Enfilade

Conference | Attingham Looks to the Future of the Country House

Posted in conferences (to attend) by Editor on September 30, 2012

Looking Ahead: The Future of the Country House
The Attingham Trust 60th Anniversary Conference
The Royal Geographical Society, London, 12-13 October 2012

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The Attingham Trust celebrates its sixtieth anniversary with a conference considering the current state of historic houses and house museums across three continents, in the United Kingdom, the Republic of Ireland, the United States and Australia. With the generous support of the Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art speakers from each of those countries discuss successful current developments as well as the varying problems that each country faces – including the rapid decline of the traditional house museum in the USA, the attempts to preserve houses in the Republic of Ireland, and the developing role of the historic house in Australian conservation. The British country house is studied from the point of view of private and public owners including impressive case studies and depressing cuts in funding, and illuminated from an academic, curatorial and dramatic perspective, from Nikolaus Pevsner to Downton Abbey.

This conference is open to all (alumni and non-­‐alumni) and promises to be a very stimulating event and we hope to see as many of you there as possible. The cost of the conference is £55 per day, to include all refreshments. The programme, a booking form and our Paypal link (if you wish to pay this way) can be found on the Conference page of our website. Alternative payment methods are detailed on the booking form. NB: Every booking and payment must be accompanied by a fully-­‐ completed and returned booking form.

There will be a special rate of £30 per day for students (under-­‐graduate and post-­‐graduate) studying History of Art, Architecture, Heritage Studies or a related subject. Places are limited. Please apply stating your place of study and subject.

There will be an alumni event on the Friday evening at the House of Lords. A ticket for this event is included with attendance on at least one day of the conference. If you are an alumnus and unable to come to the conference but want to come to the evening event, you are extremely welcome but please note that you will need to purchase a ticket for £55. Places at this event are limited so please apply for a ticket from Rebecca Parker sooner rather than later. For all further enquiries please contact Rebecca Parker at rebecca.parker@attinghamtrust.org or +44 20 7253 9057.

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F R I D A Y ,  1 2  O C T O B E R  2 0 1 2

9.00  Registration and coffee

9.45  Welcome
John Lewis, Chairman, The Attingham Trust and Annabel Westman, Director, The Attingham Trust

10.00  Confessions of a Country House Snooper: Tim Knox interviews John Harris
Tim Knox, Director, The Sir John Soane’s Museum John Harris, Architectural Historian

Session Changing Perceptions of the Country House in Britain
Chair: Martin Postle, Assistant Director, Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art

10.50  Studying the Country House: Views from the Academy
Giles Waterfield, The Attingham Trust

11.25  The Country House in The Buildings of England, 1951-­‐2011
Charles O’Brien, Series Editor, Pevsner Architectural Guides

12.00  Country House Collections: What Do They Mean Today?
Christopher Ridgway, Curator, Castle Howard

12.45  LUNCH

Session  New Visions for Old Houses: The Private Perspective
Chair: Edward Harley, President of the Historic Houses Association

14.00  Introduction
Edward Harley, President of the Historic Houses Association

14.15  The Buccleuch Estates
The Duke of Buccleuch and Queensberry, KBE DL

14.50  Burghley House in the Twenty-­‐First Century
Miranda Rock, Burghley House

15.45  Perspectives on the Historic House
Julian Fellowes, Writer and broadcaster

17.00  Close
Alumni Drinks at the House of Lords

S  A T U R D A Y ,  1 3  O C T O B E R  2 0 1 2

9.00 Registration and coffee

Session Houses in Trust: The Country House in Public/Charitable Ownership
Chair: Giles Waterfield, The Attingham Trust

9.30  The Crisis of the Country House in Local Government Care
Jeremy Musson, Architectural Historian

10.05  The National Trust and Its Country Houses
Lisa White, Chairman of the National Trust Arts Panel

10.40  Presenting the Historic House
Anna Keay, Director, The Landmark Trust

Session  The Irish Country House
Chair: John Redmill, Irish Georgian Society

11.45  “Tombstones of a departed ascendancy”: The Irish Country House since Independence
Terence Dooley, Director of CSHIHE, National University of Ireland, Maynooth

12.20  The Work of the Irish Heritage Trust
Kevin Baird, Director, Irish Heritage Trust

13.00  LUNCH

Session – Time to Rethink? The House Museum in the United States
Chair: Peter Trippi, Editor, Fine Art Connoisseur

14.15  Falling Down: The Current State of the Historic House in America
Sean Sawyer, Executive Director, The Royal Oak Foundation

14.40  Newport: A Case Study in Preserving Great Houses, Great Landscapes and a Great City
John Tschirch, Director of Museum Affairs, Newport Preservation Society

15.15  The American House Museum in Historical Perspective
Craig Hanson, Associate Professor, Calvin College, Michigan

Session – The Australian Country House: Past and Future
Chair: His Excellency Mr John Dauth, High Commissioner for Australia

16.00  The Country House in Australia: Setting the Scene
Gini Lee, Professor, University of Melbourne

16.30  The Country House in Contemporary Australia
Mark Taylor, Professor, University of Newcastle, Australia

Conference | The Trade in Luxury & Luxury in Trade

Posted in conferences (to attend) by Editor on September 29, 2012

From the conference programme:

Le Commerce du Luxe – Le Luxe du Commerce: Production, Exposition et Circulation
Musée Gadagne, Lyon, 21-23 November 2012

Le colloque international pluridisciplinaire Le commerce du luxe – Le luxe du commerce, organisé par le LARHRA (UMR 5190 Laboratoire de Recherche Historique Rhône-Alpes), se tiendra aux musées Gadagne, 1 place du petit Collège, à Lyon, les mercredi 21, jeudi 22 et vendredi 23 novembre 2012. Tant par le sujet, la date que le lieu choisis, le colloque prendra place, à part entière, dans les manifestations de l’Automne de la soie 2012. Nous voulons exprimer ainsi, de manière visible, l’engagement des historiens de l’Université de Lyon dans la valorisation de l’héritage des industries de la soie, industrie de luxe s’il en est, une des richesses emblématiques de la métropole rhodanienne.

Ces industries ont en effet fortement participé à la structuration de l’espace régional par les flux de capitaux, de matières et d’hommes qu’elles ont générés autour de la métropole lyonnaise dans une vaste zone couvrant totalement ou partiellement les départements de l’actuelle région Rhône-Alpes et même au-delà. Elles ont contribué à l’adaptation progressive des populations aux exigences de l’industrie, à l’accumulation de savoir-faire et au développement de l’esprit d’entreprise. Enfin, le commerce des soieries et celui des soies, dont les horizons ont très tôt dépassé les limites nationales, ont été des facteurs majeurs de l’ouverture de Lyon et de la région Rhône-Alpes aux horizons internationaux.

ARGUMENTAIRE

Comment se produisent, s’exposent, se diffusent et se consomment les produits du luxe ? Le but du colloque est de revenir sur la question de la spécialisation progressive d’un commerce voué aux objets précieux qui concourent à l’embellissement de la personne ou du cadre de vie. Il entend être une manifestation largement ouverte d’un point de vue chronologique, spatial et disciplinaire, faisant appel à des spécialistes d’horizons différents.

Cette approche interdisciplinaire du marché du luxe sur la longue durée, de la fin du Moyen Age à nos jours, permettra de confronter les expériences et de mettre en relief les permanences et les mutations. Le luxe a souvent été cantonné aux productions des beaux-arts ; il s’agira ici de montrer la richesse et la diversité de ce qui était (et reste) compris sous cette appellation et d’observer comment se sont progressivement mis en place des marchés spécialisés. Ce colloque développera trois approches spécifiques: la circulation spatiale du luxe (marchands et marchandises), l’économie du luxe (concevoir, produire, vendre), les circulations sociales du luxe (luxe et demi-luxe).

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M E R C R E D I ,  2 1  N O V E M B R E  2 0 1 2

I — MARCHANDS ET MARCHANDISES. LA CIRCULATION SPATIALE DU LUXE

9:00 Accueil

9:30  Discours introductifs

10:00  Ingrid HOUSSAYE MICHIENZI, (FRAMESPA-UMR 5136, Toulouse Le Mirail) –De L’Afrique Subsaharienne aux Marchés Européens: Les Compagnies Marchandes Florentines et le Commerce des Plumes d’Autruche (Fin XIVe — Début XVe Siècle)

10:30  Wilfried ZEISLER (Université Paris IV) — De New York à Saint-Pétersbourg: Le Commerce International du Luxe à La Belle-Époque

11:00 Pause

11:30  Lavinia MADDALUNO (Université de Cambridge) — Scenarios of Trade: Eighteenth-Century British Watches, Clocks, Telescopes, and the Two ‘Easts’

12:00  Fabienne MOREAU (Veuve Clicquot, Groupe LVMH) — Le Commerce du Champagne au XIXe Siècle: Sur la Piste des Bouteilles de Champagne Veuve Clicquot Découvertes dans une Épave de la Mer Baltique en 2010

12:30  Discussion

13:00  Déjeuner

14:30  Diego DAVIDE (Université de Naples Suor Orsolo Benincasa) — Production, Circulation, and Consumption of Gold and Silver in the XVIIIth Century in the Kingdom of Naples

15:00  Anne MONTENACH (Aix-Marseille Université) — Vendre le Luxe en Province: Circuits Officiels et Réseaux Parallèles dans le Dauphiné du XVIIIe Siècle

15:30  Pause

15:45 Federica VERATELLI (Université Paris-Est Créteil Val de Marne) — Les Marchés du Luxe et Leurs Réseaux à la Renaissance: Le Cas des Hommes d’Affaires Italiens dans les Flandres, 1477-1530

16:15  Nadia MATRINGE (European University Institute) — Le Commerce du Luxe à Lyon au Milieu du XVIe Siècle: Un Monopole Italien?

16:45  Discussion

J E U D I ,  2 2  N O V E M B R E  2 0 1 2

II — L’ÉCONOMIE DU LUXE : CONCEVOIR, PRODUIRE, VENDRE

8:30  Accueil

9:00  Eugénie BRIOT (Université Paris-Est Marne-la-Vallée) — La Parfumerie Parisienne du XIXe Siècle: Fabrique d’Une Industrie Delux

9:30  Florence CHARPIGNY (CNRS-LARHRA, Lyon) — Luxe en Images, Images du Luxe: Les Soieries F. Ducharne dans l’Officiel de la Couture et de la Mode, 1921-1972

10:00  Ekaterina BULGAKOVA (Université d’État de Moscou Lomonossov) — Le Commerce de Luxe Français à Moscou et Saint-Pétersbourg du XIXe Siècle: Topographie, Exposition, Perception

10:30  Pause

10:45  Stéphane LEMBRÉ (Université d’Artois-IUFM Nord-Pas de Calais) — Former les Ouvriers du Luxe: La Société d’Encouragement à L’Art et à l’Industrie au Service du Savoir-Faire, 1889-1973

11:15  Anne PERRIN-KHELISSA (Université catholique de l’Ouest, Angers) — De l’Agrément au Goût: Justifier les Manufactures d’État sous la Révolution — Sèvres, Gobelins, Savonnerie

11:45  Discussion

12:30  Déjeuner

14:30  Sophie RAUX (Université Lille 3) — François Verbeelen: Un Entrepreneur Exceptionnel du Loteries d’Oeuvres d’Art et d’Objets de Luxe dans les Flandres à Fin du XVIe Siècle et au Début du XVIIe Siècle

15:00  Barbara FURLOTTI (The Warburg Institute, Londres) — Mapping the Market for Antiquities in Early Modern Italy: Networks and Practices

15:30  Maud VILLERET (Université de Nantes) — Les Confiseurs au XVIIIe Siècle: Les Stratégies de Vente d’Un Luxe Sucré

16:00  Pause

16:15  Anne WEGENER-SLEESWIJK (Université Paris I) — Corruption, Vice et Vin: La Lutte pour un Marché de Luxe Traditionnel aux Provinces-Unies, XVIIIe Siècle

16:45  Philippe MEYZIE (Université Bordeaux 3) — Produits des Terroirs et Marché du Luxe Alimentaire XVIIIe-Début XIXe Siècle

17:15  Discussion

V E N D R E D I ,  2 3  N O V E M B R E  2 0 1 2

III — LUXE ET DEMI-LUXE. LES CIRCULATIONS SOCIALES DU LUXE

8:30  Accueil

9:00  Manuel CHARPY (CNRS-IRHIS, Lille 3) — La Rareté Partagée: Commerces et Consommations des Antiquités et des Curiosités au XIXe Siècle — Paris, Londres, et New York

9:00  Sabine PASDELOU (Université Paris-Ouest Nanterre la Défense) — Le Japonisme Popularisé des Manufactures de Céramique: La Diffusion du Demi-Luxe en France entre 1880 et 1950

10:00  Marcia POINTON (Université de Manchester) — The Diamond Engagement Ring and the Relativity of Luxury

10:30  Pause

10:45  Audrey GLÉONEC (Université Paris-Ouest Nanterre la Défense) — La Démocratisation du Mueble de Style au XIXe Siècle

11:15  Camille MESTDAGH (Université Paris IV) — Curiosités et Luxe dans l’Ameublement du XIXe Siècle: Le Commerce et l’Oeuvre des Beurdeley

11:45  Discussion

12:30  Déjeuner

14:30  Katie SCOTT (The Courtauld Institute of Art, Londres) and Hannah WILLIAMS (St John’s College, Oxford) — Everyday Lives and Luxury Objects: François Boucher’s Shells and Charles-Antoine Coypel’s Watch

15:00  Jon STOBART (Université de Northampton) — The Luxury of Learning: Books, Knowledge, and Display in the English Country House, 1730-1800

15:30  Pause

15:45  Amanda PHILLIPS (Institute of Iranian Studies, University of St Andrews in Scotland) — The Sincerest Form of Flattery: Ottoman Furnishing Velvets and Their Imitators, 1600-1800

16:15  George LAZAR (Institut d’Histoire N. Iorga, Bucarest) — Les Marchands de Luxe, Le Luxe des Marchands dans l’Europe Orientale, XVIIe-XVIIIe Siècles

16:45  Discussion

Forthcoming Book | The First Modern Museums of Art

Posted in books by Editor on September 28, 2012

Due out this November from The Getty:

Carole Paul, ed., The First Modern Museums of Art: The Birth of an Institution in 18th- and Early-19th-Century Europe (Los Angeles: J. Paul Getty Museum, 2012), 368 pages, ISBN 9781606061206, $50.

In the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, the first modern, public museums of art—civic, state, or national—appeared throughout Europe, setting a standard for the nature of such institutions that has made its influence felt to the present day. Although the emergence of these museums was an international development, their shared history has not been systematically explored until now. Taking up that project, this volume includes chapters on fifteen of the earliest and still major examples, from the Capitoline Museum in Rome, opened in 1734, to the Alte Pinakothek in Munich, opened in 1836. These essays consider a number of issues, such as the nature, display, and growth of the museums’ collections and the role of the institutions in educating the public.

The introductory chapters by art historian Carole Paul, the volume’s editor, lay out the relationship among the various museums and discuss their evolution from private noble and royal collections to public institutions. In concert, the accounts of the individual museums give a comprehensive overview, providing a basis for understanding how the collective emergence of public art museums is indicative of the cultural, social, and political shifts that mark the transformation from the early-modern to the modern world. The fourteen distinguished contributors to the book include Robert G. W. Anderson, Adrian von Buttlar, Jeffrey Collins, Paula Findlen, Thomas W. Gaehtgens, Andrew McClellan, Magnus Olausson, Bénédicte Savoy, Andrew Schulz, Solfrid Söderlind, Brandon Taylor, Tristan Weddigen, and Michael Yonan.

Carole Paul is a scholar of seventeenth- and eighteenth-century art in Italy, whose recent work concerns the history of museums and collections in the early-modern period. Her publications include Making a Prince’s Museum: Drawings for the Late-Eighteenth-Century Redecoration of the Villa Borghese (Getty Publications, 2000).

Conference | Writing Materials: Women of Letters

Posted in conferences (to attend) by Editor on September 27, 2012

Writing Materials: Women of Letters from Enlightenment to Modernity
King’s College London and V&A, 29-30 November 2012

This interdisciplinary colloquium will explore the tools and environments of women’s writing in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.  It aims to create new connections between texts and material objects, linking intellectual history with its material medium–paper, quills, desks, letter-cases, ink and inkwells.

Speakers and participants:

Pamela Clemit (University of Durham)
Dena Goodman (University of Michigan)
Peter Stallybrass (University of Pennsylvania)
Karen Harvey (University of Sheffield)
Clare Brant (King’s College London)

To make sure of a place register now for this one and a half day conference. The first day at King’s College, London is free and open access to all. To register, please email: k.spiller@Swansea.ac.uk. The full day at the V&A is very reasonably priced at £25 or less so you are advised to book now to avoid disappointment.

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Note (added 30 October 2012) — The final programme is available as a PDF here»

Call for Papers | Alternative Enlightenments

Posted in Calls for Papers by Editor on September 26, 2012

From the conference website:

Alternative Enlightenments: An Interdisciplinary Conference in the Humanities
Bilkent University, Ankara, Turkey, 26-28 April 2013

Proposals due by 1 December 2012

Keynote Speakers

Wijnand Mijnhardt, Professor of History and Director of the Descartes Centre, University of Utrecht
Felicity Nussbaum, Professor of English, UCLA

From Kant’s seminal essay “What is Enlightenment?” through the manifold critical responses of the twentieth century, the ambiguity of a term designating both a paradigmatic approach to human intellect or autonomy, and a specific historical period, remains. How distinct is the concept of Enlightenment from the era of European history long taken to have discovered or invented it? This symposium proposes an examination of Enlightenments in the plural, welcoming both revisionary accounts of the Age of Enlightenment and explorations of Enlightenment in other times and places.

With an eye to translating the idea of Enlightenment, scholars have traced its many national and regional varieties. Discussions of an Ionian or an Athenian Enlightenment, of movements of Enlightenment in the medieval caliphate or the Ottoman Empire, share the contemporary intellectual landscape with debates on the continuing relevance of the eighteenth-century Enlightenment to the current global order. We are interested in the way the term has been borrowed and translated, creating a constellation of “Enlightenments” bound together by family resemblances. Is there still a singular project of Enlightenment (i.e. the critique of received ideas and inherited values, in particular religious ones; the promotion of rational or empirical methods; the creation of cosmopolitan and secular spaces), or has the term broken out of its historical mold to designate a more fluid set of cultural projects and practices?

Where do we stand today with regard to the Enlightenment? After all, the continuation of a politics and practice of Enlightenment may depend on the spatial and temporal translations we propose to explore. Such displacements give new life to the idea of Enlightenment, even as the term is contested, criticized and transformed.

Topics of interest include:

• Ionian / Athenian Enlightenment
• Secularism, materialism, the immanent frame
• Literatures of Worldliness in East and West: Renaissance, Tanzimat, Arab and Near Eastern Enlightenments
• Orientalism and Occidentalism
• Diplomacy, correspondence, the figure of the court philosopher
• What is Enlightenment: Kant, Foucault and beyond
• (The) Enlightenment in the Americas
• The public and the private: cross-cultural studies of an Enlightenment distinction
• Travel literature, satire, and utopian fiction
• Nineteenth century national Enlightenments, nationalism vs. internationalism
• Enlightenment and Empire
• The rhetoric of Enlightenment in geopolitics, the claims of the West
• Material culture, exchange, circulation, accumulation, dispersal
• Enlightenment and its others: mysticism, hermeticism and the arcane
• The metaphorics of Enlightenment: illumination, dawn, twilight and dusk
• Where do we stand today with regard to (the) Enlightenment? Critical theory / social and political practice

Please submit an abstract of no more than 300 words to wcoker@bilkent.edu.tr by 1 December 2012.

Jewish High Holidays

Posted in anniversaries, on site by Editor on September 25, 2012

On Site

With Yom Kippur (The Day of Atonement) beginning this evening at sundown, it seems like an appropriate time to note an exceptional piece of eighteenth-century English architecture: the Bevis Marks Synagogue in London, the oldest synagogue in Britain, with a history of continuous worship stretching back 311 years. I was one of 2000 fortunate people to visit the building on Sunday in conjunction with London’s annual Open House weekend.

Joseph Avis, The Bevis Marks Synagogue in London, 1701

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A short walk from the Aldgate Tube stop and historically just north of the actual gateway, the Bevis Marks Synagogue was completed in September 1701, the work of Joseph Avis, a Quaker carpenter who had previously worked with Christopher Wren on St Bride’s in Fleet Street. With a few exceptions, the interior and furnishings of this Grade I listed building are original. Some of the benches, in fact, date to the middle of the seventeenth century, when the community met in the upper floor of a house in nearby Creechurch Lane.

It was under Cromwell that these Spanish and Portuguese Jews–many of whom had strong ties to Amsterdam–were legally recognized and allowed to practice their faith openly (in addition to the right to a space for worship, they were granted permission to establish a cemetery). Services today are carried out almost entirely in Hebrew, though there are two exceptions: announcement are made in Portuguese, and prayers for the Queen are said in English.

Architecturally, the building relates to contemporary dissenting traditions and corresponds to the rebuilding of the fifty-one churches by Wren. One of the points I took away from the visit was simply how easy and useful it would be to include the Bevis Marks Synagogue when teaching Wren and the reconstruction of London following the Great Fire. It would provide a physically tangible way to engage the history of Jews in England, looking both backward and forward. One could, for instance, address the arrival of Jews with William the Conqueror, the expulsion under Edward I in 1290, and the migration of Jews from the Iberian Peninsula after 1492. Looking forward into the eighteenth century, I would like to know more about The Board of Deputies of British Jews, which was formally established on the accession of George III to the throne in 1760. With the synagogue, the character and limits of religious tolerance in the period are nicely introduced.  As I’m really just thinking aloud here, I’m sure many of you who teach have already been doing
this and doing it well in your classes–so by all means feel free to chime in
with suggestions.

To all those keeping the fast, G’mar Tov.

-CH

Call for Papers | Temporary Conditions in Architecture

Posted in Calls for Papers by Editor on September 24, 2012

From the Society of Architectural Historians of Great Britain:

Transitory, Transportable, and Transformable: Temporary Conditions in Architecture
London, 18 May 2013

Proposals due by 15 October 2012

Proposals are invited for papers addressing the theme of Temporary Conditions in Architecture to be presented at the 2013 Annual Symposium of the Society of Architectural Historians of Great Britain, to be held at Alan Baxter Associates, 75 Cowcross Street, London  EC1M 6EL, on Saturday 18 May 2013.

Architecture is generally regarded as being, for the most part, permanent, static and immutable. However some significant buildings are intended to be temporary, whereas others are designed to be moved from one location to another or even to be flexible enough to alter their form and appearance as the result of changing requirements. This symposium intends to explore the temporary condition in architecture and to question whether architecture needs to be either permanent, static or immutable.

Transitory: Many buildings are short-lived, but few of them are regarded as serious architecture. In 1661, triumphal arches were erected for Charles II’s coronation procession from the City of London to Westminster. Constructed largely of timber, plaster and canvas, they were architecturally elaborate yet intentionally impermanent, only to be soon swept away. Political expediency, no doubt, necessitated their quick erection, otherwise they might have been built in stone and, like Temple Bar (1670-72), still stand today, albeit not in its original location. Modern materials allow for the quick and permanent erection of buildings such as Team 4’s prize-winning Reliance Controls Electronics Factory at Swindon (1967). Yet despite the longevity of its materials, this building was intentionally short-lived and, having served its purpose, was demolished in 1991. Only the ‘thirty-year rule’ saved it from being listed, as it might well have been. Papers could consider whether the lack of permanence in architecture diminishes its value or, on the other hand, whether the permanence which listing building legislation imposes and implies, ultimately benefits it.

Transportable: The Crystal Palace (1851) was first erected, in Hyde Park, as a temporary building but was soon transported to Sydenham where it was re-erected. This was made possible by its pre-fabricated, component-based assembly process. This thinking allowed pre-fabricated buildings to be sent out across the world by the European colonial powers in both the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Whether these be William Slater’s cast-iron church for the Ecclesiologists (1853-56) or Jean Prouvé’s steel barracks for the French army (1939), the use of transportable architecture to establish and promote religious or military, and therefore political control, was the same. Conversely, the practice of retrieving and displaying spolia as a demonstration of political control, such as Napoleon’s relocation to the Arc de Triomphe, in 1797, of the quadriga from St Mark’s Basilica, Venice, shows that architecture can be as easily brought home as it can be sent out. Papers, therefore, might like to investigate the use of transportable architecture as both a vehicle and an affirmation of colonisation and the influence which these buildings had on the national architecture, culture and society of the colony and the coloniser alike.

Transformable: If the Pyramids are regarded as the ultimate expression of permanence in architecture, then the Pompidou Centre, as originally conceived in 1971, might be the antithesis. For here the floors could move, the envelope could be reassembled, and the exposed services regularly modified. Although the floors, in the end, remained static, the building has been noticeably transformed over the years. Today, ‘Legacy’ is one of the key-words for the London 2012 Olympics. Yet few of the buildings destined to remain will be left in their original condition; many will be transformed. The side wings will be loped off Zaha Hadid’s swimming pool and the upper stage will be removed from Populous’s stadium. In considering legacy, papers might ask whether there is a real architectural legacy in such a situation and whether those few buildings which will emerge unscathed, such as, hopefully, Hopkins Architects’ velodrome, will provide the only true reminder of the Olympics.

Abstracts of not more than 250 words should be sent to Professor Neil Jackson at the School of Architecture, University of Liverpool, Abercromby Square, Liverpool L69 7ZN or e-mailed to neil.jackson@liverpool.ac.uk no later than 15 October 2012. Authors will be advised by 3 December 2012 whether or not their paper has been selected.

New Novel | The Potter’s Hand

Posted in books, reviews by Editor on September 23, 2012

Just out in the UK from Atlantic Books:

A. N. Wilson, The Potter’s Hand (London: Atlantic, 2012), 512 pages, ISBN: 9781848879515, £18.

In 1774, Josiah Wedgwood, master craftsman possessed with a burning scientific vision, embarks upon the thousand piece Frog Service for Catherine the Great. Josiah’s nephew Tom journeys to America to buy clay from the Cherokee for this exquisite china. Tom is caught up in the American rebellion, and falls for a Cherokee woman who will come to play a crucial role in Josiah’s late, great creation: the Portland Vase. As the family fortune is made, and Josiah’s entrepreneurial brilliance creates an empire that will endure for generations, it is his daughter Sukey, future mother of Charles Darwin, who bears clear-eyed witness.

A novel of epic scope, rich in warmth, intellect and humanity, The Potter’s Hand explores the lives and loves of one of Britain’s greatest families, whose travails are both ordinary — births, deaths, marriages, opium addiction, depression — and utterly extraordinary.

A. N. Wilson grew up in Staffordshire, where his father was Managing Director of Josiah Wedgwood and Sons. He was educated at Rugby and New College, Oxford. A Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature, he holds a prominent position in the world of literature and journalism. He is a prolific and award-winning biographer and celebrated novelist. His most recent novel, Winnie and Wolf, was longlisted for the 2007 Man Booker Prize. He lives in North London.

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From Country Life:

Reviewed by Giles Waterfield; posted 10 September 2012.

Historian, biographer, commentator and novelist A. N. Wilson is full of variety. Having recently written about St Paul and Adolf Hitler, he turns his attention in this long and richly flavoured novel to Josiah Wedgwood, probably the most famous of all British ceramicists, at least until the 20th century. Wedgwood excelled as craftsman, designer and businessman, building up the ceramics industry in Staffordshire. . .

This boldly panoramic novel mixes history and invention, swooping from the narrator’s viewpoint to the personal feelings of the very large cast of characters. Highly experienced narrator that he is, Mr Wilson skilfully interweaves his various plots, yet keeps Wedgwood, his wife and his daughter Sukie at the centre of the book. This is the historical novel at its most ambitious.

The full review is available here»

Exhibition | The Last Days of Pompeii

Posted in books, catalogues, exhibitions by Editor on September 22, 2012

While the exhibition showcases the nineteenth-century response to the eruption, there are still plenty of eighteenth-century offerings. The exhibition checklist is available here (as a PDF file). The following comes from the description of the accompanying publication.

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The Last Days of Pompeii: Decadence, Apocalypse, Resurrection
Getty Villa, Los Angeles, 12 September 2012 — 7 January 2013
Cleveland Museum of Art, 24 February — 19 May 2013
Musée national des beaux-arts du Québec, 13 June — 8 November 2013

Destroyed yet paradoxically preserved by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in A.D. 79, Pompeii and other nearby sites are usually considered places where we can most directly experience the daily lives of ancient Romans. Rather than present these sites as windows to the past, however, the authors of The Last Days of Pompeii: Decadence, Apocalypse, Resurrection explore Pompeii as a modern obsession, in which the Vesuvian sites function as mirrors of the present. Through cultural appropriation and projection, outstanding visual and literary artists of the last three centuries have made the ancient catastrophe their own, expressing contemporary concerns in diverse media—from paintings, prints, and sculpture, to theatrical performances, photography, and film. This lavishly illustrated volume—featuring the works of artists such as Piranesi, Fragonard, Kaufmann, Ingres, Chassériau, and Alma-Tadema, as well as Duchamp, Dalí, Rothko, Rauschenberg, and Warhol—surveys the legacy of Pompeii in the modern imagination under the three overarching rubrics of decadence, apocalypse, and resurrection.

Decadence investigates the perception of Pompeii as a site of impending and well-deserved doom due to the excesses of the ancient Romans, such as paganism, licentiousness, greed, gluttony, and violence. The catastrophic demise of the Vesuvian sites has become inexorably linked with the understanding of antiquity, turning Pompeii into a fundamental allegory for Apocalypse, to which all subsequent disasters (natural or man-made) are related, from the San Francisco earthquake of 1906 to Hiroshima, Nagasaki, 9/11, and Hurricane Katrina. Resurrection examines how Pompeii and the Vesuvian cities have been reincarnated in modern guise through both scientific archaeology and fantasy, as each successive cultural reality superimposed its values and ideas on the distant past.

Victoria C. Gardner Coates, Kenneth Lapatin, and Jon L. Seydl, The Last Days of Pompeii: Decadence, Apocalypse, Resurrection (Los Angeles: J. Paul Getty Museum, 2012), 256 pages, ISBN: 9781606061152, $40.

June 2012 Issue of ‘The Court Historian’

Posted in books, conferences (summary), journal articles, reviews by Editor on September 21, 2012

Eighteenth-century topics in the current issue of The Court Historian 17 (June 2012) . . .

Articles

• Clarissa Campbell Orr, “Popular History, Court Studies, and Courtier Diaries,” pp. 1-15.

• Robin Thomas, “Building the Monarchy: The Teatro di San Carlo in Naples, 1737,” pp. 35-60

• Neil Jeffares, “Between France and Bavaria: Louis-Joseph d’Albert de Luynes, Prince de Grimberghen,” pp. 61-85.

Reviews

• Clare Hornsby, Review of David Marshall, Susan Russell, and Karin Wolfe, eds., Roma Britannica: Art Patronage and Cultural Exchange in Eighteenth-Century Rome (London: British School at Rome, 2011), pp. 91-93.

• Wolf Burchard, Review of Christina Strunck and Elisabeth Kieven, eds., Europäische Galeriebauten: Galleries in a Comparative European Perspective (1400-1800), Römische Studien der Bibliotheca Hertziana 29 (Munich: Hirmer Verlag, 2010); and Mathieu da Vinha and Claire Constans, eds., Les grandes galeries européennes XVIIe-XIXe siècles (Paris: Éditions de la Maison des sciences de l’homme, 2010), pp. 95-104.

Conference Reports

• Antonio Ernesto Denunzio, “Aristocratic Residences in Naples: The Palazzo Zevallos Stigliano and Arts Patronage by the Nobility from the 16th to the 20th Centuries” (Naples, October 2011), pp. 113-14.

• Charles C. Noel, “The Court in Europe: Politics and Religion, 1500-1800,” (Madrid, December 2010), pp. 117-20.