Enfilade

Exhibition | Model Citizens

Posted in exhibitions by internjmb on August 31, 2017
Susan Merrill, Memorial to Mrs. Lydia Emery (1717–1800), 1811; watercolor on silk
(Portland Museum of Art, 1968.4)

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From the Portland Museum of Art:

Model Citizens: Art and Identity in the United States, 1770–1830
  Portland Museum of Art, 10 September 2017 — 28 January 2018

Model Citizens: Art and Identity in the United States, 1770–1830 presents works from the PMA’s permanent collection by the most celebrated artists of the early United States alongside portrait miniatures, samples, and silhouettes. This wide range of visual culture provides a glimpse into how late 18th- and early 19th-century Americans elected to represent themselves in private and public spheres as husbands, wives, children, and citizens.

Arranged in three sections, the exhibition uses the life cycle as an organizing principle to introduce viewers to the many modes of self-representation popular in the era, from finely painted portraits by Gilbert Stuart and Thomas Badger to modestly-scaled cut silhouettes and mourning embroideries. The first section showcases paintings of children alongside embroidered samplers produced by the young women of the Stone family at Portland’s Miss Martins’ School. This portion provides a glimpse of how families understood lineage as well as how painters helped visualize changing ideas about the nature of childhood. The samplers show how young, upper-class women expressed their creativity and accomplishment. The second section features works that portray grown men and women, often commemorating major life events such as marriage. In addition to paired portraits and individual works by renown painters such as Stuart and John Singleton Copley, this section will also feature silhouettes and minatures—small-scale, modestly priced works that allowed sitters to circulate likenesses among family and friends. The final section presents examples of men and women at the end of life such as the PMA’s newly acquired portrait of Judge Stephen Jones, who was in his eighties when he sat for Gilbert Stuart. This section will also include mourning emroideries to underscore how early Americans used painting and needle work to commemorate loved ones after death.

Generously supported by Shannon C. Gordon with additional support from Friends of the Collection.

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Exhibition | Louis-Nicolas van Blarenberghe and the Battle of Yorktown

Posted in exhibitions by Editor on August 30, 2017

Louis-Nicolas Van Blarenberge, The Siege of Yorktown, 1786; gouache on panel, 24 × 37 inches
(Private Collection of Nicholas Taubman)

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Press release (24 August 2017) from the Museum of the American Revolution:

Louis-Nicolas van Blarenberghe and the Battle of Yorktown
Museum of the American Revolution, Philadelphia, until 24 September 2017

Only one month remains to see two 18th-century paintings depicting the last major land battle of the Revolutionary War on display at the Museum of the American Revolution. The paintings, The Siege of Yorktown and The Surrender of Yorktown, are incredibly detailed and populated with hundreds of tiny figures, like 18th-century ‘Where’s Waldo?’ scenes. The original versions of the paintings were created for King Louis XVI by French artist Louis-Nicolas van Blarenberghe, the court Painter of Battles to the King. Those paintings are on display at the Palace of Versailles. The paintings on view at the Museum of the American Revolution are secondary versions created by Van Blarenberghe in 1786 for French General the Comte de Rochambeau, the commander of the French forces at Yorktown. The paintings remained in the Rochambeau family until about 15 years ago and are in pristine condition.

“We are thrilled to be able to offer our visitors the extraordinary opportunity to view these incredible, richly detailed paintings,” said Museum President Michael Quinn. “The discovery of previously undetected differences between the two sets of paintings is a fascinating detective story, making the paintings all the more intriguing.”

Louis-Nicolas Van Blarenberge, The Siege of Yorktown, 1786; gouache on panel, 24 × 37 inches.

Having researched the paintings, Christopher Bryant, a Massachusetts-based independent scholar and dealer of historical portraits and artifacts, believes that Rochambeau gave direction to Van Blarenberghe in the execution of the paintings on display at the Museum. Bryant argues that, given the interest taken by Rochambeau in the paintings as visual records of the crowning achievement of his career and the fact that he was an eyewitness to the events depicted, the differences between the paintings are likely corrections made from the originals, rendering Rochambeau’s copies even more historically accurate than those painted for King Louis XVI.

Louis-Nicolas Van Blarenberge, The Surrender of Yorktown, 1786; gouache on panel, 24 × 37 inches.

The most prominent alteration to the 1786 version of the Siege is the addition of a group of American officers near the figure of Rochambeau. While the original painting includes only one American officer holding a map, the replica depicts a group of ten officers gathered around that original figure, now identifiable as General George Washington. The map he holds can be identified as a plan drawn by Lafayette’s cartographer of the British fortifications at Yorktown. Interestingly, this same scene is reprised in Louis-Charles-Auguste Couder’s Siege of Yorktown (1836), a 19th-century copy of which is displayed on the Museum’s second floor.

“These paintings are remarkable in being superb works of art while also being extraordinarily accurate and detailed. It is very rare that you have that combination as those two circumstances are usually mutually exclusive,” said Bryant. “However, these paintings are both: they are wonderful paintings on an artistic basis, but there is also so much historical information within them that can be independently corroborated, that they can now be seen as important historical documents in their own right. The Surrender provides one of the most accurate accounts of this historic event known.”

Other changes to the paintings include alterations to the uniforms worn by Rochambeau and Washington, several topographical revisions, and the addition of a tree to obscure portions of a scene in Surrender. Van Blarenberghe also altered the location of the Metz Artillery, the senior French artillery present at the battle, within the Surrender painting. This change reveals the important role the Metz Artillery played in the surrender ceremony.

The paintings, on short-term loan from Ambassador and Mrs. Nicholas F. Taubman, are located in one of the Museum’s final galleries that explores the battles and skirmishes in 1781 that culminated with the Siege of—and ultimately, the Surrender of General Cornwallis’s 6,000-man British army at—Yorktown, Virginia. They will be replaced with two 18th-century prints from the Museum’s collection, one of British General Charles Cornwallis and one of British Lieutenant Colonel Banastre Tarleton.

 

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New Book | The Art of Painting in Colonial Bolivia

Posted in books by Editor on August 29, 2017

From Saint Joseph’s University Press:

Suzanne Stratton-Pruitt, ed., The Art of Painting in Colonial Bolivia / El arte de la pintura en Bolivia colonial (Philadelphia: Saint Joseph’s University Press, 2017), 530 pages, ISBN: 978 1945402 319, $120.

This anthological volume is dedicated to the art of painting in pre-independence Bolivia, prompted by the belief that a compendium of handsomely photographed, full-color images will bring renewed public and scholarly attention to a rich cultural heritage that has not received its due. An ambitious round of new photography has been joined by an international roster of scholarly contributors from the United States, Argentina, Peru, and Bolivia to offer both the general reader and specialists an overview of the art of painting in the region of South America once called ‘Charcas’ and later ‘Alto Perú’. Attention is brought to the role of European subjects and styles in the development of regional forms of expression, as well as the influence of art and artists from Cuzco, Peru. Works by painters active in La Paz, Sucre, and Potosí such as Leonardo Flores, Melchor Pérez Holguín, and Gaspar Miguel de Berrío have received close reading of iconographical themes that were often of particularly local interest.

Suzanne L. Stratton-Pruitt has, from the mid-1970s, taught, published, and curated exhibitions about Spanish Early Modern art, for which she was awarded the Lazo de Dama de la Orden de Isabel la Católica. Since 2003 she has focused on Spanish colonial art, co-editing with Joseph J. Rishel the catalogue of the exhibition The Arts in Latin America 1492–1820 (Philadelphia Museum of Art, 2006). As curator of the Carl and Marilynn Thoma Collection of Spanish Colonial Painting, she organized the exhibition catalogue The Virgin, Saints, and Angels: South American Paintings 1600–1825 from the Thoma Collection (Milan: Skira editore, 2006). Stratton-Pruitt edited The Art of Painting in Colonial Quito/El arte de la pintura en Quito colonial (Philadelphia: Saint Joseph’s University Press, 2012) as well as Journeys to New Worlds: Spanish and Portuguese Colonial Art in the Roberta and Richard Huber Collection (Philadelphia Museum of Art, 2013), and she wrote about “Paintings in the Home in Spanish Colonial America” for the catalogue of the exhibition Behind Closed Doors: Art in the Spanish-American Home 1492–1898 (Brooklyn Museum, 2013).

C O N T E N T S

Mitchell Codding, Prologue / Prólogo
Acknowledgments / Agradecimientos

Essays

Suzanne Stratton-Pruitt, The Art of Painting in Colonial Bolivia 1600&1825 / El arte de la pintura en la Bolivia colonial, 1600&1825
• Philipp Schauer, Mural Painting in Bolivia / Pintura mural en la Bolivia
• Ramón Mujica Pinilla, The Pillars of Hercules in Charcas: Imperial Visual Politics in the Viceregal Art in Bolivia / Las columnas de Hércules en Charcas: Política visual imperial en el arte virreinal boliviano
• Almerindo Ojeda Di Ninno, The Use of Prints in Spanish Colonial Art: Approaching the Bolivian Corpus / El uso de grabados en el arte colonial: Una aproximación al corpus boliviano
• Carolyn C. Wilson, The Image of Saint Joseph in a Selection of Colonial Paintings in Bolivian Collections / La imagen de San José en una selección de pinturas coloniales en colecciones bolivianas
• Jaime Mariazza F., Portraiture in the Real Audiencia of Charcas / El retrato en la Real Audienca de Charcas
• Agustina Rodríguez Romero, Old Testament Paintings in Colonial Bolivia: A Remote Past for New Believers / Pinturas del Antiguo Testamento en la Bolivia colonial: Un pasado remoto para nuevos creyentes
• Jeffrey Schrader, Statue Paintings: The Wayfaring Marian Images of Spain in Bolivia / Pinturas de estatua: Las imágenes españolas viajares de María en Bolivia
• Maya Stanfield-Mazzi, Uniquely American Visions of the Virgin Mary / Imágenes unívocamente americanas de la Virgen María
• Gustavo Tudisco, Mountains, Volcanoes, Stones and Promontories: Eighteenth-Century Marian Devotion and Painting in the Andes / Montañas, volcanes, piedras y promontorios. El culto a María en los Andes y la pintura devocional del siglo XVIII
• Jeanette Favrot Peterson, Through Ocaña’s Eyes: Our Lady of Guadalupe in Sucre, Bolivia / A través de la mirada de Ocaña: Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe en Sucre, Bolivia
• Adriana Pacheco Bustillos, The Nuns of Colonial Bolivia and the Art of Painting / Las monjas en la Bolivia colonial y el arte de la pintura
• Gabriela Siracusano, The Carabuco Paintings of the ‘Four Last Things’ /La pinturas de las Postrimerías de Carabuco
• Lucía Querejazu Escobari, Iconography and Ideology in the Paintings of Caquiaviri / Iconografía e Iconología en las pinturas de Caquiaviri

Iconographical Studies / Estudios iconográficos

With contributions by Suzanne Stratton-Pruitt, Lucía Querejazu Escobari, Agustina Romero Rodríguez, Héctor Schenone, and Gustavo Tudisco

• The Painted Decoration of the Church of Jerusalem, Potosí / La decoración pintada de la Iglesia de Jerusalén de Potosí
• The Presbytery at the Sanctuary of Copacabana, Bolivia / Decoración del Presbiterio del Santuario de Copacabana, Bolivia
• Christ Crucified with Saints, Church of Santo Domingo, Sucre / Crucificado de Santo Domingo de Sucre
• Christ Carrying the Cross / Cristo con la cruz a cuestas
• The Passion of Christ / La Pasión de Cristo
• Christ of Malta / El Cristo de Malta
• ‘True Portraits’ of Jesus Christ and the Virgin Mary / ‘Retratos Verdaderos’ de Jesucristo y de la Virgen María
• Praise be / Alabado Sea
• The Soul of Mary / El Alma de María
• Our Lady of Succor / Nuestra Señora de Socorro
• Our Lady of Remedies of La Paz / Nuestra Señora de los Remedios de La Paz
• Our Lady of Multiple Devotions / Nuestra Señora de Advocaciones Múltiples
• Mary, Queen of Heaven / María, Reina del Cielo
• The Divine Shepherdess / La Divina Pastora
• Presentation of the Chasuble to Saint Ildephonsus / La imposición de la casulla a San Ildefonso
• Our Lady of Soterraña of Nieva / Nuestra Señora de Soterraña de Nieva
• The Virgin of the Immaculate Conception in Paintings in Colonial Bolivia / La Virgen de la Inmaculada Concepción en las pinturas de la Bolivia colonial
• The Painted Angels of Colonial Bolivia / Las pinturas de ángeles de la Bolivia colonial
• Saint Nicholas of Tolentino and Saint Nicholas of Bari / San Nicolás de Tolentino y San Nicholás de Bari
• Saint Augustine, Patron Saint of the Rich Hill of Potosí / San Agustín, Santo Patrono del Cerro Rico de Potosí
• Virgin Saints and Martyrs / Vírgenes Santas y Mártires

Bibliography/ Bibliografía
Index/ Índice
Contributors / Autores

 

 

Exhibition | Streams and Mountains

Posted in exhibitions by Editor on August 28, 2017

Ten Thousand Miles along the Yellow River, detail, 1690–1722; Chinese, Qing Dynasty (1644–1911); two handscrolls; ink, color, and gold on silk; image is 78 × 1285 cm (New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2006.272a, b). More information is available here»

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Press release (10 August) from The Met:

Streams and Mountains without End: Landscape Traditions of China
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 26 August 2017 — 6 January 2019 (with three rotations)

Curated by Joseph Scheier-Dolberg

From the standpoint of splendid scenery, painting cannot equal [real] landscape. But when it comes to the wonders of brush and ink, [real] landscape is no match for painting!  —Dong Qichang (1555–1636)

About a thousand years ago, the legendary Chinese landscape painter Guo Xi posed the question, “In what does a gentleman’s love of landscape consist?” This question is at the heart of The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Streams and Mountains without End: Landscape Traditions of China.

Showcasing more than 120 Chinese landscape paintings in three rotations, Streams and Mountains without End explores the many uses of landscape in the Chinese visual arts. The focus is on paintings, but textiles, ceramics, bamboo carvings, and objects in other materials are also included. Arranged in thematic groupings, the works in the exhibition have been selected to provide gateways into the tradition, drawing out distinctions between types of landscape that may not be obvious at first glance. What appears to be a simple mountain dwelling is revealed to be the villa of the painter’s friend, which encodes a wish for his happy retirement; what seems to be a simple study in dry brushwork turns out to be an homage to an old master, a sign of reverence for what had come before. The exhibition brings the tradition to life by showing the layers of meaning that lie behind these ubiquitous images of tree, stream, and mountain. A quotation from classical Chinese painting theory introduces each grouping, giving the tradition itself a voice in the exhibition. The works in the exhibition are drawn primarily from The Met collection, supplemented by a dozen works from private lenders. The exhibition is made possible by the Joseph Hotung Fund.

Among the show’s highlights are a Song dynasty (960–1279) handscroll, Two Landscapes Inspired by the Poetry of Du Fu, a rare example of early literati painting, attributed to Sima Huai (Chinese, active ca. 1131–62); a 15th-century handscroll, The Four Seasons, which takes the viewer through an extended journey; the 1571 handscroll Fantastic Scenery in the Human Realm, a dynamic landscape of bizarre and contorted forms, by Wen Boren; and two majestic landscapes from the Qing dynasty court: Ten Thousand Miles along the Yellow River, dated to 1690–1722, and the The Qianlong Emperor’s Southern Inspection Tour, scroll four, dated 1770, by Xu Yang (active ca. 1750–after 1776).

In conjunction with the exhibition, The Met’s Education Department is offering tours led by the exhibition organizer Joseph Scheier-Dolberg, Assistant Curator in the Museum’s Department of Asian Art, on September 27 and November 8; the one-hour tours start at 10:30am.

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Exhibition | Leonardo to Matisse: Master Drawings

Posted in exhibitions by Editor on August 28, 2017

From The Met:

Leonardo to Matisse: Master Drawings from the Robert Lehman Collection
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 4 October 2017 — 7 January 2018

Curated by by Dita Amory and Alison Nogueira

Jean Auguste Dominique Ingres, Study for ‘Raphael and the Fornarina'(?), ca. 1814; graphite on white wove paper, 25.4 × 19.7 cm (New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Robert Lehman Collection, 1975.1.646).

This exhibition will trace the development of European drawing from the Renaissance to the early 20th century through works by celebrated masters such as Leonardo da Vinci, Dürer, Rembrandt, Tiepolo, Ingres, Seurat, and Matisse. Fifty-five drawings from the Museum’s acclaimed Robert Lehman Collection will present a dynamic array of styles, techniques, and genres—from panoramic landscapes and compositional studies for mythological and biblical narratives to arresting studies of the human form.

The selection will illustrate different facets of the artists’ creative processes—from Leonardo’s keen anatomical observation in his Study of a Bear, to Dürer’s awakening self-consciousness as an artist in his Self-Portrait study, to Rembrandt’s reinterpretation of Leonardo’s painted masterpiece, The Last Supper. The exhibition will also be the first to explore Robert Lehman’s significant activity as a 20th-century collector by highlighting the full range of his vast and distinguished drawings collection, which numbers more than 700 sheets.

The exhibition is organized by Dita Amory, Curator in Charge, and Alison Nogueira, Associate Curator, both of the Robert Lehman Collection at The Met.

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New Book | Enchanted World of German Romantic Prints

Posted in books, catalogues, exhibitions by Editor on August 27, 2017

The related exhibition was on display at the Philadelphia Museum of Art in the autumn of 2013. From Yale UP:

John Ittmann, ed., with essays by Warren Breckman, Mitchell B. Frank, Cordula Grewe, John Ittmann, Catriona MacLeod, and F. Carlo Schmid, Enchanted World of German Romantic Prints, 1770–1850 (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2017), 424 pages, ISBN: 978 03001 97624, $65.

From the 1770s through the 1840s, German, Austrian, and Swiss artists used the medium of printmaking to create works that synthesized poetry, literature, music, and the visual arts in new and captivating ways. Finding an eager audience in the growing number of educated middle-class collectors, printmakers experimented with modern technologies, such as lithography, and drew on the contemporary interest in regional folklore and traditional fairy tales to produce innovative compositions that both contributed to and reflected the dramatic cultural and political upheavals of the Romantic era. Featuring the work of more than 120 artists, including Casper David Friedrich, Ludwig Emil Grimm, Joseph Anton Koch, Philipp Otto Runge, and Johann Gottfried Schadow, this authoritative book contains many unique and never-before-published examples of prints from the Philadelphia Museum of Art’s unrivaled collection.

John Ittmann is the Kathy and Ted Fernberger Curator of Prints at the Philadelphia Museum of Art.

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Bellotto’s ‘Fortress of Königstein’ Acquired by NG, London

Posted in museums by Editor on August 24, 2017

Bernardo Bellotto, The Fortress of Königstein from the North, ca. 1756–58; oil on canvas, 132 × 236 cm
(London: The National Gallery)

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Press release from The National Gallery:

The Fortress of Königstein from the North by Bernardo Bellotto (1722–1780), which was due to be exported from Britain, has been saved for the nation and went on display in Trafalgar Square today (Tuesday, 22 August 2017).

Bernardo Bellotto’s works are among the very greatest of 18th-century view paintings, and The Fortress of Königstein from the North is one of the finest examples. It stands out as a highly evocative and beautiful depiction of a fortified location within an extensive panoramic landscape, and has no real parallel in European painting. If Bellotto was once overlooked in favour of his more famous uncle, Canaletto, today he is recognised as one of the most distinctive artistic personalities of his century. The acquisition of this masterpiece by the National Gallery will cement Bellotto’s reputation with both British and international visitors, giving him a significant place on the walls at Trafalgar Square that is long overdue.

The National Gallery is very strong in 18th-century view paintings; however, almost all of its works are of Italian sites. Bellotto’s The Fortress of Königstein from the North is the first major 18th-century landscape at the National Gallery to depict a Northern European view, and so this acquisition creates a bridge between Northern and Southern European painting in the collection.

The £11,670,000 acquisition was made possible thanks to a generous legacy from Mrs. Madeline Swallow, a £550,000 grant from Art Fund, contributions from the American Friends of the National Gallery and the National Gallery Trust, and the support of Howard and Roberta Ahmanson, the Deborah Loeb Brice Foundation, the Manny and Brigitta Davidson Charitable Foundation, the Sackler Trust, and other individual donors, trusts, and foundations.

The vast panoramic painting (132 × 236cm) depicts the Fortress of Königstein, near Dresden, and is one of a series of five large-scale views of the ancient hilltop fortress commissioned by Augustus III, King of Poland and Elector of Saxony, in about 1756. Here, the fortress is seen perched atop a crag, its fortifications providing an imposing contrast to the verdant landscape that surrounds it, in which peasants talk and work. Bellotto combines topographical accuracy in the fortress with pastoral invention in the figures. Imbued with a monumentality rarely seen in 18th-century Italian view painting, The Fortress of Königstein from the North dramatically illustrates the very different direction in which Bellotto took the Venetian tradition of the veduta.

The escalation of the Seven Years’ War in Saxony—a war that reshaped the balance of power in Europe—just after the series was commissioned meant that the views of Konigstein were never delivered. All five paintings were imported into Britain, probably during Bellotto’s lifetime, and they all remained in this country until 1993 when one of them was sold to Washington.* Unlike Canaletto, Bellotto is today underrepresented in the UK: there are just thirteen Bellotto paintings in British public collections, nearly all Italian views and mostly minor works.

Visitors can see The Fortress of Königstein from the North as part of a special display in Room 40 dedicated to its purchase. In early 2018 it will move to Room 38 and hang alongside works by fellow Italian view painters, his uncle Canaletto, and Canaletto’s successor in Venice, Francesco Guardi. The painting will also be the focus of wide-ranging public programmes engaging audiences nationwide, including a touring exhibition and educational programmes at museums across the UK.

* Locations of the other four works in the series: The Fortress of Königstein from the South (Knowsley Hall, UK), The Fortress of Königstein from the North-West (The National Gallery of Art, Washington D.C.), The Fortress of Königstein: Courtyard with the Brunnenhaus and The Fortress of Königstein: Courtyard with the Magdalenenburg, (both Manchester Art Gallery).

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Paul Mellon Centre Publication Grants

Posted in opportunities, resources by Editor on August 23, 2017

From the PMC:

Paul Mellon Centre Publication Grants
Applications due by 30 September 2017

The Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art offers a variety of Fellowships (for individuals) and Grants (for institutions and individuals) twice a year in a strictly timetabled schedule. The programme supports scholarship, academic research and the dissemination of knowledge in the field of British art and architectural history from the medieval period to the present, although all supported topics must have an historical perspective.

We do not offer fellowships and grants in the fields of archaeology, the current practice of architecture or the performing arts. We have no discretionary funds outside our stated programme.

Publication Grants are offered annually. They are awarded to publishers, institutions and/or authors to offset costs incurred in producing works of scholarship in print or in other media. Grants are intended to make possible publications and articles which would otherwise not appear or which would appear in reduced specification.

The Paul Mellon Centre supports scholarly publications concerned with the study of British art and architectural history in both print and online format. Applications will be considered for both long (monographs, catalogues, edited volumes) and short form (articles) texts.

Publisher Costs
A maximum grant of £7,000 is available when applied for by a Publisher to support costs associated with the production of long-form publications in print or digital format. The following costs may be claimed:
• Printing and binding
• Design and layout
• Licensing of images, reproduction and copyright costs
•  Graphics
• Indexing
• Production

Author Costs
A maximum grant of £3,000 is available to support costs incurred by authors for long-form publications, or £1,000 for a short-form publications, in either print or digital format. The following costs may be claimed:
• Licensing of images, reproduction and copyright costs
• Commission of new photography
• Commission of graphics

Joint applications from Authors and Publishers may be considered for a maximum of £10,000 (£7,000 towards production costs and £3,000 towards the reproduction costs incurred by the Author) with the fund being paid in a lump sum to the Publisher.

Alternatively, a Publisher may apply separately for publishing costs of up to £7,000 or an Author may apply separately for costs concerning image reproductions of up to £3,000. Only one grant application can be made per publication.

A smaller amount of up to £1,000 can be applied for by an Author working on an article (in print or online) for image licencing costs.

Publication projects should be ready to go to press or appear online within two years from January 2018. The Centre does not make any retrospective awards for books already published nor will it accept applications for funding for books due to be published before the end of 2017.

New Book | Reconstructing the Lansdowne Collection

Posted in books by Editor on August 22, 2017

Published by Hirmer and distributed by The University of Chicago Press:

Elizabeth Angelicoussis, Reconstructing the Lansdowne Collection of Classical Marbles (Munich: Hirmer, 2017), 2 vols., 624 pages, ISBN: 978 37774 28178, £60 / $80.

Begun by Gavin Hamilton (1723–1798), one of the most prominent British explorers of classical sites of the eighteenth century, the Lansdowne Collection came to hold more than one hundred stellar examples of classical statuary, displayed in a specially designed gallery in Lansdowne-House in London. The collection, however, was dispersed in the years after 1930, and its works are now scattered across the globe. This book reunites the collection, under the expert guidance of Roman sculpture specialist Elizabeth Angelicoussis. Volume one relates the history of the collection and the gallery, while the second catalogs and assess each known sculpture, setting it in the context of the most current research into Roman art history.

Elizabeth Angelicoussis is a fellow of the Society of Antiquarians, a member of the Institute of Classical Studies, London, and a senior member of the American School of Classical Studies, Athens.

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Searching for Wrecked Slaving Ships

Posted in the 18th century in the news by Editor on August 21, 2017

The House of Slaves (Maison des Esclaves) with the narrow door, the Point-of-no-return, through which slaves were loaded onto ships bound for the Americas, visible in the center. The building opened as a museum in 1962. Photo by Robin Elaine (3 September 2004), Wikimedia Commons.

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As reported by AFP, via Art Daily (20 August 2017). . .

Staring out to sea [off the coast of Dakar] on a flawlessly sunny day, underwater archaeologist Ibrahima Thiaw visualises three shipwrecks once packed with slaves that now lie somewhere beneath Senegal’s Atlantic waves. He wants more than anything to find them.

Thiaw has spent years scouring the seabed off the island of Gorée, once a west African slaving post, never losing hope of locating the elusive vessels with a small group of graduate students from Dakar’s Cheikh Anta Diop University. Gorée was the largest slave-trading centre on the African coast between the 15th and 19th century, according to the UN’s cultural agency UNESCO, and Thiaw believes his mission has a moral purpose: to heal the open wounds that slavery has left on the continent.

“This is not just for the fun of research or scholarship. It touches us and our humanity and I think that slavery in its afterlife still has huge scars on our modern society,” he said, pulling on a wetsuit and rubber boots for the day’s first dive.

Thiaw believes his native Senegal, with its own long and violent history of trade in human flesh, could tell the world more about how modern capitalism was founded on violence inflicted on African bodies. . . .

Thiaw, who originates from a rural area of Senegal but went on to study in the United States [earning a PhD from Rice University], had become known for his research into slaves’ living conditions on Goree island when he was approached three years ago by the US National Park Service and National Museum of African American History and Culture to find a west African base for their ‘Slave Wrecks Project‘. . . .

The trio of wrecks Thiaw seeks—the Nanette, the Bonne Amitie, and the Racehorse—all disappeared off Gorée in the 18th century, taking with them crucial evidence of how enslaved Africans were carried across the harrowing Middle Passage. . . .

The full article is available here»

Kevin Sieff reported on the project for The Washington Post (20 August 2017), available here»