold in the city in the Middle Ages.

Advanced registration essential: Tel +33 (0)1 42 60 15 58 or info@lesenluminures.com


Some good book offers from Brepols

On the occasion of Black Friday Brepols offersyou these 20 books for only € 20 each.

Place your order now as this offer is only valid from 25 to 27 November 2016 and only applicable for orders placed on the brepols webshop.


The Vatican Necropoles
Rome’s City of the Dead

  1. Liverani, G. Spinola, P. Zander

€ 95 > € 20


This is the first published summary of the entire complex of the great necropoles of Rome, which were situated on Vatican Hill.

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Interdisciplinary Reflections on the Medieval Sermon

Edited by G. Donavin, C. J. Nederman, R. Utz

Series:  Disputatio

€ 60 > € 20


This anthology of essays reveals how sermons impact upon a range of disciplines, and how the methodologies of different disciplines inform sermons.

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Elites and their Residences, 1500-1900

Edited by P. Janssens, J. Dunne

Series:  Studies in European Urban History (1100-1800)

€ 65 > € 20


Focussing on the most basic aspect of urban living, this collection is concerned with the study of the places and types of residence of urban elites.

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Les actes comme expression du pouvoir au Haut Moyen Age
Actes de la Table Ronde de Nancy

Edited by M.-J. Gasse-Grandjean, B.-M. Tock

Series: Atelier de recherche sur les textes médiévaux

€ 50 > € 20


Actes de la Table Ronde de Nancy, 26-27 novembre 1999

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Illuminating the Law
Illuminated Legal Manuscripts in Cambridge Collections

  1. L’Engle, R. Gibbs

Series: Studies in Medieval and Early Renaissance Art History

€ 96 > € 20


This catalogue offers introductory essays on the making and the use of medieval legal manuscripts in Cambridge collections, in order to call attention to the illuminated legal texts as splendidly decorated medieval manuscripts.

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Making and breaking the rules: succession in medieval Europe, c. 1000-c.1600
Etablir et abolir les normes: La succession dans l’Europe médiévale, vers 1000-vers 1600
Edited by F. Lachaud, M. Penman

Series: Histoires de famille. La parenté au Moyen Age

€ 55 > € 20


Proceedings of the colloquium held on 6-7-8 April 2006. Actes de la conférence tenue les 6, 7 et 8 avril 2006, Institute of Historical Research (University of London).

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Les élites au haut moyen âge
Crises et renouvellements
Edited by F. Bougard, L. Feller, R. Le Jan

Series: Haut Moyen Âge

€ 65 > € 20


L’ouvrage propose un objet d’étude fascinant et paradoxal à la fois, celui des crises et du renouvellement des élites au haut Moyen Âge.

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The Order of the Golden Tree
The Gift-giving Objectives of Duke Philip The Bold of Burgundy

C.M. Chattaway

Series: Burgundica

€ 70 > € 20


“Chattaway’s study is a profound one and solidly grounded in archival research, which is why it has earned a place in the prestigious Burgundica series”. (Bas Jongenelen in Sixteenth Century Journal, XXXIX/1, 2008, pp. 326-327)

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Saints, Scholars, and Politicians
Gender as a Tool in Medieval Studies
Edited by M. van Dijk, R. I.A. Nip

Series: Medieval Church Studies

€ 45 > € 20


The essays within this volume critique and evaluate the use of gender as a major analytical tool in medieval studies.

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Kleine Schriften zu den Konzilsakten des 7. Jahrhunderts
R. Riedinger

Series: Instrumenta Patristica et Mediaevalia

€ 78,10 > € 20


A collection of 22 articles by the author published in widely differing outlets in the period 1976-1996.

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The Ways of Jewish Martyrdom
S. Goldin

Series: Cursor Mundi

€ 85 > € 20


“Enlisting a wealth of sources, the author attempts to explain the valorization of martyrdom as a cultural norm in medieval Jewish communities of Germany, France and England.” (Susan L. Einbinder, in: The Medieval Review, 09.02.06)

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Liberté et progrès chez Origène

  1. Lekkas

Series: Monothéismes et Philosophie

€ 60 > € 20


Le travail de Georges Lekkas est unique, en ce qu’il construit une thèse qui suit parfaitement le rythme de l’élaboration origénienne et qui décrit l’évolution progressive du réseau argumentatif.

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La Salle aux Trésors

Chefs-d’œuvre de l’art Roman et Mosan
Edited by C. Dumortier

Series: Royal Museums for Art and History, Brussels / French version

€ 55 > € 20


La Salle aux Trésors du Musée du Cinquantenaire présente des œuvres médiévales comptant parmi les plus belles, les plus précieuses et les plus rares conservées aux Musées Royaux d’Art et d’Histoire.

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Livres et lectures de femmes en Europe entre moyen âge et renaissance
Edited by A.-M. Legaré

€ 120 > € 20


“Un ouvrage sérieux, érudit et varié (…).”

(Aladin. Le magazine des chineurs, N° 240, juin 2008)

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A Catalogue Raisonné of Scientific Instruments from the Louvain School, 1530-1600

  1. Van Cleempoel
    Series: De Diversis Artibus

€ 75 > € 20


This object-based study concentrates on scientific instruments made in Louvain between c. 1530 and c. 1600, a period in which the university fell from the peak of its importance into a state of decline.

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Les Principautés dans l’Occident Médiéval
A l’origine des régions
Edited by B. Demotz

€ 61 > € 20


Cet ouvrage présente un panorama des fondations et de l’évolution des principautés afin d’évaluer une réalité historique encore trop sous-estimée, mais il se veut aussi une réflexion sur un des sujets fondamentaux de l’histoire politique.

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Images de musiciens (1350-1500)

Typologies, figurations et pratiques sociales

  1. Clouzot

Series: Epitome musical

€ 80 > € 20


“La force du livre, luxurieusement illustré, de Martine Clouzot est de montrer que les enluminures des manuscrits médiévaux, loin d’être une fenêtre ouverte sur le monde des musiciens, recodent une réalité déjà codée.” (L’Histoire, n° 329, mars 2008)

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Le château, autour et alentours (XIVe – XVIe siècles)

Paysage, parc, jardin & domaine
Edited by J.-M. Cauchies, J. Guisset

€ 73 > € 20


Un château, c’est d’abord une bâtisse. Il y a un faisceau de composantes qui mériteront de capter, à travers textes, images et objets, l’oeil de l’historien, de l’historien de l’art et de l’archéologue.

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Logica Morelli
Edited from the manuscripts with an introduction, notes and indices

  1. Spruyt

Series: Studia Artistarum

€ 50 > € 20


This volume contains the first critical edition of a Spanish textbook on logic, found in the libraries of Sevilla and Zaragoza.

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Manichaeism and Early Christianity

Edited by L. Cirillo, A. Van Tongerloo

Series: Manichaean Studies

€ 75 > € 20

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New Website: Walters Ex Libris (Walters Art Museum Manuscripts)

walters-to-deleteNew Website: Walters Ex Libris (Walters Art Museum Manuscripts) online at manuscripts.thewalters.org.

Featuring a user-friendly design, the site provides visitors with intuitive search options, including the ability to refine their search by date, geography, subject, culture, and more. It also gives users a chance to coordinate their own online collections by gathering, saving and sharing their favorite masterpieces.
Images include covers and flyleaves, and provided under a Creative Commons 3.0 license that allows visitors to download publication-quality pictures for free.

To date, the Walters has digitized 45 percent of its manuscripts collection.

The manuscripts site, an ongoing project, joins the museum’s growing network of online resources, including its general website, thewalters.org, and its online collection, art.thewalters.org.



CFPs: Bibliography Among the Disciplines Conference, Philadelphia, October 12-15, 2017

tumblr_nid8xdrz0n1soj7s4o4_500Call for Papers: Bibliography Among the Disciplines Conference, Philadelphia, October 12-15, 2017
Deadline: October 25, 2016

For more information on panels, round-tables, short presentations and working groups, and for submission guidelines, see: http://rarebookschool.org/bibliography-conference-2017/

Bibliography Among the Disciplines, a four-day international conference to be held in Philadelphia from 12 to 15 October 2017, will bring together scholarly professionals poised to address current problems pertaining to the study of textual artifacts that cross scholarly, pedagogical, professional, and curatorial domains. The conference will explore theories and methods common to the object-oriented disciplines, such as anthropology and archaeology, but new to bibliography. The Bibliography Among the Disciplines program, supported by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, aims to promote focused cross-disciplinary exchange and future scholarly collaborations. The conference sessions will include both traditional and innovative formats: plenary addresses, short presentations, roundtables, workshops, working groups, and site visits. Calls for Proposals and Participants (CFPs) are listed below. The project will culminate in 2019 with a volume of essays contributed by conference participants. The conference and subsequent volume will seek to build on the ongoing series of symposia conducted by Rare Book School’s Andrew W. Mellon Fellowship of Scholars in Critical Bibliography, established in 2012 through funding from the Foundation.

Call for Papers- Panels:

Graphic Representation: Illustration & Diagrams
Session Organizers: Claire Eager (University of Virginia), Jeannie Kenmotsu (University of Pennsylvania)

Textual Instruments
Session Organizer: Nick Wilding (Georgia State University)

Questions of Scale, Production & Labor
Session Organizer: Juliet Sperling (University of Pennsylvania)

Transmission & Transfer of Images
Session Organizer: Aaron Hyman (University of California, Berkeley

Degradation, Loss, Recovery & Fragmentation
Session Organizer: Jane Raisch (University of California, Berkeley)

Materiality of Digital Objects
Session Organizer: Ryan Cordell (Northeastern University)

The Social Life of Books: Uses of Text & Image Beyond Reading & Viewing
Session Organizers: Aaron Hyman (University of California, Berkeley), Hannah Marcus (Harvard University), Marissa Nicosia (Penn State University, Abington College)

Books as Agents of Contact
Session Organizers: Hansun Hsiung (Max Planck Institute for the History of Science), András Kiséry (The City College of New York), Yael Rice (Amherst College)

Manuscript in the Age of Print
Session Organizers: Rachael King (University of California, Santa Barbara), Marissa Nicosia (Penn State University, Abington College)

Reading the Whole Book: Object Interpretation
Session Organizer: Lauren Jennings (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill)

Comparative Histories of the Book
Session Organizers: Megan McNamee (Center for Advanced Study in the Visual Arts), Caroline Wigginton (University of Mississippi)

Reappraising the Redundant: The Value of Copies in the Study of Textual Artifacts
Session Organizer: Kappy Mintie (University of California, Berkeley)n and

Call for Papers – Roundtables:

Performance, Textuality & Orality
Session Organizer: Glenda Goodman (University of Pennsylvania)

Session Organizers: András Kiséry (The City College of New York), Caroline Wigginton (University of Mississippi)

Digitization, Representation & Access
Session Organizer: Paul Fyfe (North Carolina State University)

Materiality as a Sustainable Humanistic Discourse
Session Organizers: Meghan Doherty (Berea College), Dahlia Porter (University of North Texas), Elizabeth Yale (University of Iowa)

Ethics & Responsibility in the Bibliosphere
Session Organizer: Claire Eager (University of Virginia)

 Call for papers – Short Presentations:

Tools for Data Analysis & Visualization
Session Organizer: Ryan Cordell (Northeastern University)

Innovative Pedagogy with Material Objects
Session Organizer: Elizabeth Yale (University of Iowa)

Teaching Global Book History
Session Organizers: Devin Fitzgerald (Harvard University) & Ben Nourse (University of Denver)

Dynamics of Digital Collections
Session Organizer: Paul Fyfe (North Carolina State University)

The Book and Its Time: Developing a ‘Period Eye’
Session Organizer: Marie-Stéphanie Delamaire (Winterthur Museum)

Call for Papers: Working Groups:

Globalizing Book History & Bibliography
Working Group Organizers: Hwisang Cho (Xavier University), Ben Nourse (University of Denver), Rachel Stein (Columbia University in the City of New York)

Resembling Science: The Unruly Object Across the Disciplines
Working Group Organizers: Meghan Doherty (Berea College), Dahlia Porter (University of North Texas), Courtney Roby (Cornell University)


Book roundup: Medieval architecture

All is thriving in medieval architecture publishing from the Romanesque to the Late Gothic: here are some very special books that have been published in the last few months.

As always do let us know of any recently-published medieval art history books you would like us to include in a book roundup – we would be happy to let people to know about them!


978-0-271-06645-5[1]Tom Nickson – Toledo Cathedral: Building Histories in Medieval Castile (Penn State University Press)

Medieval Toledo is famous as a center of Arabic learning and as a home to sizable Jewish, Muslim, and Christian communities. Yet its cathedral—one of the largest, richest, and best preserved in all of Europe—is little known outside Spain. In Toledo Cathedral, Tom Nickson provides the first in-depth analysis of the cathedral’s art and architecture. Focusing on the early thirteenth to the late fourteenth century, he examines over two hundred years of change and consolidation, tracing the growth of the cathedral in the city as well as the evolution of sacred places within the cathedral itself. Nickson goes on to consider this substantial monument in terms of its location in Toledo, Spain’s most cosmopolitan city in the medieval period. He also addresses the importance and symbolic significance of Toledo’s cathedral to the city and the art and architecture of the medieval Iberian Peninsula, showing how it fits in with broader narratives of change in the arts, culture, and ideology of the late medieval period in Spain and in Mediterranean Europe as a whole.

Tom Nickson is Lecturer in Medieval Art and Architecture at The Courtauld Institute of Art, London.

1400.medium[1]Costanza Beltrami – Building a Crossing Tower: A Design for Rouen Cathedral of 1516 (Paul Holberton Publishing)

Prompted by the recent discovery of an impressive three-metre tall late Gothic drawing of a soaring tower and spire, this book offers a rare insight into the processes of designing and building a major Gothic project. The drawing’s place and date of creation are unknown, and it corresponds to no surviving Gothic tower. Equally mysterious is the three-quarter, top-down perspective from which the tower is represented, without parallel in any other medieval drawings. Who drew this? When? And what did he hope to convey with his choice of a top-down representation of the tower? Building a Crossing Tower explores these questions, and uncovers the dramatic circumstances in which this drawing was created.

Costanza Beltrami is a PhD student at The Courtauld Institute of Art, London.

9781783270842[1]Ron Baxter – The Royal Abbey of Reading (Boydell and Brewer)

Reading Abbey was built by King Henry I to be a great architectural statement and his own mausoleum, as well as a place of resort and a staging point for royal itineraries for progresses in the west and south-west of England. From the start it was envisaged as a monastic site with a high degree of independence from the church hierarchy; it was granted enormous holdings of land and major religious relics to attract visitors and pilgrims, and no expense was spared in providing a church comparable in size and splendour with anything else in England.
However, in architectural terms, the abbey has, until recently, remained enigmatic, mainly because of the efficiency with which it was destroyed at the Reformation. Only recently has it become possible to bring together the scattered evidence – antiquarian drawings and historic records along with a new survey of the standing remains – into a coherent picture. This richly illustrated volume provides the first full account of the abbey, from foundation to dissolution, and offers a new virtual reconstruction of the church and its cloister; it also shows how the abbey formed the backdrop to many key historical events.

Ron Baxter is the Research Director of the Corpus of Romanesque Sculpture in Britain and Ireland.

Book Roundup: Summer 2015

9780300209891[1]Postcards on Parchment The Social Lives of Medieval Books by Kathryn M. Rudy (Yale University Press)

Medieval prayer books held not only the devotions and meditations of Christianity, but also housed, slipped between pages, sundry notes, reminders, and ephemera, such as pilgrims’ badges, sworn oaths, and small painted images. Many of these last items have been classified as manuscript illumination, but Kathryn M. Rudy argues that these pictures should be called, instead, parchment paintings, similar to postcards. In a delightful study identifying this group of images for the first time, Rudy delineates how these objects functioned apart from the books in which they were kept. Whereas manuscript illuminations were designed to provide a visual narrative to accompany a book’s text, parchment paintings offered a kind of autonomous currency for exchange between individuals—people who longed for saturated color in a gray world of wood, stone, and earth. These small, colorful pictures offered a brilliant reprieve, and Rudy shows how these intriguing and previously unfamiliar images were traded and cherished, shedding light into the everyday life and relationships of those in the medieval Low Countries.

Kathryn M. Rudy is senior lecturer in the School of Art at the University of St. Andrews


6b5bf994aa[1]Rogier van der Weyden and the Iberian kingdoms (Prado)

Rogier van der Weyden y los reinos peninsulares (Rogier van der Weyden and the Iberian kingdoms) accompanies the recent show at The Prado in Madrid, and consists of two texts by the exhibition curator Lorne Campbell, who is hailed as the leading specialist on the master of Tournai: Vida y obra de Rogier van der Weyden (Life and oeuvre of Rogier van der Weyden) and Rogier van der Weyden y los reinos ibéricos (Rogier van der Weyden and the Iberian kingdoms), which will introduce readers to the artist and his relationship with Spain. It also features a text by Carmen García-Frías, curator of painting at Patrimonio Nacional, entitled La recuperación de una obra maestra: el Calvario del monasterio del Escorial de Rogier van der Weyden (The restoration of a masterpiece: Rogier van der Weyden’s Calvary in the Monastery of El Escorial).

It also includes catalogue entries for the works on show written by Lorne Campbell, José Juan Pérez Preciado, Pilar Silva and Stephan Kemperdick.


1430902501[1]La Picardie flamboyante: Arts et reconstruction entre 1450 et 1550 edited by Étienne Hamon, Dominique Paris-Poulain et Julie Aycard (Presses Universitaires de Rennes)

At the turn of the Middle Ages and the Renaissance, Picardy experienced a tremendous economic and artistic revival. This book offers new insights into the institutions, artists, sponsors, infrastructures and works of art that were players and products of the long-lived “Flamboyant” Style.

Philippe Racinet et Julie Colaye La reconstruction économique en Picardie (1450-1550) L’exemple du prieuré de Bray-sur-Aunette au diocèse de Senlis

Juliette Maquet Une seigneurie picarde au sortir de la guerre de Cent Ans Boves, 1453-1454

Christophe Cloquier Le cours de la Somme Une voie fluviale privilégiée au cœur de la Picardie flamboyante, entre 1450 et 1550

Jean-Christophe Dumain Laon au lendemain de la guerre de Cent Ans L’apport des archives comptables pour l’étude d’une reconstruction (1450-1500)

Mathieu Beghin Regards croisés sur deux chantiers urbains de la Picardie flamboyante Amiens et Arras (vers 1500-vers 1550)

Emmanuel de Crouy-Chanel Tours de la Haye, de Guyancourt et du Kay Les « grosses tours » de la ville d’Amiens (1476-1490)

Karine Berthier Les aménagements de la porte Montrescu à Amiens à la fin du xve siècle et au début du xvie siècle

Mathieu Deldicque Quelques jalons dans l’étude du mécénat des grands commanditaires picards, de Louis XI à Louis XII

Dominique Paris-Poulain Renouveler le décor monumental à l’époque flamboyante L’église Saint-Léger de Lucheux et le mécénat de Marie de Luxembourg

Florian Meunier De Beauvais à Montdidier, l’itinéraire flamboyant de Scipion Bernard

Camille Serchuk À la limite La vie et la carrière de Zacharie de Celers

Julie Aycard Destruction et reconstruction des églises de l’ancien diocèse de Senlis (1460-1515) Mythe et réalité

Jacques Dubois Les grands travaux de restauration de Saint-Samson de Clermont-de-l’Oise

Étienne Hamon Le dessin et l’architecte au soir de l’âge gothique Le projet de portail du fonds de l’hôtel-Dieu d’Amiens

Marie-Domitille Porcheron Flamboyance de l’architecture dans les Puys de Picardie Fonds de tableaux, haut-relief, cadres, menuiseries

Kristiane Lemé-Hébuterne Construction et ornementation des stalles en Picardie à la fin du xve et au début du xvie siècle Continuité ou innovation

Alexandra Gérard et Jennifer Vatelot Les retables en bois sculpté polychromé du xvie siècle de l’Oise Étude et restauration des exemples du Vaumain et de Labosse

Françoise Lernout La Vierge en prière du musée de Picardie, une iconographie singulière?


Fallen Idols, Risen Saints: Sainte Foy of Conques and the Revival of Monumental Sculpture in Medieval Art by Beate Fricke (Brepols)

dIS-9782503541181-1[1]This book presents an analysis and contextualization of the revival of monumental sculpture in medieval art, and outlines the history of image culture, visuality and fiction.

This book investigates the origins and transformations of medieval image culture and its reflections in theology, hagiography, historiography and art. It deals with a remarkable phenomenon: the fact that, after a period of 500 years of absence, the tenth century sees a revival of monumental sculpture in the Latin West. Since the end of Antiquity and the “pagan” use of free-standing, life-size sculptures in public and private ritual, Christians were obedient to the Second Commandment forbidding the making and use of graven images. Contrary to the West, in Byzantium, such a revival never occurred: only relief sculpture – mostly integrated within an architectural context – was used. However, Eastern theologians are the authors of highly fascinating and outstanding original theoretical reflections about the nature and efficacy of images. How can this difference be explained? Why do we find the most fascinating theoretical concepts of images in a culture that sticks to two-dimensional icons often venerated as cult-images that are copied and repeated, but only randomly varied? And why does a groundbreaking change in the culture of images – the “revival” of monumental sculpture – happen in a context that provides more restrained theoretical reflections upon images in their immediate theological, liturgical and artistic contexts? These are some of the questions that this book seeks to answer.The analysis and contextualization of the revival of monumental sculpture includes reflections on liturgy, architecture, materiality of minor arts and reliquaries, medieval theories of perception, and gift exchange and its impact upon practices of image veneration, aesthetics and political participation. Drawing on the historical investigation of specific objects and texts between the ninth and the eleventh century, the book outlines an occidental history of image culture, visuality and fiction, claiming that only images possess modes of visualizing what in the discourse of medieval theology can never be addressed and revealed.

As usual please do send any suggestions for books to feature in this most irregular feature to medievalartresearch@gmail.com – don’t be shy!