Exhibition | Neapolitan Drawings

Posted in catalogues, exhibitions by Editor on March 28, 2014

As noted at ArtDaily (25 March 2014) . . .

Dessins Napolitain / Neapolitan Drawings
Marty de Cambiaire, Paris, 25 March — 10 April 2014


Filippo Falciatore (actif à Naples 1718–1768),
Térée pourchassant Procné et Philomèle

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Marty de Cambiaire’s seventh show takes place in their offices, located on 16 place Vendôme, from 25 March to 4 April 2014. It focuses on a group of forty Neapolitan and Sicilian drawings dating from the 16th to the 18th century. A bilingual exhibition catalogue has been published, similar to their previous catalogues (which can be downloaded from their website). Given the scarcity of the literature on the subject, this publication provides fresh scholarship on a field still relatively unknown to the public as well as connoisseurs. There are very few Neapolitan drawings in public collections. They are equally rare far on the market. Therefore several years were required to build up a coherent group intended to illustrate 350 years of graphic production in Naples and Sicily. The ultimate goal of this venture, quite unprecedented in the old master drawing market, is to make a significant scientific contribution to the field.

Neapolitan drawing has long been a neglected research area. A few sporadic shows—some of which quite recent—have confirmed art historians’ strong interest in an area which remains largely unexplored. There is thus ample room for fascinating discoveries. The Neapolitan school (which includes the Sicilian school) is largely underrepresented in museums. Nor is it clearly identified as a distinct school, especially in comparison with other Italian schools such as the Florentine, Bolognese, Roman or Venetian ones. The Neapolitan school gives us the opportunity to examine draughtsmanship in its various aspects as an active practice, apprehended as a working method and not just as an intellectual concept destined to confer a social status to artists. Consequently their intention is to showcase the specificities of the Neapolitan school, through a group of 40 drawings dating between 1550 and 1800.

The prime concern in gathering them has been to focus on quality, condition and scholarly interest. It turned out to be a challenging venture given the traditional scarcity of Neapolitan drawings on the market. The gallery has decided to bring together artists such as Giordano and Solimena, already well-researched and known from the public, with other artists whose names are not so familiar but who were essential in the genesis of this school. It seemed equally important to illustrate the diversity of: the techniques used; the subjects illustrated; and the purpose of these drawings, which could be preparatory studies either for religious altarpieces or for decorative compositions, for book frontispieces or decorative pieces, or even intended as works of art per se.

The show explores successive periods in the Neapolitan and Sicilian graphic production. The earliest sheet presented is by a rare and precious artist, Leonardo Castellano (circa 1544–1588). This is complemented by two other 16th-century drawings by Francesco Curia (1538–1610), while Belisario Corenzio (circa 1558–1646) takes us into the 17th century. There big names such as Luca Giordano, Matia Preti and Salvator Rosa feature, alongside with lesser-known artists who deserve a reappraisal, including Cesare and Francesco Fracanzano, Battistello Carraciolo. and Aniello Falcone. Francesco Solimena and his pupils, Francesco De Mura, Francesco Celebrano, Giacopo Cestaro, Lorenzo de Caro and Campora are represented with several sheets which demonstrate how profoundly the master renewed the field of decorative painting. Solimena also revived the creative process itself, passing down to his pupils a method on which they firmly grounded their approach and developed their own talent. The final drawing in the collection’s chronology is a large sheet by Giuseppe Camarrano, a neoclassical artist rarely seen on the market. It illustrates the evolution of Neapolitan art towards a more European neo-classical taste.

One of the key criteria in the selection process was the condition of each drawing. However it is important to bear in mind that Neapolitan artists viewed their drawings not only as a mental projection but also as a hands-on device: assembled and pasted together, some sheets were thus pricked for transfer, while others bear the marks of working life in the studio. This show presents a varied and representative overview of the Neapolitan school. New attributions will be put forward, which will shed new light on certain artists. The gallery is thus hoping to provide a panorama of a rich, distinct graphic field.

Symposium | In Circulation: John Singleton Copley and Benjamin West

Posted in conferences (to attend) by Editor on March 27, 2014

Reminder that this webinar event starts tomorrow (Friday) at 11:15am (Eastern Daylight Time) . . .

In Circulation: John Singleton Copley and Benjamin West in England, France, and America
The Paul Mellon Centre, London, 28 March 2014

This symposium and webinar explores aspects of the work and careers of the American-born artists Benjamin West and John Singleton Copley, focusing in particular on the ways in which they engaged with the exhibition and print cultures of their day, particularly in Britain, but also in France and America. The program relates to the international loan exhibition American Adversaries: West and Copley in a Transatlantic World, which was on display at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston (MFAH), from October 6, 2013 through January 20, 2014.

The Yale Center for British Art is live streaming this daylong conference, which is also available for free on the MFAH website, shortly before the program begins. Join the conversation on Twitter using the handle @PaulMellonCentr. Hosted in London by the Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art, the symposium is made possible through support from the Terra Foundation for American Art.

More information, including the schedule (according to GMT), is available here»

Call for Papers | The Long Eighteenth Century (Down Under)

Posted in Calls for Papers by Editor on March 26, 2014

From the Sydney Intellectual History Network:

‘Ideas and Enlightenment’, The Long Eighteenth Century (Down Under)
David Nichol Smith Seminar in Eighteenth-Century Studies XV
The University of Sydney, 10–13 December 2014

Proposals due by 15 June 2014

The Sydney Intellectual History Network and ‘Putting Periodisation to Use’ Research Group at the University of Sydney invite you to the Fifteenth David Nichol Smith Seminar (DNS), with the theme ‘Ideas and Enlightenment’. Inaugurated and supported by the National Library of Australia, the DNS conference is the leading forum for eighteenth-century studies in Australasia. It brings together scholars from across the region and internationally who work on the long eighteenth century (1688–1815) in a range of disciplines, including history, literature, art and architectural history, philosophy, the history of science, musicology, anthropology, archaeology and studies of material culture. We welcome proposals for papers or panels on the following topics, as well as proposals for subjects that fall outside of these broad themes:

François Boucher, The Fountain of Love, 1748, 116 x 133 inches (Los Angeles: Getty Museum, 71.PA.37)

François Boucher, The Fountain of Love, 1748, 116 x 133 inches
(Los Angeles: Getty Museum, 71.PA.37)

• Making Ideas Visible
• Biography and the History of Individual Life
• Economic Ideas in Social and Political Contexts
• Global Sensibilities
• National Identity and Cosmopolitanism
• Antiquaries and Alternative Versions of the Classical Tradition
• Periodisation and the Question of Period Styles
• ‘Enlightenment’ and the Pacific
• Spectacle, Sociability and Pleasure
• Genres of Enlightenment
• Science, Technology and Medicine
• Borders and Empire
• Historiography of the Enlightenment
• Post-Enlightenment Trajectories in Literature and Art

We welcome proposals for 20-minute papers. Proposals consist of a 250-word abstract and 2-page cv, sent via email as a pdf attachment to sihn.dns@sydney.edu.au. Further details are available at the Sydney Intellectual History Network website, where accommodation and keynotes will be posted soon. If you have questions about the conference, please contact the organizing committee at sihn.dns@sydney.edu.au. Deadline for submissions: 15 June 2014.

DNS XV Organizing Committee: Dr Jennifer Ferng, Prof Mark Ledbury, Prof Jennifer Milam and Dr Nicola Parsons

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Added 4 April 2014:

Post Graduate Travel Grants

The 15th David Nichol Smith Seminar organizing committee is pleased to announce that they will be able to offer a limited number of travel grants to expand postgraduate participation in the 2014 ‘Ideas and Enlightenment’ conference. These are provided through generous funding contributions from the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, the Putting Periodisation to Use Group, and the Sydney Intellectual History Network at the University of Sydney. These scholarships are part of an extended postgraduate program at DNS XV, which will be supported by the newly formed DNS Graduate Caucus. We anticipate that the program will include paired mentoring between junior and senior colleagues at the conference and a professional development workshop. Those awarded scholarships travel grants would be expected to be actively involved in this program.

Travel grants (up to a maximum amount of $2000) will be awarded as reimbursement of travel expenses. Funds may be used for transportation to and from the conference and accommodation only, not for meals). Partial grants may be offered. Recipients must attend the full conference and present a paper at the David Nichol Smith Seminar XV at the University of Sydney. Costs incurred, up to the amount granted, will be reimbursed upon presentation of receipts. In certain cases, fares or other expenses may be paid directly by the DNS XV organizing committee through the office of the Sydney Intellectual History Network. Applications from international and Australian postgraduate students are invited.

The recipient must be actively engaged in full- or part-time doctoral study in eighteenth-century studies, in any field, at a recognised university.

Applications should include
• A completed application form
• A copy of their DNS proposal for a 20 minute paper (250-word paper proposal and 2-page CV)
These materials must be sent as a single pdf document and attached to an email sent to the attention of the organising committee at: sihn.dns@sydney.edu.au. Inquiries about the scholarships should also be directed to members of the committee through this email. Application forms are available to download from the on the conference webpages. Closing date: 15 June 2014

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Please note the confirmation of these keynote speakers (added 16 May 2014). . .

Keynote Speakers
John Dixon Hunt (University of Pennsylvania)
Sophia Rosenfeld (University of Virginia)
Michael McKeon (Rutgers University)
Erika Naginski (Harvard University)

New Book | Transporting Visions

Posted in books by Editor on March 25, 2014

From the University of California Press:

Jennifer L. Roberts, Transporting Visions: The Movement of Images in Early America (Los Angeles: University of California Press, 2014), 240 pages, ISBN: 978-0520251847, $60 / £42.

Transporting Visions follows pictures as they traveled through and over the swamps, forests, towns, oceans, and rivers of British America and the United States between 1760 and 1860. Taking seriously the complications involved in moving pictures through the physical world—the sheer bulk and weight of canvases, the delays inherent in long-distance reception, the perpetual threat to the stability and mnemonic capacity of images, the uneasy mingling of artworks with other kinds of things in transit–Jennifer L. Roberts forges a model for a material history of visual communication in early America. Focusing on paintings and prints by John Singleton Copley, John James Audubon, and Asher B. Durand—which were designed with mobility in mind—Roberts shows how an analysis of such imagery opens new perspectives on the most fundamental problems of early American commodity circulation, geographic expansion, and social cohesion.

Jennifer L. Roberts is Elizabeth Cary Agassiz Professor of the Humanities at Harvard University. She teaches American art from the colonial period to the present, with particular focus on issues of landscape, expedition, material culture theory, and the history of science. Her book Mirror-Travels: Robert Smithson and History was published in 2004 by Yale University Press.


Introduction: Long-Distance Pictures
1. Dilemmas of Delivery in Copley’s Atlantic
2. Audubon’s Burden: Materiality and Transmission in The Birds of America
3. Gathering Moss: Asher B. Durand and the Deceleration of Landscape
Epilogue: Material Visual Culture
Selected Bibliography
List of Illustrations


Conference | Objects, Families, Homes: British Material Cultures

Posted in conferences (to attend) by Editor on March 24, 2014

From The East India Company at Home project:

Objects, Families, Homes: British Material Cultures in Global Contexts
University College London, 11–12 July 2014

Since 2011, The East India Company at Home project has focused on country houses—and the families and objects that inhabited them—to explore how British material culture developed in a global context during the eighteenth and nineteenth century. The project’s goals have been twofold. First, we have sought to illuminate the broad-ranging ways in which the activities of the English East India Company shaped elite material cultures in Britain—and by doing so, shaped British identities in the Georgian and Victorian periods, and beyond. Second, we have sought to develop new ways of connecting diverse communities of historical researchers (archivists, curators, family historians, freelance historians, local historians, stately home volunteers and university-based historians) and in so doing to weave otherwise dispersed studies into a transnational material narrative. At the same time, by disseminating research findings through our website we have made them available on an open-access basis. The conference plans to encourage a range of speakers to present on these themes and discuss their wider significance.

Confirmed keynote speakers include Deborah Cohen, Professor of Modern British and European History at Northwestern University and author of Household Gods: The British and their Possessions (2006) and Family Secrets (2013), in dialogue with Marietta Crichton-Stuart, a descendant of the Marquess of Bute, who has researched how Margaret Bruce designed and furnished Falkland House in Fife in the 1830s and 1840s.

Members of the public are warmly welcomed to attend this event. Registration is accessible (until 30 June 2014) via the UCL online store.

The conference will take place in the Roberts Building on the Bloomsbury Campus of  University College London. A map giving directions to the Roberts Building can be found here. The building stands opposite Waterstones, Gower Street. The Roberts Building is a 5- to 10-minute walk from various underground stations including, Goodge Street, Euston, Euston Square, Russell Square and Tottenham Court Road.

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From the conference programme:

F R I D A Y ,  1 1  J U L Y  2 0 1 4

9.30  Registration

10.00  Welcome Remarks from Margot Finn, Principal Investigator, The East India Company at Home, 1757–1857

10.30  Session 1

Strand A: China and the ‘Chinese’ Style in British Houses
• Alexandra Loske (University of Sussex), ‘Chinese Landscapes in yellow etched in gold and highly varnished’: The influence of exportware and print culture on colour and ornament in the Royal Pavilion, Brighton
• Emile de Bruijn (National Trust) and Helen Clifford (UCL/University of Warwick), Past, Present and Future: The Chinese Wallpaper Project
• Clare Taylor (The Open University), Trading wallpaper: India paper and prints in the eighteenth-century home

Strand B: Buildings and Networks, Chair: Ellen Filor (UCL)
• Joanna Frew (University of Essex), ‘Inform me how I may become a useful member of the community at large’: Looking beyond the family
• Rosie Dias (University of Warwick), The British Country House in Colonial India
• Sylvia Shorto (American University, Beirut), Robert Smith’s ‘Truly Fair Palaces’ in India and in Europe

12.00  Lunch

13.00 Session 2

Strand A: Wales, Chair: Kate Smith (UCL)
• Diane James (University of Warwick), Welsh gardens
• Lowri Ann Rees (Bangor University), The nabob returned: the infiltration of East India Company men into Welsh landed society, c.1760–1840
• Joanna de Groot (University of York), Movement and materiality: traces of the transnational career of Harford Jones Brydges (1764–1847)

Strand B: Gender and Collecting, Chair: Kate Hill (University of Lincoln)
• Holly Shaffer (Yale), Publishing Indian Art between Suffolk and the Deccan
• Rosemary Raza (Independent scholar), Bringing India home: Early nineteenth-century British women and the understanding of India
• Catherine Eagleton (British Library), Collecting Asia at 32 Soho Square: Sarah Sophia Banks and her coins, tokens and medals

14.30  Coffee and tea

15.00  Session 3

Strand A: London Houses, Chair: Spike Sweeting (University of Warwick)
• David Veevers (University of Kent), The matriarchy of 45 Berkeley Square: gender, identity and imperial expansion in the late eighteenth century
• Harriet Richardson and Peter Guillery (Survey of London, UCL), At home in Cavendish Square and Harley Street: East India Company impact on eighteenth-century Marylebone
• George McGilvary ( Independent scholar), The Sulivans of India House

Strand B: Portraying India, Chair: Natasha Eaton (UCL)
• Viccy Coltman (University of Edinburgh), Portraiture and Empire: George Chinnery’s Gilbert Elliot, 1st Earl of Minto, 1812–13
• Jennifer van Schoor (Birkbeck), The Indian folds at Harewood House
• Bharti Parmar (Independent scholar and artist), Widow’s Weeds: Reflections on Black

16.30  Coffee and tea

17.00  Keynote Lecture
Deborah Cohen, Professor of Modern British and European History at Northwestern University and author of
Household Gods: The British and their Possessions (2006) and Family Secrets (2013) will be speaking in dialogue with Marietta Crichton-Stuart, a descendant of the Marquess of Bute, who has researched how Margaret Bruce designed and furnished Falkland House in Fife in the 1830s and 1840s.

18.30  Drinks reception

S A T U R D A Y ,  1 2  J U L Y  2 0 1 4

9.30  Session 1

Strand A: Loss and Looting, Chair: Meike Fellinger (University of Warwick)
• Lindsay Allen (KCL), Curious gifts of ancient substance
• Nigel Erskine (Australian National Maritime Museum), Passages to India: exploring Pacific pathways to Asia during Australia’s colonial period
• Rosie Llewellyn Jones (BACSA), Lost, stolen or strayed?: India artefacts in Britain
• Shaleen Wadhwana (India Photo Archive Foundation), Of Awadh, Oudh and Lucknow

Strand B: And so we go to Daylesford, Chair: Kevin Rogers
• Zirwat Chowdhury (Reed College), ‘Meanwhile’ at Daylesford…
• Elizabeth Lenckos (University of Chicago Graham School), ‘The House is fitted up with a degree of Taste & Magnificence seldom to be met with’: Daylesford, and the ‘nabobina’ Hastings’ ivory furniture collection
• Gillian Forrester (Yale Center for British Art), ‘Such a proof of Love and Duty’: Warren Hastings and the memorialization of India at Daylesford

11.00  Coffee and tea

11.30 Session 2

Strand A: Displaying Identity, Chair: Jane Hamlett (Royal Holloway, University of London)
• Deborah Sugg Ryan (Falmouth University), The elephant on the mantelpiece: the interwar suburban home and the detritus of empire
•  Britta Schilling (University of Cambridge), Grand designs: British homes in East Africa, 1850–1960
• Sarah Longair (British Museum), ‘The scene was brilliant and striking’: display and imperial identity in early colonial Zanzibar

Strand B: Daily Lives and Longings, Chair: Lucy Dow (UCL)
• Jean Sutton (Independent scholar), Distance, longing and return in the imperial family
•  Laura Humphreys (Queen Mark, University of London), World service: the foreign dimensions of domestic service in late nineteenth-century and early twentieth-century London
• Kate Smith (UCL), Imperial families: Women writing home in Georgian Britain

13.00  Lunch

14.00  Is the East India Company at home?
Presentations from Margot Finn, Helen Clifford, Kate Smith and Ellen Filor; followed by general discussion with panel and audience

16.00  Conference ends

New Book | Androids in the Enlightenment

Posted in books by Editor on March 23, 2014

From The University of Chicago Press:

Adelheid Voskuhl, Androids in the Enlightenment: Mechanics, Artisans, and Cultures of the Self (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2013), 296 pages, ISBN: 978-0226034027, $45.

9780226034027The eighteenth century saw the creation of a number of remarkable mechanical androids: at least ten prominent automata were built between 1735 and 1810 by clockmakers, court mechanics, and other artisans from France, Switzerland, Austria, and the German lands. Designed to perform sophisticated activities such as writing, drawing, or music making, these ‘Enlightenment automata’ have attracted continuous critical attention from the time they were made to the present, often as harbingers of the modern industrial age, an era during which human bodies and souls supposedly became mechanized.

In Androids in the Enlightenment, Adelheid Voskuhl investigates two such automata—both depicting piano-playing women. These automata not only play music, but also move their heads, eyes, and torsos to mimic a sentimental body technique of the eighteenth century: musicians were expected to generate sentiments in themselves while playing, then communicate them to the audience through bodily motions. Voskuhl argues, contrary to much of the subsequent scholarly conversation, that these automata were unique masterpieces that illustrated the sentimental culture of a civil society rather than expressions of anxiety about the mechanization of humans by industrial technology. She demonstrates that only in a later age of industrial factory production did mechanical androids instill the fear that modern selves and societies had become indistinguishable from machines.

Adelheid Voskuhl is associate professor in the Department of the History of Science at Harvard University.


List of Illustrations
1 Introduction: Androids, Enlightenment, and the Human-Machine Boundary
2 The Harpsichord-Playing Android; or, Clock-Making in Switzerland
3 The Dulcimer-Playing Android; or, Furniture-Making in the Rhineland
4 The Design of the Mechanics; or, Sentiments Replicated in Clockwork
5 Poetic Engagement with Piano-Playing Women Automata
6 The ‘Enlightenment Automaton’ in the Modern Industrial Age

Symposium | From Poussin to Monet

Posted in conferences (to attend) by Editor on March 22, 2014

Von Poussin bis Monet. Die Farben Frankreichs
Bucerius Kunst Forum, Hamburg, 1 April 2014

Mit Dr. Susanne Blöcker, Remagen; Dr. Eva Hausdorf, Bremen; Prof. Dr. Christian Michel, Lausanne; Prof. Dr. Beate Söntgen, Lüneburg; Dr. Christoph Vogtherr, London; Prof. Dr. Michael F. Zimmermann, Eichstätt-Ingolstadt

Rund 200 Jahre liegen zwischen dem Werk von Poussin und Monet. In dieser Zeit befreite sich die französische Malerei radikal von künstlerischen Regeln und Traditionen. Die gesellschaftlichen Umbrüche des 18. Jahrhunderts leiteten die Moderne ein. Die Veränderungen der französischen Gesellschaft vor und nach dem Epochenjahr 1789 wurden auch zum Motor der Revolutionierung der künstlerischen Mittel. Die Ausstellung Von Poussin bis Monet. Die Farben Frankreichs widmet sich der künstlerischen Befreiung der französischen Malerei von den Vorgaben des Akademismus und der Entwicklung zur Freilichtmalerei des Impressionismus. Die Ausstellung zeigt Werke aus der Sammlung der National Gallery of Ireland in Dublin. Sie werden durch Gemälde aus der Sammlung Rau (UNICEF) in Remagen ergänzt. Tickets € 10,– (inkl. Kaffee und Empfang), ermäßigt für Bucerius Kunst Club Mitglieder € 8,– Freitickets für Studierende in begrenzter Anzahl (nur im Voraus an der Kasse im Bucerius Kunst Forum).


10.00  Begrüßung, Ortrud Westheider, Bucerius Kunst Forum

10.15  “The collection of French painting in the National Gallery of Ireland,” Adrian LeHarivel, National Gallery of Ireland

11.00  “Vom Gelehrten zum Genie. Das Bild des Malers von Poussin bis Monet,” Eva Hausdorf, Kunsthalle Bremen

11.45  “Les combats de l’Académie royale de Peinture et de Sculpture pour un retour à la nature / Der Kampf der Königlichen Akademie für ein retour à la nature,” Christian Michel, Université de Lausanne

12.30  Mittagspause

14.00  “Die Fête galante im 18. Jahrhundert. Ein Raum für Innovation außerhalb der akademischen Gattungsdefinitionen,” Christoph Vogtherr, The Wallace Collection, London

14.45  “Revolution der Gefühle. Bürgerliche Ideale der Aufklärungszeit,” Susanne Blöcker, Arp Museum Bahnhof Rolandseck, Remagen

15.30  Kaffeepause

16.00  “Übertragungen. Emotion und Kommunikation bei Jean Siméon Chardin,” Beate Söntgen, Leuphana Universität Lüneburg

16.45  “Winkel der Schöpfung. Naturalismus, Impressionismus und der intime Blicke in die Weite,” Michael F. Zimmermann, Katholische Universität Eichstätt-Ingolstadt

17.30  Empfang

Exhibition | From Poussin to Monet

Posted in exhibitions by Editor on March 22, 2014

This 2015 exhibition will showcase French paintings from the National Gallery of Ireland:

Von Poussin bis Monet. Die Farben Frankreichs
Bucerius Kunst Forum, Hamburg, 10 October 2015 — 17 January 2016

Die gesellschaftlichen und künstlerischen Umbrüche des 18. Jahrhunderts leiteten die Moderne ein. War Frankreichs Gesellschaft und Kunst im 17. Jahrhundert noch durch den königlichen Hof und die königliche Kunstakademie streng zentralistisch reglementiert, so gewann die bürgerliche Öffentlichkeit im Zeitalter der Aufklärung neue Bedeutung und Macht. Die Veränderungen der französischen Gesellschaft vor und nach der Revolution wurden auch zum Motor der Revolutionierung der künstlerischen Mittel. Die Ausstellung Von Poussin bis Monet. Die Farben Frankreichs widmet sich der künstlerischen Befreiung der französischen Malerei von den Zwängen und Regeln des Akademismus hin zur Freilichtmalerei des Impressionismus. Die Ausstellung präsentiert die Sammlung französischer Malerei der National Gallery of Ireland in Dublin. Sie wird durch eine Auswahl von Gemälden aus der Sammlung Rau (UNICEF) in Remagen ergänzt.

Die Ausstellung entsteht in Kooperation mit dem Arp Museum Bahnhof Rolandseck.

New Book | Credit, Fashion, Sex in Old Regime France

Posted in books by Editor on March 21, 2014

From Duke UP:

Clare Haru Crowston, Credit, Fashion, Sex: Economies of Regard in Old Regime France (Duke University Press, 2013), 448 pages, ISBN: 978-0822355137 (hardcover), $100 / ISBN: 978-0822355281 (paperback), $28.

978-0-8223-5528-1_prIn Old Regime France credit was both a central part of economic exchange and a crucial concept for explaining dynamics of influence and power in all spheres of life. Contemporaries used the term credit to describe reputation and the currency it provided in court politics, literary production, religion, and commerce. Moving beyond Pierre Bourdieu’s theorization of capital, this book establishes credit as a key matrix through which French men and women perceived their world. As Clare Haru Crowston demonstrates, credit unveils the personal character of market transactions, the unequal yet reciprocal ties binding society, and the hidden mechanisms of political power.

Credit economies constituted ‘economies of regard’ in which reputation depended on embodied performances of credibility. Crowston explores the role of fashionable appearances and sexual desire in leveraging credit and reconstructs women’s vigorous participation in its gray markets. The scandalous relationship between Queen Marie Antoinette and fashion merchant Rose Bertin epitomizes the vertical loyalties and deep social divides of the credit regime and its increasingly urgent political stakes.

Clare Haru Crowston is Associate Professor of History at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. She is the author of Fabricating Women: The Seamstresses of Old Regime France, 1675–1791, also published by Duke University Press.


Illustrations and Tables  ix
Money and Measurements  xi
Acknowledgments  xiii
Introduction  1
1. Credit and Old Regime Economies of Regard  21
2. Critiques and Crises of the Credit System  56
3. Incredible Style: Intertwined Circuits of Credit, Fashion, and Sex  96
4. Credit in the Fashion Trades of Eighteenth-Century Paris  139
5. Fashion Merchants: Managing Credit, Narrating Collapse  195
6. Madame Déficit and Her Minister of Fashion: Self-Fashioning and the Politics of Credit  246
7. Family Affairs: Consumption, Credit, and the Marriage Bond  283
Conclusion. Credit is Dead. Long Live Credit!  316
Notes  329
Bibliography  383
Index  407

Exhibition | Hogarth, Reynolds, Turner: The Dawn of Modernity

Posted in exhibitions by Editor on March 20, 2014

From the museum:

Hogarth, Reynolds, Turner: Pittura inglese verso la modernità
The Dawn of Modernity: Painting in Britain in the 18th Century
Fondazione Roma Museo, Palazzo Sciarra, Rome, 15 April — 20 June 2014

Curated by Carolina Brook and Valter Curzi

pittura-inglese-romaThe exhibition offers the public a comprehensive overview of the social and artistic development that took place during the XVIII century in step with the hegemony gained by Great Britain at the historical, political, and economic level. For this purpose a corpus of over one hundred works belonging to prestigious institutions such as the British Museum, the Tate Gallery, the Victoria & Albert Museum, the Royal Academy, the National Portrait Gallery, the Museum of London, and the Uffizi Gallery has been formed and is accompanied by a nucleus of works from the important American collection belonging to the Yale Center for British Art.

During the eighteenth century England became an authentic international power, leader of the Industrial Revolution and of the domination of the sea routes, and thus raised the issue of establishing its own artistic school for the first time. The economic development lead by Great Britain created a new middle-class which included professionals, industrialists, merchants, scientists and philosophers who, having found that visible arts considerably affirmed their new social status, became patrons of those masters who over the century contributed to the definition of a domestic school.

The exhibition is divided into seven sections featuring a selection of works by the most significant English painters, for the purpose of documenting the portrait and landscape genres that found more fortune during this century, creating a figurative language capable of interpreting modernity which, in the nineteenth century, became a reference throughout Europe. Visitors may admire artists such as Hogarth, Reynolds, Gainsborough, Wright of Derby, Stubbs, Füssli, Constable, and Turner. Their works offer a significant cross-section of the peculiarity and originality of English art, an exhibition of which has not been held in Rome since 1966.

Update (added 19 April 2014) The exhibition press release, which details the seven sections, is available as a PDF file here».

The catalogue is available from Skira:

Carolina Brook and Valter Curzi, Hogarth, Reynolds, Turner: Pittura inglese verso la modernità (Rome: Skira, 2014), 304 pages, ISBN: 8857222707, €40.

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