Exhibition and Symposium: Early American Maps and Prints

Posted in conferences (to attend), exhibitions by Editor on May 8, 2011

From The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation:

More than Meets the Eye: Maps and Prints of Early America
DeWitt Wallace Decorative Arts Museum, Williamsburg, VA, 26 March 2011 — April 2012

The exhibition features 35 maps, portraits, and other graphic images that invite the viewer to look more deeply into the subtle messages delivered by artisans depicting America. Maps, in particular, were regarded as scientific and authoritative documents, imparting a perception of power and control over the environment. As such, they also became important tools for swaying public opinion. The factors that motivated the production of individual maps often become apparent through close scrutiny of their decorative features and the information their creators chose to include–or omit.

In addition to objects from the Colonial Williamsburg collections, the exhibition includes an outstanding documentary source for the 1920s restoration of the historic town—the “Frenchman’s” map, loaned by the College of William and Mary. The Connecticut Historical Society has also kindly agreed to loan their copy of Abel Buell’s A NEW and correct Map of the
, the first map of the thirteen states to be
published after the Congress of the Confederation ratified the treaty on
January 14, 1784.

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Symposium: More than Meets the Eye: Maps and Prints of Early America
DeWitt Wallace Decorative Arts Museum, Williamsburg, VA, 16-18 October 2011

In conjunction with the exhibition, Colonial Williamsburg will sponsor a symposium from October 16-18, 2011 that will feature lectures focusing on the men who created these objects, how they assembled and disseminated their information, and the factors that motivated them to create powerful and influential images. Speakers will include Philip Burden, Paul Cohen, Louis De Vorsey, Matthew Edney, William Gartner, and Henry Taliaferro. The conference begins with an opening reception Sunday evening followed by two days of lectures, Monday and Tuesday. A complete conference agenda will be posted as soon as it is available.

Call for Papers: Universities Art Association of Canada (UAAC/AAUC)

Posted in Calls for Papers by Editor on May 8, 2011

The 2011 annual conference for the Universities Art Association of Canada (UAAC/AAUC) will be hosted by Carleton University in Ottawa, Ontario, from Thursday, October 27th, to Saturday, October 29th. The following list of sessions suggests the possibilities for eighteenth-century papers. A one-page proposal and CV should be sent to the session chair by May 15. Presenters must become members of UAAC. For more information and the full call for papers (including the French), please visit the conference website.

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Drawings from the Fifteenth Century to the Present Day
Chairs: Jen Diorio and Janina M. Knight, 2jmk1@queensu.ca

This session calls for papers that explore topics relating to the important role of drawing in art and architecture. Papers can discuss the role of the drawing as a preparatory step in the artistic process, or how a drawing can be created and exist as a work of art in its own right. How can drawings aid art historians in understanding the true intentions of artists and architects? How can drawings be used to reveal otherwise unknown aspects of an artist’s working process? In what ways can drawings enlighten us as to the meaning of particular works of art or architectural designs? We invite submissions that discuss the role of drawing in European art and architecture from the fifteenth century to the present day.

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“The Barbarous Gaudy Goût”: Encounters between East and West in Early Modern Art
Chairs: Je Eric Weichel, 6ejw@queensu.ca, and Allison Fisher, 1anf@queensu.ca

In 1749, Elizabeth Montagu wrote “we must all seek the barbarous gaudy goût of the Chinese; and fat-headed Pagods and shaking Mandarins bear the prize from the finest works of antiquity.” Montagu’s satirical description of chinoiserie is one of the most famous commentaries on the process of aesthetic and artistic contact between Asia and Europe. This session seeks papers reflecting the cultural communication between East Asia and Western Europe in a range of diverse media, including ceramics, painting, textiles, pattern and lacquer. We are specifically interested in the dialogue between China and Japan and Britain, France and Italy from the fourteenth to the nineteenth centuries. Subjects could include: activities of the East India Company or the VOC, chinoiseries, textile trade and conservation, landscape design, architecture, tea drinking and ceremonies, consumption of exotic commodities, food history, portraiture, costume history, mission work, archaeological investigations, and Impressionist japonisme.

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The Global Baroque in Postcolonial Perspective
Chairs: Stephanie Dickey and Gauvin Alexander Bailey, dickeys@queensu.ca

This session seeks papers concerned with visual and material culture around the world in the period ca. 1580- 1750. In this era of colonial and economic expansion, artists and architects frequently traveled outside their home countries for work or inspiration, while paintings and prints functioned as internationally-traded commodities. We are especially interested in case studies that explore the creative dynamic produced by interactions between artists, artworks, and/or consumers of art from divergent cultures. This might include intersections both within the European continent (e.g., Netherlandish artists in Rome or Prague) and between Europe and the wider world (e.g., French architecture in Quebec, European artists in Asia or the Ottoman Empire, etc.).

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Landscape of Ruins
Chairs: Karla McManus, karla.mcmanus@gmail.com, and Luke Nicholson, ld_nicho@alcor.concordia.ca

The ruin is a charged concept, evoking both wreckage and the possibility of renewal. In architectural and landscape painting, drawing and printmaking, the ruin has a long history as an emblem of civilization’s decay, the sublime possibilities of destruction, and a warning against hubris. More recently, ruination has returned to envision the future collapse of contemporary civilization, brought on by ecological, cultural or political disaster. Time-based technologies, such as photography, video and film, have emerged as central in the representation of ruination today. Proposals are invited on any aspect of the landscapes of ruin, in any medium and historical period.

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The Signature of the Artist
Chairs: Franziska Gottwald and David de Witt, franziskagottwald@googlemail.com

Signatures of artists have been known since Antiquity, and are often found as name, monogram, or symbol. In the Renaissance, many signatures were written in Latin and sometimes expanded into an assertion of the artist’s intellectual and manual work. But such inscriptions are not the only kind of authorial signature to be identified in art. The artist’s typified style of painting or etching can also serve as a signature. This panel seeks papers that discuss the different meanings of “signature” from a range of periods and contexts, and addresses questions such as: artistic commentary, self-representation, and the aesthetics of the signature of the artist.

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Prints and Cross-Cultural Encounters, 1600-1850
Chair: Stéphane Roy, stephane_roy@carleton.ca

In recent years, “globalization” has coloured the historian’s practice, leading scholars to widen their scope in order to get a more comprehensive look at modern and early modern societies. Evidence of cross-cultural connections seems indeed to abound, from the propagation of Caravaggio’s style through the paintings of foreign artists to the use of printed text to disseminate ideas during the Enlightenment. But perhaps no other medium can better testify to the vigour of cultural exchanges than printmaking itself. As works of portable dimension, prints had the natural ability of connecting cultures, shaping and fashioning ideas; they could also be reinterpreted and given new meanings in different cultural environments. Preliminary evidence indicates that interactions between European (and, later, North-American) printmakers resulted in cultural transfers that have not been without consequences on the shaping of national identities. Just as with literature and political theory (areas enriched and transformed by “international” dialogue), the effects of cosmopolitism were equally felt in the world of visual arts. Measuring those effects, however, has yet to be done. How did these elements of intercultural connections translate into visual terms? Are there indications pointing to the existence of a common iconographical lexicon based on shared values or ideals? Does the practice of printmaking itself challenge the long-standing tradition of “national schools”?

By using the print medium as a prime vehicle for cross-cultural encounters, this panel welcomes proposals in both English and French dealing with the following issues: circulation of prints in different national contexts; visual recycling of specific visual motifs; existence of recurring themes and common visual codes; advertisement of foreign prints in newspapers; role of print sellers as cross-cultural intermediaries; artists travel and correspondence; development of national styles using “foreign” engraving techniques; dissemination of painters’ work in different national contexts; international art trade; and representation of otherness in prints.

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