Tag Archives: iconography

Call for Papers: ‘The Other Half of Heaven: Visualizing Female Sanctity in East and West (c. 1200-1500) I-II’, ICMS 2019 (Deadline: 1 September 2018)

untitled1An ICMA-sponsored session at the 54th ICMS (International Congress of Medieval Studies) Kalamazoo, 9-12 May 2019

Organizer: Ioanna Christoforaki, Academy of Athens

If, according to the well-known Chinese proverb, women hold half the sky, did medieval female saints hold half of heaven? In her book of 1998, Forgetful of their Sex: Female Sanctity and Society, ca. 500-1100, Jane Schulenburg calculated that of over 2200 female and male saints examined, only one in seven (or 15%) were women. Although documentation on medieval women is notably scarce, this gender-based asymmetry in the celestial realm clearly reflected the values and hierarchy of earthly society.

 

Female saints were exceptional women who gained social status, popular recognition

and enhanced visibility through sainthood. Medieval female sanctity is a multi-faceted

phenomenon, which has been mainly explored through words. Historians and literary

scholars have fruitfully mined historical and hagiographical texts not only to draw

‘facts’ about the lives of female saints but also to elucidate social mentalities and

highlight gender issues. Holy women, however, were also represented on a variety of

media, most notably on icons, frescoes, manuscript illuminations and other artworks.

Nevertheless, despite the wealth of historical and hagiographical scholarship on female saints, their visual representations have been exploited almost exclusively in stylistic or iconographic terms.

The aim of this session is to consider female sanctity in visual terms both in Western Europe and the Byzantine East. By exploring representations of women saints and their changing iconography, it aspires to shed light on their status and experience in late medieval society. It will examine images of holy women as embodiments of cultural models and explore the social and religious environment that shaped their visual constructions. In the highly symbolic world of the Middle Ages, representations of female saints can become a vehicle for multiple interpretations, including social status, gender, identity, ethnicity and collective memory.

Some of the issues to be addressed include but are not restricted to:

  • Visual narratives and iconographic attributes defining female sanctity
  • The corporeality of female saints and the representation of the holy body
  • The iconography of transvestite holy women
  • Out of sight, out of mind: forgotten saints and newcomers
  • The relation between female holy images and text in illuminated manuscripts
  • The influence of mendicant literature on picturing female sanctity
  • One saint, many images: changes in iconography and meaning
  • Iconographic variations of the Virgin in East and West

Participants in ICMA-sponsored sessions are eligible to receive travel funds, generously provided by the Samuel H. Kress Foundation. The Kress funds are allocated for travel and hotel only. Speakers will be refunded only after the conference, against travel receipts.

 

Please send paper proposals of 300 words to the Chair of the ICMA Programs

Committee, Beth Williamson (beth.williamson@bristol.ac.uk) by September 1, 2018,

together with a completed Participant Information Form, to be found at the following address: https://wmich.edu/medievalcongress/submissions#papers. Please include your name, title, and affiliation on the abstract itself. All abstracts not accepted for the session will be forwarded to the Congress administration for consideration in general sessions, as per Congress regulations.

Advertisements

Call for Papers: ‘Apocryphal Iconography: Integration, Adaptation, and Church Tradition’, IMC 2019 (Deadline: 15 September 2018)

the-meeting-at-the-golden-gateCFP is now open for: Apocryphal Iconography: Integration, Adaptation, and Church Tradition’

Call for Papers for Session Proposal at the International Medieval Congress (IMC 2019), July 1 – 4, 2019, University of Leeds.

The proposed session is devoted to the integration and adaptation of apocryphal sources in the construction of medieval iconographies with the aim of bringing into attention this generally neglected and underrepresented field. Research in this field concentrates mostly on the textual tradition and transmission of apocryphal texts, yet certain aspects still need to be addressed, such as:

The construction and function of apocryphal iconographies;
The context of sources for artists due to lack of information on holy lives;
Apocryphal visual representations and church tradition;

Original work and research is welcomed starting from the Late Antiquity to Late Middle Ages, both in the East and West. The session refers to the concept of ‘apochrypha/on’ as movable texts whose composition does not end in the 4th-5th centuries in the context of the establishment and closing of the canon. This permits to address issues concerning the evolution, transmission, adoptation, and adaptation of sources.

This session also aims to bring its intellectual outcomes into the attention of the general public by publishing, contextually, the proceedings of the debates in the series “Picturing the Middle Ages and Early Modernity” at Trivent Publishing, Budapest, Hungary.

Please submit a working title and a 250-word proposal for a 15-20 minute paper presentation by September 15th, 2018, at the latest.

Contact information:

Andrea-Bianka Znorovszky, Ca’Foscari University, Venice, Italy
(andrea.znorovszky@unive.it)

Teodora C. Artimon, Trivent Publishing, Budapest, Hungary
(teodora.artimon@trivent-publishing.eu)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Call for Papers: Encountering Medieval Iconography in the Twenty-First Century: Scholarship, Social Media, and Digital Methods: A Roundtable (Deadline 15 September 2018)

treadmillcrane54th International Congress on Medieval Studies, Kalamazoo, MI, May 9 – 12, 2019
Deadline: Sep 15, 2018

Encountering Medieval Iconography in the Twenty-First Century: Scholarship, Social Media, and Digital Methods: A Roundtable

Organizers: M. Alessia Rossi and Jessica Savage (Index of Medieval Art, Princeton University)
Sponsored by the Index of Medieval Art, Princeton University

Stemming from the launch of the new database and enhancements of search technology and social media at the Index of Medieval Art, this roundtable addresses the many ways we encounter medieval iconography in the twenty-first century. We invite proposals from emerging scholars and a variety of professionals who are teaching with, blogging about, and cataloguing medieval iconography. This discussion will touch on the different ways we consume and create information with our research, shed light on original approaches, and discover common goals.

Participants in this roundtable will give short introductions (5-7 minutes) on issues relevant to their area of specialization and participate in a discussion on how they use online resources, such as image databases, to incorporate the study of medieval iconography into their teaching, research, and public outreach. Possible questions include: What makes an online collection “teaching-friendly” and accessible for student discovery? How does social media, including Twitter, Facebook, and blogging, make medieval image collections more visible? How do these platforms broaden interest in iconography and connect users to works of art? What are the aims and impact of organizations such as, the Index, the Getty, the INHA, the Warburg, and ICONCLASS, who are working with large stores of medieval art and architecture information? How can we envisage a wider network and discussion of professional practice within this specialized area?

Please send a 250-word abstract outlining your contribution to this roundtable and a completed Participant Information Form (available via the Congress Submissions website: https://wmich.edu/medievalcongress/submissions) by September 15 to M. Alessia Rossi (marossi@princeton.edu) and Jessica Savage (jlsavage@princeton.edu). More information about the Congress can be found here: https://wmich.edu/medievalcongress.

British Museum Handling Session: The Trinity

GodwinOn Wednesday 24 January 2018 Lloyd de Beer and Naomi Speakman once again welcomed a group of staff and students from The Courtauld and elsewhere, as well as Sophie Kelly, PhD student from the University of Kent. The focus of our session was objects in the British Museum collection with links to the Trinity.

We looked at eleven objects with Trinitarian iconography, the earliest of which was the walrus ivory seal die of Godwin the Thane, dating from the early eleventh century. Beautifully carved with iconography inspired by Psalm 109 (110), ‘The Lord said unto my Lord: Sit thou at my right hand and I will make thine enemies thy footstool’. The decoration on the handle consists of God the Father and Son in relief, enthroned over a prostrate human figure. We were very interested to investigate the evidence of damage above the two figures which, we agreed, was likely to have once included a symbol of the Holy Ghost in the form of a dove.

The Trinity also features on a fourteenth-century circular bronze seal-matrix (with wax impression) with a loop at top. Here the Trinity is depicted as three near-identical figures with an inscription ‘SCA TRINITAS.VHVS.DEVS’. The third seal which we saw was the fifteenth-century circular bronze seal-matrix (with wax impression) of the Friars of the Holy Trinity, Hounslow. Under a Gothic canopy with side-tabernacles the Trinity is depicted in a manner which allowed us to discuss different ways of representing the Trinity in the Middle Ages. Here, the iconography known as the Throne of Grace (Gnadenstuhl), is used. In these depictions of the Trinity, God the Father is seated and holds the cross upon which Jesus Christ is crucified in front of his lap, with the dove of the Holy Spirit alongside. This iconography became popular from the thirteenth century and is seen across a wide range of artistic media, including manuscripts, stained glass and stone carving. The Trinity depicted as the Throne of Grace also appeared on a late Medieval gold finger ring. With the help of a magnifying glass we were able to appreciate the detailed depiction of the Trinity on the oval bezel of the ring, which included the dove which is shown between Christ’s right arm and God the Father.

 

Black Prince badgeWe discussed Plantagenet devotion to the Trinity evidenced through the lead Badge of the Black Prince of c.1376 which shows the Black Prince kneeling before Trinity (although the dove is missing). The Black Prince wears a tabard with Arms of England and has thrown down his gauntlet before him; above him is an angel in clouds holding his shield. We also looked at two Anglo-Saxon ivory plaques depicting the Crucifixion. Above the head of Christ, the Hand of God is depicted, thereby alerting us to the presence of two persons of the Trinity. This led to discussion related to how we might understand images where one of the member of the Trinity is ‘missing’; can the presence of the other person be implied?

 

An object which we all found challenging was a wood-carved relief representing the Trinity (also in the Throne of Mercy composition) dated 1450-1500 and including depictions of the Annunciation, St Francis of Assisi, St Bernardino and St Sebastian. The largest object encountered was a late Medieval alabaster Coronation of the Virgin which still shows traces of painting and gilding. Here the Virgin is surrounded by the persons of the Trinity represented as three crowned figures.

close looking

In preparation for the handling session we read the following texts and discussed them at a reading group the night before:

 

Bernard McGinn, ‘Theologians as Trinitarian Iconographers’, In: Jeffrey Hamburger and Anne-Marie Bouché The Mind’s Eye. Art and Theological Argument in the Middle Ages, Princeton, 2006, 186-207

André Grabar, ‘Dogmas Expressed in a Single Image’, In: Christian Iconography. A Study of its Origins, London, 1969, 112-127

Jacobus De Voragine, ‘The Holy Spirit’, In: The Golden Legend, Princeton, 1993, 299-306

We looked at the definition of the Trinity in The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church (Oxford, 1997), and were interested to explore the tension between theology and iconography. In particular, how can dogma such as the Trinity be represented? Grabar and McGinn have contrasting views on what constitutes ‘successful’ iconography; McGinn sees artistic experimentation and lack of iconographic stability as positives, whereas Grabar suggests that the fact an image appears in limited or isolated circumstances makes it a failure. To aid our discussions, we looked at some manuscript images of the Trinity. These included: British Library, MS Cotton Tiberius C vi (Tiberius Psalter); British Library, MS Cotton Titus D. xxvii (Ælfwine’s Prayerbook); British Library, MS Add. 34890 (Grimbald Gospels); British Library MS Cotton B IV (Aelfric’s Hexateuch); British Library, MS Harley 603 (Harley Psalter); MS Lansdowne 383 (the Shaftesbury Psalter); Winchester Bible, Winchester Cathedral; and St John’s College, Cambridge, MS K 26 (St John’s Psalter). We discussed the experimental nature of Trinitarian iconography and how this might help us understand the chancel wall painting of the Throne of Grace at the Church of St Mary, Houghton-on-the-Hill, Norfolk which is unique, and the earliest known appearance of this motif.

CFP: 12th Conference of Iconographic Studies: Iconography of Pain, Rijeka (Croatia),  May 31 – June 01, 2018

Call for Papers: 12th Conference of Iconographic Studies: Iconography of Pain, Rijeka (Croatia),  May 31 – June 01, 2018
Deadline: 20 January 2018

The conference seeks to explore and discuss recent development in the dialogue between art history, history, theology, philosophy, cultural theory and other relevant disciplines concerning the representation and perception of pain (both physical and emotional) in history. Pain represents not only one of the very used subjects in art but also the strong creative force for many artists. It has been recently discussed as being a transformative force in cultural production but also beyond the cultural and temporal boundaries. It can be also perceived within specific methodological paradigm of the Warburg’s Pathosformel as well as within the broader theoretical contexts. We welcome academic papers that will approach these subjects in interdisciplinary and methodologically diverse angles. The themes and subjects include, but are not limited to the following:

  • pain as art form
  • torture, punishment and penal iconography
  • spectacle(s) of pain
  • violence in visual culture
  • martyrs and martyrdoms
  • passion iconography
  • dealing with pain – images of medical and other treatments in history
  • pain as creative impulse in art
  • (in)expressibility of physical pain

Paper proposals should be submitted electronically to cis@ffri.hr

A paper proposal should contain:

  1. full name, institution, affiliation, address, phone number(s), e-mail address
  2. title
  3. abstract (maximum 2 pages – 500 words)

Deadline: January 20, 2018

Invitations to participate will be sent out by email before February 20, 2018

There is NO registration fee

Administration and organizational costs, working materials, lunch and coffee breaks during conference, closing dinner as well as all organized visits are covered by the organizers.

All presented papers will be published in the thematic issue of the IKON journal in May 2019.

CFP: St Luke Drawing the Virgin and Child (County Durham, 19 Jun 2017)

St Luke Drawing the Virgin and Child' by Dieric Bout the Elder

‘St Luke Drawing the Virgin and Child’ by Dieric Bout the Elder

County Durham, The Bowes Museum, Barnard Castle, June 19, 2017
Deadline: May 8, 2017

CVAC Study Day ‘St Luke Drawing the Virgin and Child: Constructing Narratives’

Following an export bar in July 2016, The Bowes Museum acquired the outstanding painting, ‘St Luke Drawing the Virgin and Child’ by Dieric Bout the Elder with support from the the Art Fund, Heritage Lottery Fund and a number of private donors. The painting is of major importance due to its connection with the artist, deemed one of the leading and most influential Netherlandish painters of his time.

This interdisciplinary study day aims to look at the painting ‘St Luke Drawing the Virgin and Child’ in the broad context of visual culture: exploring sainthood and investigating visual representations of sanctity, looking at perspective, with a particular attention to interiors and architecture in early modern Europe, and analysing identity and self-imagery.

The event is designed to be a cross- and inter-disciplinary study day where scholars, postgraduate and early career researchers can meet, debate, and collaborate on all issues pertaining to visual culture.

The Bowes Museum and CVAC invite proposals for thirty-minute papers from scholars, postgraduate and early career researchers that address any aspect of art, literature, history, and culture, with a particular attention to:

–    Sainthood from Medieval to contemporary time;
–    Visual representation of saints;
–    Architecture and interiors in early modern Europe;
–    Portraiture and identity;
–    The theory and practice of perspective;
–    Patronage and trade and circulation in early modern Europe.

The study day will take place at The Bowes Museum on 19 June 2017, with a number of thirty-minute papers, followed by discussion, and including lunch and morning and afternoon refreshments.

Abstracts of up to 200 words along with a brief biography should be submitted in the body of an email to
catherine.dickinson@thebowesmuseum.org.uk .

The closing date for submissions is Monday 8 May 2017, at 5pm.

For more details, please contact
catherine.dickinson@thebowesmuseum.org.uk