Exhibition | Artful Nature: Fashion and Theatricality, 1770–1830

Posted in exhibitions, lectures (to attend) by Editor on January 28, 2020

Opening next week at the Lewis Walpole Library:

Artful Nature: Fashion and Theatricality, 1770–1830
Lewis Walpole Library, Farmington, CT, 6 February — 22 May 2020

Curated by Laura Engel and Amelia Rauser

G. M. Woodward, ‘The Art of Fainting in Company’, 1797, hand-colored etching, Plate 7 from ‘An Olio of Good Breeding: With Sketches Illustrative of the Modern Graces!!’ (London, 1797).

Between 1770 and 1830, both fashionable dress and theatrical practice underwent dramatic changes in an attempt to become more ‘natural’. And yet this desire was widely recognized as paradoxical, since both fashion and the theater were longstanding tropes of artifice. In this exhibition, we examine this paradox of ‘artful nature’ through the changing conception of theatricality during these decades, as mirrored and expressed in fashionable dress. Theater and performance practices in the late eighteenth-century, including the vogue for private theatricals, reinforced the blurred lines between the theater and everyday life. Classical sculpture became a reference point for women, as its artistic excellence was acclaimed precisely because it seemed so ‘natural’. But when actresses, dancers, painters, or just regular fashionistas posed themselves as classical statues come to life, they acted as both Pygmalion and Galatea, both the genius artist and the living artwork. ‘Artful Nature’ refers simultaneously to the theatricality and deception typically attributed to fashionable women in the late eighteenth century, and at the same time to the potential survival strategies employed by women artists, authors, and actresses to craft their own parts. The exhibition is curated by Laura Engel, Professor of English at Duquesne University, and Amelia Rauser, Professor of Art History at Franklin & Marshall College.


Joseph Roach, Fashionable Enemies: Glamour as Argument, 1770–1830
Yale Center for British Art, New Haven, Thursday, 6 February, 5.30pm

Joseph Roach, Sterling Professor Emeritus of Theater and Professor Emeritus of English, Yale University, will deliver a keynote lecture in association with the opening of the exhibition Artful Nature: Fashion and Theatricality, 1770–1830.

Amelia Rauser and Laura Engel, Artful Nature
Lewis Walpole Library, Farmington, Wednesday, 13 May, 7.00pm

Amelia Rauser and Laura Engel, the curators of Artful Nature: Fashion and Theatricality, 1770–1830, discuss the exhibition. The talk is presented in collaboration with the Farmington Libraries. Space is limited, and registration is required.

Performance: Mary Berry’s Fashionable Friends
Cowles House, Lewis Walpole Library, Farmington, Friday, 15 May

Under the direction of Laura Engel, a performance based on Mary Berry’s Fashionable Friends, acted as an amateur theatrical at Strawberry Hill in November 1801, is planned for May 15, 2020 in the newly restored eighteenth-century Cowles House on the campus of The Lewis Walpole Library in Farmington, Connecticut.

Seminar | How to Write Articles for Publication

Posted in graduate students, opportunities by Editor on January 28, 2020

From ArtHist.net:

How to Write Articles for Publication
The Morgan Library & Museum, New York, 22 April 2020

Applications due by 2 March 2020

Join the editorial board of Master Drawings journal to learn strategies for translating your research into an article. A series of presentations will be followed by an interactive session in which participants will be divided into smaller groups to work closely with one of the journal’s editors. The seminar is open to 20 recent Ph.D. recipients and advanced graduate students in the history of art whose work focuses on drawings. The course takes place at The Morgan Library & Museum on Wednesday, April 22nd. The application deadline is March 2nd and should be submitted electronically with the subject header ‘Writing Seminar’ to administrator@masterdrawings.org. Participants will be notified by 1 April 2020. More information, as well as the online application form is available here. The seminar is made possible through the generous support of Baymeath Art Trust.

Call for Papers | Jewish Topographies

Posted in Calls for Papers by Editor on January 28, 2020

From ArtHist.net:

Jewish Topographies: 5th International Congress on Jewish Architecture
Technische Universität Braunschweig, 21–23 September 2020

Proposals due by 27 February 2020

Bet Tfila—Research Unit for Jewish Architecture in Europe will organize the conference Jewish Topographies: 5th International Congress on Jewish Architecture at the Technische Universität Braunschweig. The conference will focus on the meaning of the term ‘Jewish topography’ (jüdische Topographie) and also on how historical phenomena can be categorized both socially and culturally. Jewish residential areas and settlements, facilities of Jewish communities (such as synagogues, cemeteries, schools, or hospitals), or locations of companies and shops can form significant topographical networks in cities and landscapes. Jewish topographies stand in a spatial and social context with corresponding places of the non-Jewish population, in which different cultural, religious, or ethnic groups find their own spaces. Conflicts and cooperations, exclusions and limitations emerge in the spatial relationships between these locations and their respective urban and architectural design reflect the possibilities and expectations of the respective and related groups.

The conference aims at examining different levels of Jewish topographies: the spectrum of possible contributions ranges from macro studies to cross-region networks of Jewish communities or Jewish institutions and people (e. g., commercial networks, Verbandsfriedhöfe (association cemeteries)), to locations and facilities of the individual communities (e. g., Judengassen (Jews Lanes), eruv, DP-Camps), to micro studies of residential areas or individual facilities and buildings. Topographies of forced housing (such as ghettos, concentration camps, and Judenhäuser (Jewish houses) may also be discussed. Religious and profane places and objects will be viewed; synchronous and diachronic perspectives will also be welcomed. The focus of the conference is on developments after the Middle Ages. However, comparative studies on earlier epochs are as welcome as general theoretical and systematic studies, e. g., on symbolic, religious, and literary topographies. Ideas on how Jewish topographies can be appropriately researched, represented, and later conveyed may also be further subjects of discussion. The conference will be held in English.

Please send your abstract (max. 2400 characters) and your CV (max. 1200 characters) including your academic affiliation by 27 February 2020, to Dipl.-Ing. Mirko Przystawik (m.przystawik@tu-bs.de).

The academic board and the organizers will decide on acceptance by 12 March 2020. The publication of selected articles in the Bet Tfila’s Series of Publications is planned. The organizers endeavor to cover travel and accommodation costs for the speakers; this depends, however, on the approval of corresponding funding applications.

For any questions, please contact
Dipl.-Ing. Mirko Przystawik, m.przystawik@tu-bs.de
Dr.-Ing. Ulrich Knufinke, u-j.knufinke@tu-bs.de

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