Call for Papers | Gothic: Culture, Subculture, Counterculture

Posted in Calls for Papers by Editor on August 31, 2012

From St Mary’s University College:

Gothic: Culture, Subculture, Counterculture
Strawberry Hill House, 8-9 March 2013

Proposals due by 30 October 2012

Horace Walpole’s Strawberry Hill, Twickenham, London,
built between 1749 and 1776; restoration completed in 2010

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This conference, held in the Gothic mansion at Strawberry Hill, west London, will interrogate the many and varied cultures of the Gothic that were largely set in train by the owner of this mansion, Horace Walpole, in the mid-eighteenth century. As Walpole’s projects well exemplify – an aesthetic rebellion against a classical orthodoxy, which nonetheless looked implicitly to the restoration of some former social order – Gothic’s cultural poetics have always been difficult to place politically.

To what degree have Gothic tendencies in literature, art, architecture and screen media been participants in, adjuncts to, contesters of, or alternatives to cultural and political mainstreams, and how might such relationships be assessed by historians and critics? If Gothic was the Enlightenment’s naughty, child, to what extent is its rebelliousness mental or political, and is it ultimately co-opted by the order that it appears to resist?

This is a multi-disciplinary conference, and proposals for papers are invited in response to such questions in the fields, amongst others, of literature, screen media, art, architecture and popular culture. Participants will be offered the chance to see Horace Walpole’s Gothic mansion, now resplendent in its recently-renovated state, and to dine there during the conference. Preference will be given to papers that are suitable for an enthusiastic amateur audience, as well as specialists in the appropriate field. A bursary will be offered to cover conference fees for the best proposal by a postgraduate student.

200-word proposals for papers of 20-25 minutes, should be sent, by 30 October 2012 to:
Ms Jessica Jeske
St Mary’s University College
Waldegrave Road
Strawberry Hill
London TW1 4SX

Confirmed Speakers
• Michael Snodin (The Victoria and Albert Museum)
• John Bowen (University of York)
• Avril Horner (Kingston University)
• Allan Simmons (St Mary’s University College, London)

Display | Dead Standing Things at Tate Britain

Posted in catalogues, exhibitions by Editor on August 30, 2012

I was fortunate enough to visit this terrific display earlier in the summer, but for anyone who hasn’t seen it, impressive points of access are available online, offering a fine model for extending an exhibition’s usefulness well beyond the physical site of the museum. A page from the University of York provides an online record, and the first-rate publication edited by Tim Batchelor with contributions by Caroline Good, Claudine van Hensbergen, Peter Moore, and Debra Pring is available free of charge as a PDF file. -CH

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From Tate Britain:

Dead Standing Things: Still Life 1660-1740
Tate Britain, London, 21 May — 16 September 2012

Charles Collins, Lobster on a Delft Dish
oil on canvas, 1738 (London: Tate)

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A familiar genre today, still life painting became established in Britain in the late seventeenth century. Writing in the 1650s, the author William Sanderson referred to such paintings as ‘dead-standing-things’, the term ‘still life’ (from the Dutch ‘stilleven’) only appearing in the following decades. Characterised as the detailed depiction of inanimate objects, the genre had been established in the Netherlands early in the seventeenth century and its introduction into Britain was through the work and influence of Dutch incomer artists. Pieter van Roestraten arrived in London from Amsterdam in the mid-1660s and became known for his ‘portraits’ of objects, particularly silver; another Dutchman known by the anglicised name of Edward Collier was active in London from the 1690s.

This period saw a shift in the way artists sold their works. The old system of artistic patronage by and commissions from the wealthy elite was, from the later 1680s, augmented by newly-emerging auctions. Sales at taverns, coffee houses and commercial exchanges provided artists with new opportunities. It also meant the ‘middling’ class of professionals and merchants could purchase art to furnish their homes and satisfy their social ambitions, with affordable and easily available still lifes a popular choice.

This is the second of two displays at Tate Britain organised as part of Court, Country, City: British Art, 1660-1735, a major research project run by the University of York and Tate Britain, and funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council. This display has been devised by curator Tim Batchelor.

Call for Papers | 2013 BSECS Conference

Posted in Calls for Papers by Editor on August 29, 2012

From the British Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies:

2013 BSECS Conference — Credit, Money and the Market
St Hugh’s College, Oxford, 3-5 January 2013

Proposals due by 30 September 2012

The annual meeting of the British Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies is Europe’s largest and most prestigious annual conference dealing with all aspects of the history, literature, and culture of the long eighteenth century. We invite proposals for papers and sessions dealing with any aspect of the long eighteenth century, not only in Britain, but also throughout Europe, North America, and the wider world. Proposals are invited for fully comprised panels of three or four papers, for roundtable sessions of up to five speakers, for individual papers, and for ‘alternative format’ sessions of your devising.

While proposals on all and any eighteenth-century topics are very welcome, this year the conference theme will be Credit, Money and the Market. We would thus particularly welcome proposals for panels and papers that address eighteenth-century understandings of Credit, Money and the Market, and their workings and effects, broadly conceived, throughout the long eighteenth century, at all levels of society, and in any part of the world. These might include, but will not be confined to: the meanings and significance given to Credit, Money and the Market in all fields from history, politics and religion, to the arts, literature, and philosophy; the way money is represented in the theatre, literature, philosophy and the arts; credit and reputation; debt and debtors; ‘capitalism’; ‘speculation’; financial ‘bubbles’; trade and business; ‘new money’; banks and financiers; ‘The Exchange’; investment; ‘moral economy’; and ‘the black economy’.

All enquiries regarding the academic programme of the conference should be addressed to the academic programme co-ordinator, Dr Corinna Wagner academic@bsecs.org.uk. To submit a proposal, please click here.

Keynote Speakers

Robert D. Hume — The Value of Money: Prices, Incomes, and Buying Power in Eighteenth-Century England

Julian Hopitt — Scottish Oeconomy and English Debts

Reviewed | Orientialism in Louis XIV’s France

Posted in books, reviews by Editor on August 28, 2012

Appearing some time ago, Nicholas Dew’s Orientialism in Louis XIV’s France is reviewed in the current issue of French History (by way of reminder of the upcoming ASECS deadline, it’s worth noting that at least three proposed panels at the 2013 conference relate to the theme of Europe’s engagement with Asia). As Julia Landweber notes in her review of Dew’s book for H-France Review 10 (July 2010): 437-40, readers should also consult Ina McCabe’s Orientalism in Early Modern France (Berg, 2008). Landweber writes: “McCabe aimed for an almost encyclopedic gathering of information, bringing in figures great and small alike for brief cameos,whereas Dew chose to focus his research on the deep analysis of a much narrower set of individuals. By happy fortune, Dew’s subjects barely overlap with McCabe’s; in consequence, the two works complement each other nicely. Read together, their theses essentially reinforce one another, and indicate that a consensus has been reached in terms of a new post-Saidian interpretation of ‘baroque Orientalism'” (439). -CH

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French History 26 (September 2012): 403-04.

Review of Nicholas Dew, Orientalism in Louis XIV’s France (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2009), 301 pages, ISBN: 9780199234844. $120.

Reviewed by Diane C. Margolf; posted online 28 July 2012

Historians of Europe’s Republic of Letters during the late seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries will welcome this book as a valuable addition to the field. Focusing on what he calls ‘baroque Orientalism’, Nicholas Dew explores the ways in which a small group of French scholars produced knowledge about China, India, and the Ottoman Empire before the Enlightenment of the later eighteenth century and the European empires of the modern era. Although the scholars’ research and publication efforts were often unsuccessful and always fraught with delays and complications, Dew’s analysis of the process they followed further enriches our understanding of intellectual and cultural activity in France under Louis XIV. . .

The full review is available here» (subscription required)

Applying for a Clark Fellowship

Posted in fellowships, opportunities by Editor on August 27, 2012

From the Clark:

Clark Fellowships
Applications due by 15 October 2012

The Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute combines a public art museum with a complex of research and academic programs, including a major art history library. The Clark is an international center for discussion on the nature of art and its history.

The Clark offers between fifteen and twenty Clark Fellowships each year, ranging in duration from six weeks to ten months. National and international scholars, critics, and museum professionals are welcome to propose projects that extend and enhance the understanding of the visual arts and their role in culture. Stipends are dependent on salary and sabbatical replacement needs. Housing in the Institute’s Scholars’ Residence, located across the street from the Clark, is also provided. Fellows are furnished with offices in the library, which contains a collection of 200,000 books and 700 periodicals. The Institute’s collections, its library, visual resources collection, and the Fellows’ program are housed together with the Williams College Graduate Program in the History of Art. The Clark is within walking distance of Williams College, its libraries, and its art museum. The Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art (MASS MoCA) is a ten-minute drive away.

Candidates must already have a Ph.D. or equivalent professional experience. The Clark does not award pre-doctoral fellowships, and given the intense competition for fellowships, we do not normally make awards to those who have received their Ph.D. within the last four years.

A number of special fellowships are also offered, as seen here»

Ethan Lasser Announced as New Curator of American Art at Harvard

Posted in museums by Editor on August 26, 2012

Ethan Lasser, the new curator of American Art at the Harvard Art Museums, completed his dissertation at Yale in 2007, writing on “Figures in the Grain: The Enlightenment of Anglo-American Furniture, 1660-1800.” Press release (dated 15 August 2012) . . .

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The Harvard Art Museums are pleased to announce the appointment of Ethan Lasser as Margaret S. Winthrop Associate Curator of American Art, effective September 18, 2012. Lasser will join the Art Museums’ Division of European and American Art.

Lasser’s innovative work as a curator and academic experience align well with the Art Museums’ teaching and research mission. From 2007 to the present, Lasser has been curator of the Chipstone Foundation in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, a research institute committed to advancing progressive scholarship in American art through exhibitions, publications, teaching, and public programming. In 2008, he reinstalled the foundation’s permanent galleries at the Milwaukee Art Museum, a 13,000-square-foot exhibition space for American paintings and decorative arts. He has also served as adjunct professor in the Department of Art History at the University of Wisconsin–Madison, where he initiated the Object Lab, a summer program for undergraduates focused on teaching American art and craft history through hands-on research with artifacts. Lasser is currently developing two new exhibitions—The Practice and Poetics of Repair and Makers: Craft and Industry in American Art—both of which explore his interest in art-making processes and materiality. Lasser, who graduated magna cum laude from Williams College, has a PhD in art history from Yale University. (more…)

Exhibition | The Epic and the Intimate: French Drawings

Posted in exhibitions by Editor on August 25, 2012

Press release (19 June 2012) from the Georgia Museum of Art:

The Epic and the Intimate: French Drawings from the
John D. Reilly Collection at the Snite Museum of Art
Flint Institute of Arts, Flint, Michigan, 5 May — 29 July 2012
Georgia Museum of Art, Athens, 18 August — 3 November 2012
Crocker Art Museum, Sacramento, California, 30 June — 29  September 2013

Curated by Cheryl Snay and Lynn Boland

François Boucher, Boreas and Oreithyia, ca. 1749 or ca. 1769, black chalk (Snite Museum of Art, University of Notre Dame)

The Georgia Museum of Art (GMOA) at the University of Georgia will present the exhibition The Epic and the Intimate: French Drawings from the John D. Reilly Collection at the Snite Museum of Art from August 18 to November 3, 2012. Organized by Cheryl K. Snay at the Snite Museum of Art at the University of Notre Dame, this exhibition illustrates the history of French drawing from before the foundation of the Royal Academy of Painting and Sculpture in 1648 through the French Revolution of 1789 and its subsequent reforms of the 1800s. It includes works by Simon Vouet, Antoine Watteau, François Boucher, Jean-Honoré Fragonard and Jacques-Louis David.

“Each of these drawings is exquisite in its own right, and as a collection, they offer a compelling overview of the French Academy,” said Lynn Boland, GMOA’s Pierre Daura Curator of European Art and the in-house curator of the exhibition.

The drawings on display offer an opportunity to see a range of media, including chalk, colored chalks, ink and crayon; a variety of favored subjects, such as narrative compositions, portraits, landscapes and genre scenes; and types of drawings from figure and drapery studies to quick sketches of initial ideas to complex, multifigured, highly developed compositional works. From the grand “machines” that narrate epic history, such as Michael Dorigny’s Sacrifice to Juno or Anne-Louis Girodet de Roussy-Trioson’s Christ Led from Pilate, to the celebrations of singular, intimate moments, such as Watteau’s seated figure or Honoré Daumier’s observation of a woman putting bread in an oven, The Epic and the Intimate demonstrates an extensive range of both subject and medium. Later artists, including Pierre-Paul Prud’hon, Théodore Rousseau and Edgar Degas signal the transition into the modern era that glorified the individual and the local.

Snay explains, “Before drawing gained its autonomy from painting, sculpture and architecture in the 20th century, it was regarded as a means of ordering reality. It was understood to be the fundamental basis of all creative activity.” Many of the artists whose works appear in the exhibition belonged to the Académie royale de peinture et de sculpture (Royal Academy of Painting and Sculpture) in Paris, founded by the French government in 1648. Snay continues, “By holding government-sponsored exhibitions and commissioning large-scale projects, the Royal Academy monopolized the art market and became a model for many other academies in Europe and North America, ensuring France’s influence on material culture into the early 1900s.”

New Title | Inganno – The Art of Deception

Posted in books by Editor on August 24, 2012

To judge from the table of contents, I think this is really a collection of essays on the sixteenth century, though it does conclude with an eighteenth-century piece by Kristin Campbell, “‘Such is Picture Dealing’: Noel Joseph Desenfans (1745-1807) and the Perils of Purchasing in 18th-Century London.” -CH

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From Ashgate:

Sharon Gregory and Sally Anne Hickson, eds., Inganno – The Art of Deception: Imitation, Reception, and Deceit in Early Modern Art (Aldershot: Ashgate, 2012), 216 pages, 9781409431497, $105.

The essays contained in this volume address issues surrounding the use, dissemination, and reception of copies and even deliberate forgeries within the history of art, focusing on paintings, prints and sculptures created and sold from the sixteenth century to the eighteenth century. The essays also probe contemporary sensibilities about the art of inganno, or deception, sometimes even viewed as pleasurable deception, in the making and viewing of copies among artists and their audiences.

Through specific case studies, the contributors explore the fine line between imitations and fakes, distinctions between the practice of copying as a discipline within the workshop and the willful misrepresentation of such copies on the part of artists, agents and experts in the evolving art market. They attempt to address the notion of when a copy becomes a fake and when thoughtful repetition of a model, emulation through imitation, becomes deliberate fraud. The essays also document developing taxonomies of professionals within the growth of the “business of art” from the workshops of the Renaissance to the salons and galleries of eighteenth-century London. As a whole, this volume opens up a new branch of art historical research concerned with the history and purpose of the copy.

Philadelphia Museum of Art Acquires ‘Fox and the Grapes’ Table

Posted in museums by Editor on August 23, 2012

Thanks to Courtney Barnes for passing along this press release from the Philadelphia Museum of Art (dated 3 August 2012) . . .

The Philadelphia Museum of Art has agreed to purchase the exceptional mahogany dressing table that has been on loan to the Museum for 36 years. Made in Philadelphia in the late 1760s or early 1770s, the table is the mate to the Museum’s monumental high chest, which was donated in 1957 by Amy Howe Steel Greenough. The dynamic carved decoration on both the high chest and the dressing table depicts a scene from Aesop’s fable of “The Fox and the Grapes” on their central drawers. The impressive proportions of these remarkable examples of 18th-century craftsmanship echo the architectural framework of the bedchamber for which they were made. Together, they epitomize the elegance and sophistication that distinguish Philadelphia furniture as the finest produced in British colonial North America.

“The Museum has now realized its cherished dream of keeping ‘The Fox and the Grapes’ dressing table together with its companion high chest,” said Timothy Rub, the Museum’s George D. Widener Director and Chief Executive Officer. “The two anchor our galleries of early American art; and now that their future together is secure, we can continue to display and interpret them as superlative artistic achievements.”

The high chest was known to Museum curators early in the 20th century when it was borrowed from Mary Fell Howe for the 1924 exhibition Philadelphia Chippendale. Lauded for its stately presence, highly figured mahogany, abundant carved ornament, and the rare depiction of a narrative from one of Aesop’s fables, the high chest also generated curiosity about whether or not its companion piece—the dressing table—was still in existence. “The Fox and the Grapes” dressing table was soon discovered and made its debut in William MacPherson Hornor, Jr.’s 1935 publication The Blue Book of Philadelphia Furniture: William Penn to George Washington. Joseph Kindig, Jr., the preeminent York, Pennsylvania, furniture and gun dealer, purchased the dressing table from Miss Eliza Davids in the late 1930s. Though Kindig was an antiques dealer, the dressing table was not offered for sale. Instead, it remained in the Kindig’s private home. Mr. Kindig died in 1971, and soon thereafter a friend of the Museum alerted curators to the whereabouts of the coveted “Fox and Grapes” dressing table. The Kindigs agreed to lend the dressing table so it could be displayed next to its high chest in 1976 for Philadelphia: Three Centuries of American Art, the great survey celebrating American art exhibited at the Museum during the bicentennial year. The two looked superb together—each had found its accompaniment—and after the exhibition closed, the dressing table remained on loan to the Museum. (more…)

ARIAH Prize for Online Publishing

Posted in journal articles, nominations by Editor on August 22, 2012

From the Association of Research Institutes in Art History (ARIAH) . . .

ARIAH Prize for Online Publishing
Nomination due by 1 September 2012

ARIAH looks for new initiatives to promote art historical research throughout the world, and invites nominations and self-nominations for the ARIAH Prize for Online Publishing. This award, which carries a $1,000 prize, seeks to encourage and promote high scholarly standards in online publishing in all fields of art history. The prize will be awarded annually to the author(s) of a distinguished article or essay published online in the past three years in the form of an e-journal or other short-form e-publication which advances the study of art history and visual culture. The article should either appear exclusively online, or should be substantially distinct from any print version, creatively capitalizing on the potential of digital publishing.

The competition is open to anyone, with the exception of delegates to ARIAH. Entries may be submitted by the author(s), or by others nominating authors for the prize, including publishers. Entries must be accompanied by the ARIAH Prize Entry Form.

Online publications must have appeared within three years of the submission date. All languages will be considered, but non-English submissions must also provide an English translation. Closing date for entries: September 1, 2012. Prize-winners will be notified by December 1, 2012. Please direct any questions to ARIAHprize@ariah.info

Articles and projects should contain substantial original scholarship and research, and enrich our understanding of art history and visual culture. Submissions will be considered that contribute new ideas and innovative approaches to the online presentation of information, and which exploit the potential offered by digital technology. Entries will be judged by a committee of ARIAH members.

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