New Book | Idols and Museum Pieces: The Nature of Sculpture

Posted in books by Editor on July 11, 2017

Published by De Gruyter and available from ArtBooks.com:

Caroline van Eck, ed., Idols and Museum Pieces: The Nature of Sculpture, Its Historiography, and Exhibition History, 1640–1880 (Berlin: De Gruyter, 2017), ISBN: 978 31104 06917, 50€ / $58 / £41.

The publication of Winckelmann’s Geschichte der Kunst des Altertums in 1764 is considered as the defining moment in the genesis of the modern, scientific study of sculpture. It was a formalist and secular history, concentrating on the statue as a work of art, and studying sculpture in a museum setting, abstracting from its original religious, social or political functions. Other 17th- and 18th-century authors tried to understand those functions and why statues so often excited violent reactions ranging from adoration to abuse. The collection of essays aims to be a first investigation of the questions that arise out of an awareness that the origins of the Western historiography are much more complex than may appear from the perspective of Winckelmann’s vision of the Graeco-Roman tradition.


• Erin Downey, Sculptures in Print, The Galleria Giustiniana as Exemplar and Agent of Taste
• Frits Scholten, The Amsterdam Ivories of Francis van Bossuit: Reception and Transformation in the Eighteenth Century
• Anne Ritz-Guilbert, La sculpture comme source historique: Les dessins de la collection de François-Roger de Gaignières (1642–1715)
• Anna C. Knaap, Sculpture in Pieces: Peter Paul Rubens’s Miracles of Francis Xavier and the Visual Tradition of Broken Idols
• Stijn Bussels, Medusa’s Terror in the Amsterdam Town Hall: How to Look at Sculptures in the Dutch Golden Age
• Ruurd Halbertsma, ‘Admirari vel deridere’: Calvinistic Approaches to Classical Sculpture in the Netherlands
• Hans Christian Hönes, Allegory, Ornament, and Prehistory’s ‘Secret Influence’: D’Hancarville versus Winckelmann
• Tomas Macsotay, Baron D’Hancarville’s Recherches on the Evolution of Sculpture: Submerged Emblems and the Collective Self
• Bram van Oostveldt, ‘Ut Sculptura Theatrum’: On the Relation between Theatre and Sculpture in the Late Eighteenth Century
• Pascal Griener, Plaster versus Marble: Wilhelm and Caroline von Humboldt and the Agency of Antique Sculpture
• Caroline van Eck, How Does an Idol enter a Museum? Immersion and Aesthetic Autonomy at the Musée Charles X in the Louvre
• Cecilia Hurley, La présentation du ‘paragone’ dans les dispositifs muséaux au XIXe siècle
• Thomas Beaufils, Idoles de l’Île de Nias: Origines d’un Entichement Musèal





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