New Book | Rhapsodic Objects

Posted in books by Editor on January 10, 2022

From De Gruyter:

Yaëlle Biro and Noémie Étienne, eds., Rhapsodic Objects: Art, Agency, and Materiality, 1700–2000 (Berlin: De Gruyter, 2022) 236 pages, ISBN: 97-83110656640, $80. Also available as a free PDF file from the publisher.

Circulation and imitation are key factors in shaping the material world. The authors in this volume explore how technical knowledge, immaterial desires, and political agendas impact the production and consumption of visual and material culture across times and places. Their essays map multidirectional transactions for cultural goods in which source countries can be positioned at the center. Rhapsodic—literally to stitch or weave songs—paired with objects—from thrown against—intertwines complexity and action. Rhapsodic objects thus beckons to the layered narratives of the objects themselves, their making, and their reception over time. The concept further underlines their potential to express creativity, generate emotion, and reveal histories—often tainted with violence.

Edited by Yaëlle Biro (Metropolitan Museum of Art) and Noémie Étienne (Universität Bern).


Yaelle Biro and Noemie Etienne, Introduction

Part 1 | Interlaced Patterns
• Dorothy Armstrong, Wandering Designs: The Repossession of the ‘Oriental’ Carpet and Its Imaginary
• Aziza Gril-Mariotte, The Art of Printed Textiles: Selecting Motifs in the Eighteenth Century
• Chonja Lee, Chintzes as Printed Matter and Their Entanglement within the Transatlantic Slave Trade around 1800

Part 2 | Embedded Relationships
• James Green, Interpretations of Central African Taste in European Trade Cloth of the 1890s
• Helen Glaister, The Picturesque in Peking: European Decoration at the Qing Court
• Rémi Labrusse and Bernadette Nadia Saou-Dufrêne, Cultural Intersections and Identity in Algeria on the Eve of the French Invasion: The Case of the Bey Palace in Constantine

Part 3 | Crafted Identities
• Ashley V. Miller, ‘What Is Colonial Art? And How Can It Be Modern?’: Design and Modernity in France and Morocco, 1925
• Victoria L. Rovine, Crafting Colonial Power: Weaving and Empire in France and French West Africa
• Thomas Grillot, A World of Knowledge: Recreating Lakota Horse Effigies
• Gail Levin, Frida Kahlo’s Circulating Crafts: Her Painting and Her Identities

Picture Credits

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