Tag Archives: rivers

CFP: Crossing Rivers in Byzantium and Beyond (Vienna, 2-3 Nov 18) (Deadline 1 June 18)

Crossing Rivers in Byzantium and Beyond

Department of Art History, University of Vienna, 02. – 03.11.2018
Deadline: Jun 1, 2018

“It is always dramatic to cross a frontier, even though the frontier is only a brook”
(V. S. Pritchett, Geographical Magazine, December, 1942)

This workshop is organized as part of the project “Byzantine Stone Bridges: Material Evidence and Cultural Meaning,” managed by Dr. Galina Fingarova at the Department of Art History of the University of Vienna. It is generously funded by the Austrian Science Fund (FWF), Elise-Richter-Program. For further information, see http://bridges.univie.ac.at/.

This project focuses on a long-overlooked aspect of architectural and cultural history – Byzantine stone bridges. It investigates the particularities of this type of architectural monuments built from the fourth to the fifteenth centuries on territories under imperial Byzantine rule. It addresses the following enquiries: 1) reconstructing the
significance of Byzantine stone bridges in the context of architectural history by analyzing the structural and technical innovations that are evident in the preserved monuments; and 2) understanding the importance of bridges as sources for a Byzantine cultural and social history, in particular, on a political, symbolic, and metaphorical level.

This workshop will expand on the project’s research questions and methodological approaches by placing these in a broader context. The workshop encourages an interdisciplinary discourse on the unique characteristic of rivers to define territories and boundaries and on their crossing as a means of connection in a real and figurative sense. It seeks to transcend both the territorial and chronological limits of the Byzantine Empire.

Confirmed Keynote: Professor Jim Crow (University of Edinburgh)

Scholars working in the fields of Roman, Late Antique, Byzantine, Medieval, Ottoman, and Middle Eastern Studies
are invited to submit proposals for 20-minute papers connected with but not limited to the following topics:
• Riverine landscapes;
• River crossings as political, social, military, or commercial events;
• Urban and rural communities on and along rivers;
• Architectural and engineering achievements in hydrology;
• Ford and ferry;
• Pontoon, wooden, and stone bridges;
• Related structures such as aqueducts, mills, etc.;
• Mythological and religious aspects of river crossings;
• Emotional experiences at or traversing rivers.

Please send proposals of no more than 300 words, including a title and an abstract, together with a short CV to Dr. Galina Fingarova (galina.fingarova@univie.ac.at) by June 1, 2018.

Advertisements

Call For Papers: Art on the Move in Eastern Europe and the Mediterranean

Call For Papers: Seminar Series, Art on the Move in Eastern Europe and the Mediterranean (2014-15)
Deadline: Jan 10, 2014

dsc0095_psdA Harvard University Research Seminar organized as part of the Getty Foundation’s Connecting Art Histories initiative, led by Alina Payne (Harvard University).

This research seminar zeroes in on rivers as the cultural infrastructure of the Mediterranean world in the early modern period, as carriers of people, things, and ideas tying geographies and cultures together. The king of such rivers was undoubtedly the Danube, running a parallel
course to the Mediterranean and cutting across Europe from West to East. Flowing into the Black Sea, it entered the system of communicating vessels of the Mediterranean—the old Roman mare nostrum itself, the Sea of Marmara, the Black Sea, and, the last ripple that separates and unites three continents, the Sea of Azov.

But the Danube was not alone in swelling the Mediterranean world with the cultures along its shores. The Sava, the Adige, the Neretva, the Pruth, the Dniester and Dnieper, and the Don (which flows into the Sea of Azov) etc. connect the “traditional” Mediterranean cultures—the
Italian, the Ottoman, the Greek/Byzantine, the French and Spanish—with the world of the Balkans and beyond. Starting from this perspective, this seminar seeks to develop a framework for understanding how the Balkans and its northern neighbors mediated between East and West, as well as the region’s contribution to the larger Mediterranean cultural melting pot in the early modern period.

The premises underlying this seminar are twofold: 1) that the contours of the Mediterranean Renaissance need to be re-drawn to include a larger territory that reflects this connectedness; and 2) that the eastern frontier of Europe extending from the Mediterranean deep into the
interior played a pivotal role in negotiating the dialogue between western Europe, Central Asia and Ottoman Turkey. On the cusp between cultures and religions, Balkan principalities, kingdoms, and fiefdoms came to embody hybridity, to act as a form of buffer or cultural “switching” system that assimilated, translated, and linked the cultures of near and Central Asia with those of Western Europe. Taking a trans-regional approach, this project aims to reconstruct the fluid ties that linked territories in a period in which hegemonies were short-lived and unstable, and in which contact nebulas generated artistic nebulas that challenge traditional historical categories of regional identities, East/West and center/periphery.

The seminar will run from spring of 2014 to summer of 2015 and will be guided by a distinguished group of scholars. Participants are invited to propose their own projects related to these themes on which they will work during this period. We seek contributions on building types (eg. carvanserais/ hans), infrastructure (bridges, fortifications and roads), domestic architecture (villas/palaces), religious and domed structures, etc., building practices, materials and artisans, on Kleinarchitektur and portable architectural objects. Proposals are also invited from participants working on spolia, on “minor” arts—cloth/silks, goldsmithry, sculpture, leather, gems and books—as well as on collecting and treasuries, that is, on artworks and luxury items that allowed ornamental forms and formal ideas to circulate and created a taste for a hybrid aesthetic, as well as on historiography.

The countries under consideration here are: Albania, Bulgaria, Croatia, Hungary, Moldova, Poland, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Slovenia, and Ukraine.

The seminar involves three stages: 1) a two-week “mobile” workshop traveling along the Dalmatian coast and using this region as case study of the issues, historiography and methodologies that this project seeks to foreground (May/June 2014); 2) a two and a half week stay at Harvard University (2 day workshop focusing on interim presentation of participants’ findings and 2 week library access in January/February 2015); and 3) a final conference (presentation of developed individual projects) and short trip to key sites on the Black Sea. On-going participation in the seminar will be based on the quality of scholarly contribution and on the level of engagement with the group.

Applicants should be post-doctoral scholars working in the Eastern European countries on which the project focuses (maximum 10 years from a doctoral degree; doctoral degree must be in hand at time of application). Travel expenses are covered. The seminar language is English: participants will need to demonstrate a strong command of the language to enable wide-ranging discussion with the other members of the seminar. Facility with languages of the region is an asset.

Applications must include: CV, personal statement, description of proposed project (500 words + one page bibliography), one published writing sample and three letters of reference are due no later than January 10, 2014. Finalists will be interviewed; participants will be notified by early
February.

Please send applications to the attention of Elizabeth Kassler-Taub, Department of History of Art and Architecture, Harvard University: ekassler@fas.harvard.edu