Tag Archives: Sainte-Chapelle

CFP: ‘Scaling the Middle Ages: Size and Scale in Medieval Art’, Courtauld Institute of Art’s 24th Annual Medieval Postgraduate Colloquium, London, Friday 8 February 2019

image-1024x745The Courtauld Institute of Art’s 24th Annual Medieval Postgraduate Colloquium invites speakers to consider issues and opportunities encountered by medieval artists and viewers in relation to size and scale.

Deadline: 16 November 2018

From micro-architectural reliquaries and minute boxwood prayer beads to colossal sculpture and the built spaces of grand cathedrals and civic structures, size mattered in medieval art. Examples of simple one-upmanship between the castles and palaces of lords and kings and the churches and cathedrals of abbots and bishops are numerous. How big to make it was a principal concern for both patrons and makers of medieval art. Scale could be manipulated to dramatic effect in the manufacture of manuscripts and the relative disposition of elements within their decorative programmes. Divine proportions – of the Temple of Solomon or the Church of the Holy Sepulchre – were evoked in the specific measurements and configuration of contemporary buildings and decisions were made based on concern with numbers and number sequences.

Inspired by the ‘Russian doll’ relationship between the Sainte Chapelle in Paris and its micro-architectural miniature in the form of a gilded reliquary in the Musée de Cluny, Scaling the Middle Ages seeks to explore a range of questions surrounding proportion, scale, size, and measurement in relation to medieval art and architecture. The Sainte Chapelle, built by the saint-king of France Louis IX to house the relics of Christ’s Passion, is itself often described as an over-sized reliquary turned inside-out. The Cluny reliquary – made to house relics of Saints Maxien, Lucien, and Julien held within the chapel – both complicates and compliments that comparison, at once shrinking the chapel back down to size through close architectural quotation of its form in miniature and pointing the viewer’s attention back to that same, larger space. The relationship between these two artefacts raises a host of questions, including:

Scale and making

How were ideas about size and scale communicated between patrons, architects, craftspeople, and artists? In an age without universal standardised units of measurement, how did craftsmen negotiate problems of scale and proportion?

How were the measurements of a medieval building determined? What techniques did architects, masons, and artists use to determine the scale of their work?

Scale and meaning

What effects were achieved and what responses evoked by the manipulation of scale, from the minute to the massive, in medieval art?

What was the role of proportion and scale in architectural ‘copies’ or quotations?

What representational problems were encountered by artists approaching out-sized subjects, such as giants?

How was scale manipulated in order to communicate hierarchy or relative importance in medieval art?

How did size and scale function in competition between patrons or communities in their artistic commissions and built environments?

Problems of scale

What, if anything, happened when something was the wrong size? When was something too big, or too small? And how were such problems solved by patrons and makers?

How does the disembodied viewing of medieval art through digital surrogates distort or assist in our perception of scale?

How can modern measuring techniques and digital technology enhance our understanding of medieval objects and buildings?

Applicants to the colloquium are encouraged to explore these and related issues from a diverse range of methodologies, analysing buildings and objects from across the Middle Ages (broadly understood in geographical and chronological terms). The Medieval Postgraduate Colloquium offers an opportunity for research students at all levels from universities across the UK and abroad to present, discuss and promote their research.

To apply, please send a proposal of up to 250 words for a 20-minute paper, together with a CV, to teresa.lane@courtauld.ac.uk and oliver.mitchell@courtauld.ac.uk no later than 16 November 2018.

Organised by Oliver Mitchell and Teresa Lane (The Courtauld Institute of Art)

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23rd Annual Medieval Postgraduate Student Colloquium: Collecting (in) the Middle Ages, The Courtauld Institute of Art, 16 February 2018

23rd Annual Medieval Postgraduate Student Colloquium: Collecting (in) the Middle Ages, The Courtauld Institute of Art, 16 February 2018

Free, booking required

The Courtauld Institute of Art’s 23rd Annual Medieval Postgraduate Colloquium invites speakers to consider the nature of medieval collections, the context of their creation and fruition, and their legacy – or disappearance – in the present.

Existing approaches to the subject help to understand the formation, dispersal, and reassembly of groupings of objects. However, broadening the scope of what a medieval collection is can open new paths of exploration. From immense palace networks to single-volume manuscripts, a wide range of objects can pose complex and exciting questions regarding how physical and conceptual similarity and proximity shaped making and meaning in the Middle Ages.

The Medieval Postgraduate Colloquium offers the opportunity for research students at all levels from universities across the UK and abroad to present and promote their research.

Organised by Costanza Beltrami (The Courtauld Institute of Art / The Auckland Project) and Maggie Crosland (The Courtauld Institute of Art) with the generous support of The Sackler Research Forum.

Programme

09.30 – 10.00:  Registration

10.00 – 10.10:  Welcome

Session 1: Assembled Objects — chaired by Teresa Lane

10.10 – 10.30: Gesner Las Casas Brito Filho (University of Leeds): Níðwundor’, terrible wonder: The Beowulf Manuscript as a compilation about the ‘East’ (Nowell Codex part in British Library Cotton Vitellius A.xv)

10.50 – 11.10: Krisztina Ilko (University of Cambridge): Collecting Miracles: Visualising the Early Saints’ Cult of the Augustinian Friars

11.10 – 11.30: Elizabeth Mattison (University of Toronto/ KIK-IRPA): The Collection as History: Collecting with and on the Reliquary Bust of Saint Lambert in Liège

11.10 – 11.30: Discussion

11:30 – 12:00: TEA / COFFEE BREAK – Seminar Rooms 1 & 2

Session 2: Strategies of Collecting — chaired by Charlotte Wytema 

12.00 – 12.20: Noah Smith (University of Kent): The Courtrai Chest: A Matter of Personal Collection

12.20 – 12.40: Oliver Mitchell (The Courtauld Institute of Art): Collecting relics, curating an image: regicide, martyrdom, and the sacrificial kingship of Louis IX in the Sainte Chapelle

12.40 – 13.00: Maria Lopez-Monis (The Courtauld Institute of Art): Collecting the profane: Conversion of earthly objects into reliquaries

13.00 – 13.20: Discussion

13.20 – 14.30: LUNCH (provided for speakers only in Seminar Room 1)

Session 3: Collaborating across media — chaired by Nicholas Flory

14.30 – 14.50: Maria Harvey (University of Cambridge): Across time and space: Byzantin(ising) objects in the hands of the Del Balzo Orsini

14.50 – 15.10: Sophia Ong (Rutgers University/INHA): Autres petiz Joyaulx et Reliquiaires pendans: Pendants and the Collecting of Jewelry in the Valois Courts

15.10 – 15.30: Adriana Concin (The Courtauld Institute of Art): Collecting medieval likenesses: Archduke Ferdinand II and his Genealogy of Tyrolian Landesfürsten

15.30 – 15.50: Discussion

15.50 – 16.20: TEA / COFFEE BREAK – Seminar Rooms 1 & 2

Session 4: Spaces of Display — chaired by Harry Prance

16.20 – 16.40: Lesley Milner (The Courtauld Institute of Art): From Medieval treasure room to Renaissance wunderkammer: Sir William Sharrington’s strong room at Lacock Abbey

16.40 – 17.00: Sarah Randeraad (University of Amsterdam): Medii Aevii, Medio Evo, Tempi di Mezzo: ‘Amorphous’ Middle Ages in 19th century Florentine private and public display

17.00 – 17.30: Discussion

17.30 – 17.45: Closing remarks: Joanna Cannon (The Courtauld Institute of Art)

17.45: RECEPTION (Front Hall)

With special thanks to Michael Carter for his contribution and support for the colloquium.

Forthcoming Exhibition: Saint Louis (Paris, 2014-2015)

Forthcoming Exhibition: Saint Louis
Paris, 8 October 2014 – 11 January 2015                   

sainte_chapelleKing Louis IX (1214-1270) was a personality that exercised an unusually high amount of influence throughout the medieval West. Few other French kings possessed a comparable charisma, and no other was canonised. Louis IX’s double identity as a king and a saint created an almost mythical figure, whose ideological instrumentalisation obscured his actual character.
In 2014, on occasion of the eight centenary of the king’s birth, the imprints of Louis IX, both within the domaines of political action and royal artistic patronage, will be revisited. A selection of 130 works of art of exceptionally high quality, coming from some of the most renowned French collections (Louvre, Cluny, Orsay, Archives Nationales and BnF), and accompanied by rare manuscripts, ivories and reliquaries kept outside of France (United States, Italy, Netherlands, Vatican State), will bear witness to the greatness of Parisian art under the reign of Louis IX.

The Sainte-Chapelle which was erected at the heart of the royal palace in order to treasure the Passion relics and which is one of the most elegant expressions of Gothic architecture, will be one of the highlights of the exhibition parcours.

Further highlights to be expected:

  • The Treasure of the Sainte-Chapelle
  • A previously unpublished 3D-reconstruction of the Palais de la Cité in the 13th century
  • Original stained glass windows from the Sainte-Chapelle, in storage since the 19th century and now restored
  • Rarely exhibited artworks
  • Reconstitution of artistic ensembles nowadays dispersed

Commissariat: Pierre-Yves Le Pogam, Chief Conservator at the Musée du Louvre.
Catalogue: Saint Louis, with a foreword by Jacques Le Goff and edited by Pierre-Yves Le Pogam. Editions du patrimoine.