Exhibition | We are One: Mapping America’s Road

Posted in exhibitions by Caitlin Smits on March 20, 2016

From The Boston Public Library:

We are One: Mapping America’s Road from Revolution to Independence
Boston Public Library, 2 May — 29 November 2015
DeWitt Wallace Decorative Arts Museum, Colonial Williamsburg, 5 March 2016 — 29 January 2017
New-York Historical Society, 2017

We-Are-One-BPLWe Are One maps the American road to independence. It explores the tumultuous events that led thirteen colonies to join to forge a new nation. The exhibition takes its title from Benjamin Franklin’s early design for a note of American currency containing the phrase “We Are One.” This presaged the ‘E Pluribus Unum‘ found on the seal of the United States, adopted in 1782, and on all U.S. coins.

Using geographic and cartographic perspectives, the exhibition traces the American story from the strife of the French and Indian War to the creation of a new national government and the founding of Washington, D.C. as its home. Exhibited maps and graphics show America’s early status as a British possession: thirteen colonies in a larger trans-Atlantic empire. During and after the French and Indian War, protection of those thirteen colonies exhausted Britain economically and politically, and led Parliament to pass unpopular taxes and restrictions on her American colonial subjects. The Stamp Act, the Tea Act, and limits on colonial trade and industry incited protests and riots in Boston, as contemporaneous portrayals in the exhibition show.

When tensions between Britain and her American colonies erupted into war, British cartographers and other witnesses depicted military campaigns, battles, and their settings. These maps, drawings, and military artifacts now bring the long, bloody struggle for independence to life.

Finally, We Are One shows how, in the aftermath of the Revolution, America took stock of her new geography with surveys and maps. During this period, the Founders struggled to craft a new national government that would confederate thirteen colonies with different economic interests and cultures. European maps reflect their success by recognizing America’s triumphant new status of nationhood and her expanding territory.

More information is available here»

New Book | The Philadelphia Country House

Posted in books by Editor on March 20, 2016

From Johns Hopkins UP:

Mark Reinberger and Elizabeth McLean, The Philadelphia Country House: Architecture and Landscape in Colonial America (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2015), 464 pages, ISBN: 9781421411637, $70.

51w7WcUSrfL._SX381_BO1,204,203,200_Colonial Americans, if they could afford it, liked to emulate the fashions of London and the style and manners of English country society while at the same time thinking of themselves as distinctly American. The houses they built reflected this ongoing cultural tension. By the mid-eighteenth century, Americans had developed their own version of the bourgeois English countryseat, a class of estate equally distinct in social function and form from townhouses, rural plantations, and farms. The metropolis of Philadelphia was surrounded by a particularly extraordinary collection of country houses and landscapes. Taken together, these estates make up one of the most significant groups of homes in colonial America.

In this masterly volume, Mark Reinberger, a senior architectural historian, and Elizabeth McLean, an accomplished scholar of landscape history, examine the country houses that the urban gentry built on the outskirts of Philadelphia in response to both local and international economic forces, social imperatives, and fashion. What do these structures and their gardens say about the taste of the people who conceived and executed them? How did their evolving forms demonstrate the persistence of European templates while embodying the spirit of American adaptation?

The Philadelphia Country House explores the myriad ways in which these estates—which were located in the country but responded to the ideas and manners of the city—straddled the cultural divide between urban and rural. Moving from general trends and building principles to architectural interiors and landscape design, Reinberger and McLean take readers on an intimate tour of the fine, fashionable elements found in upstairs parlors and formal gardens. They also reveal the intricate working world of servants, cellars, and kitchen gardens. Highlighting an important aspect of American historic architecture, this handsome volume is illustrated with nearly 150 photographs, more than 60 line drawings, and two color galleries.

Mark Reinberger is a professor of architecture at the University of Georgia. He is the author of Utility and Beauty: Robert Wellford and Composition Ornament in America. Elizabeth McLean is a research associate in botany at the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University. She is the coauthor of Peter Collinson and the Eighteenth-Century Natural History Exchange.

Call for Papers | NEASECS 2016, UMass Amherst

Posted in Calls for Papers by Editor on March 20, 2016


NEASECS Annual Conference
Translation, Transmission, Transgression in the Global Eighteenth Century
University of Massachusetts Amherst, 20–22 October 2016

Proposals due by 1 April 2016 / 15 May 2016

The annual meeting of NEASECS will be held at the UMass Amherst Campus Center. The theme is Translation, Transmission, Transgression in the Global Eighteenth Century. The conference will include a plenary address by Suvir Kaul from the University of Pennsylvania and a performance of Molière’s The Misanthrope; the registration fee will include two cocktail receptions, a banquet dinner on Friday night, and continental breakfasts.

Possible topics include translations, transmissions, and transgressions across cultures, languages, and literatures; across local and national borders; and across gender identities, racial identities, and class identities in the global eighteenth century. How do texts and ideas travel? Who and what determines when a translation or transmission crosses over into a transgression? Papers could address empire and colonialism, war, the slave trade, the book trade, Orientalism, and constructions of nation, nationality, and race. In keeping with NEASECS tradition, panels and papers devoted to elements of the long eighteenth century not directly related to the conference theme are also welcome.

Proposals for panels or roundtables should be uploaded to the online submission page by April 1. Organizers should submit a CV and a 100–200 word summary of the topic. Once a session has been approved, it will be posted to the conference website; individuals should submit abstracts and CVs directly to the organizer. Completed panels should be submitted to the organizing committee by May 15.

Individual paper proposals, including a CV and a 250-word abstract, should be uploaded to the online submission page by May 15. Individuals will be notified of the status of their proposals by June 15. Prior to submitting your individual proposal, please review the listing of approved panels on the ‘Approved Panels’ tab on the website. If you wish to join one of the approved panels, please email your paper proposal to the session chair directly before May 15.

◊  ◊  ◊  ◊  ◊

‘Approved panels’ include these, which may be of particular interest to art historians:

French Women Artists in England
Nadine Berenguier, University of New Hampshire (nsb@unh.edu)
Many French women artists left France and took up residence in England for extended periods of time during the long 18th century. Their reasons varied as much as their experiences abroad, but all were influenced by and influenced the culture in their new home. This panel will focus on women artists who became part of that migration, and how their British ‘séjour’ influenced them and their artistic endeavors and conversely what their impact was across the Channel.

Worldly Objects: Decorative Arts in the Long Eighteenth Century
Alden Cavanaugh, Indiana State University (alden.cavanaugh@indstate.edu)
This session welcomes papers that address the global decorative arts in the eighteenth century: that is, the intricate systems of transmission and translation that governed and created decorative objects, as well as the spaces in which those objects were displayed or used. Papers that use innovative or novel approaches in the interest of exploring decorative arts and/or interior design as manifestations of a transcontinental or global focus are particularly desirable. Potential topics could include, but are not limited to: Translations (or mistranslations) of styles, subject matter or narratives Trade, supply, or logistics Secondary markets Conceptions of Others (Chinoiserie, Turquerie, etc.) Fashions in decorative arts Marketing or production issues Economic realities related to decorative arts or interior decoration Lacquer, porcelain, glass, metalwork, jewelry, furniture, textiles or other material production Material exoticism Nationalistic impulses Objects of self-fashioning or personal maintenance Patterns of consumption.

Transpositions of Locke’s Essay in Eighteenth-Century France
Sarah Cohen, University at Albany, SUNY (scohen@albany.edu)
Even before it was first published in English in 1690, John Locke’s An Essay Concerning Human Understanding appeared in a nascent Epitome translated and published by Jean Le Clerc in his Bibliothèque universelle et historique of 1688. With the full work translated into French by Pierre Coste in 1700, Locke’s arguments for sensory based knowledge would steadily become a central theme both in the work of French philosophes such as Condillac and in transformations that took place in natural sciences and the arts. This session invites proposals for papers addressing any aspect of how Locke’s Essay was used, translated, or transformed by French intellectuals and artists in the long eighteenth century.


%d bloggers like this: