Attingham Courses in 2023

Posted in opportunities by Editor on January 17, 2023

This year’s Attingham course offerings:

The Attingham Trust offers specialist courses for the study of historic houses and their collections based on contextual, in-situ study. Course members are drawn from different fields of the heritage sector, including curators, architects and architectural historians, conservators, academics, historic house managers, and decorative arts specialists from around the world. The clear objectives of the courses are to examine the architectural and social history of historic houses and palaces, to study their contents and collections, and to stimulate discussion on conservation, preservation, display, and interpretation. Group discussion is core to the programmes, and participants are expected to share their knowledge and expertise and engage with current debates.

Members of the Royal Collection Studies programme in the Print Room at Windsor Castle, looking at drawings by Holbein.

70th Attingham Summer School, 1–16 July 2023
Applications due by 29 January 2023

This intensive residential course will include visits to country houses in Sussex, Oxfordshire, Derbyshire, Northamptonshire, Norfolk, and Cambridgeshire. The course directors and visiting lecturers are established specialists in their fields, and the range of study is specifically chosen to address a wide curriculum with hands-on object study. In addition to architecture and planning, the focus is on the study of interiors, furniture, paintings, sculpture, ceramics, metalwork, plasterwork, textiles, and other applied arts. Limited scholarship funding is available. More detailed information can be found here»

Royal Collection Studies, 3–12 September 2023
Applications due by 12 February 2023

This annual course, a collaboration now in its 27th year with The Royal Collection, provides a ten-day immersive opportunity to study the British royal collection, one of the most outstanding collections of art and decorative art in the world. Based near Windsor, the course also examines the history of the collection and the key roles played by monarchs and their consorts over the centuries. Combining a mixture of lectures and tutorials, visits to both the occupied and unoccupied palaces in and around London, and close-up object study, Royal Collection Studies aims to give experienced professionals in the heritage sector a deeper understanding of this remarkable collection. Limited scholarship funding is available. More detailed information can be found here»

Attingham Study Programme: Andrea Palladio, Venice, and the Veneto, 18–26 September 2023
Applications due by 12 February 2023

The 2023 Study Programme will consider the impact of Palladian architecture, Venetian painting, sculpture, and decorative art on the development of the country house in Europe, Britain, and the USA. Based in and around Venice and its lagoon and accompanied by specialists in their field, the course will also consider the preservation, conservation, and ecology of Venice and its artistic legacy. More detailed information can be found here»

The London House Course, October 2023
Applications details forthcoming

This non-residential week-long course studies the development of the London house from the Renaissance to the present. It combines visits to houses with lectures by leading authorities. Progressing broadly chronologically and exploring all over London, the course takes members inside grand aristocratic buildings, smaller domestic houses, artists’ studios, and the garden suburb. More detailed information can be found here»

Call for Papers | (Dis-)Appropriation of Synagogue Architecture

Posted in Calls for Papers by Editor on January 17, 2023

Exterior of the building that now houses the German Historical Institute, Warsaw.

Pałac Karnickich, Warsaw. Constructed in 1877 for a government official and rebuilt after World War II, the building now houses the Deutsches Historisches Institut Warschau.

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From ArtHist.net and the Deutsches Historisches Institut Warschau:

Jewish or Common Heritage? (Dis-)appropriation of Synagogue Architecture in East-Central Europe since 1945
POLIN Museum of the History of Polish Jews and the German Historical Institute, Warsaw, 12–14 September 2023

Proposals due by 31 January 2023

The synagogues that remained standing after World War II have faced an uncertain destiny. As abandoned buildings, they were susceptible to decay quickly and, as former buildings of worship—for legal, cultural, and architectural reasons—posed a great challenge in terms of their reuse. Consequently, many synagogues simply fell into ruins, some were turned into secular buildings of various purposes, and few could have been used as houses of prayer again.

In postwar Europe, synagogue architecture was culturally categorized as an element of Jewish heritage that appeared to be isolated from the common heritage of a city or town—wherever a synagogue stood. At first, synagogues were not considered a shared but a distinct patrimony of a place. A shift in such a state of affairs could have been observed in the last three decades that witnessed a ‘rediscovery’ of synagogues. Though one can still find abandoned synagogues in small towns, in most of the bigger municipalities, these buildings were ‘rediscovered’ as a part of local history and culture and thus became part of the common heritage. In many regions of Europe, the ‘rediscovery’ of the former synagogues led to their restoration and opening to the public, and in rare cases, to their reuse by Jewish communities.

Interior of the POLIN Museum

“The Jewish Town / Muranów (1648–1772),” gallery of the Core Exhibition at the POLIN Museum of the History of Polish Jews, Warsaw (Photo by M. Starowieyska and D. Golik). More infromation»

These processes have already been quite well researched in western parts of Europe. A desideratum, however, is approach to the Jewish architectural heritage in those East-Central European territories, whose state affiliation changed after 1945 and whose population was exchanged. For example, in the former Eastern German territories, synagogues still standing at the end of the war became a foreign body in the urban space in a double sense. They neither belonged to the heritage of the new inhabitants, understood as ‘national’ or ‘own’, nor were they clearly attributable to the heritage of the pre-war German population. Synagogues were, therefore, not ‘hostile’ buildings, but in any case, they were irritating as characteristic objects of architecture. A contributing factor was that Jewish communities lasted only in a few cities in these areas.

The aim of the conference is a historicization of the processes of rediscovery in the recent past. We invite contributions linking the historical dimension in dealing with the Jewish architectural heritage with current developments in this field. The focus will be on the historical, political, and cultural preconditions and present processes having an impact on the handling of the Jewish built heritage. The key actors and decision-makers should also be taken into account. Therefore, the connection of the micro and macro levels is indispensable for the understanding of these developments because the impact of local actors and political decisions at the central level are closely interrelated. Global and memory culture trends have also contributed to the interest or disinterest in the respective religious buildings. In addition, transnational networks that influenced the preservation of synagogues will be considered, for example, in the context of the Polish-German dialogue.

The conference will not only discuss examples of a ‘successful rediscovery’ of Jewish architectural monuments. The aim is rather to draw conclusions about broader contexts based on concrete examples. It may be possible to identify patterns that indicate ‘success’ or ‘failure’ of the rediscovery. We also invite contributions that would pose the question of a model of a ‘successful’ or ‘failed’ rediscovery. If possible, however, the focus should be on those East- Central European cities or regions whose territorial affiliation changed in the wake of World War II.

The conference is a cooperation of Bet Tfila – Research Unit for Jewish Architecture in Europe at TU Braunschweig, GHI Warsaw and POLIN Museum of the History of Polish Jews. It takes place within the framework of the “DFG Priority Program 2357: Jewish Cultural Heritage,” which is funded by the German Research Foundation. The conference will take place 12–14 September 2023 at the POLIN Museum for the History of Polish Jews and at the German Historical Institute in Warsaw. Travel costs to and from the conference can be reimbursed within the usual limits.

Submissions will be accepted from any discipline as long as the topic relates to this broad theme. Scholars, experts, and practitioners are welcome. Abstracts should be 200–300 words. Although we welcome speakers from any country, the language of the conference will be English. For best consideration, please submit your abstract and a short CV by 31 January 2023 to Kamila Lenartowicz (k.lenartowicz@tu-braunschweig.de) and Christhardt Henschel (henschel@dhi.waw.pl). Applicants will be informed about their participation by 14 March 2023.

• Kamila Lenartowicz and Zuzanna Światowy (Bet Tfila – Research Unit for Jewish Architecture in Europe, Technische Universität Braunschweig)
• Christhardt Henschel (German Historical Institute, Warsaw)
• Aleksandra Jakubczak-Gabay (POLIN Museum of the History of Polish Jews)

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For the American context, see Mark Gordon, “Rediscovering Jewish Infrastructure: 2022 Update on United States Eighteenth- and Nineteenth-Century Synagogues,” American Jewish Historical Society (4 November 2021), available here. CH

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Note (added 18 January 2023) — More information on the polychrome ceiling, a life-sized wooden replica of the ceiling of the synagogue of Gwoździec at the POLIN Museum, is available here at Enfilade (now largely out-dated) and here with Ariel Fein’s essay for SmartHistory (4 April 2022).

Call for Papers | Listening In: Architectures, Cities, Landscapes

Posted in Calls for Papers by Editor on January 17, 2023


From the conference website:

Listening In: Conversations on Architectures, Cities, and Landscapes, 1700–1900
ETH Zurich, 14–15 September 2023

Proposals due by 10 March 2023

Who do we listen to when we write histories of architectures, cities, and landscapes? How many women authors can we find among our sources? How many of them are cited by those whose research we read? We argue that women and other marginalised groups have always been part of conversations on architectures, cities, and landscapes—but we have not had the space to listen to them. This conference is an invitation to reconstruct such conversations, real, imagined, and metaphorical ones, taking place in the 18th and 19th centuries, in any region, in order to diversify the ways we write histories. Taking the art of conversation, integral as both practice and form to the period in Western thought, and repurposing it to dismantle the exclusivity of historiography, this conference calls for contributions which bring women into dialogue with others.

Listening In proposes a new approach to the ‘canon’ and its protagonists. Rather than either fighting its existence or expanding it by means of ‘exceptions to the rule’, we call for the setting up of productive conversations. We acknowledge that the canon never exists on its own; instead, it is shaped by what Griselda Pollock has called “that which, while repressed, is always present as its structuring other” (1999, 8). This conference is envisaged as a listening exercise. We regard a conversation as both codified practice as well as a specific act of verbal exchange, spoken or written, on a particular subject—here architectures, cities, and landscapes—occurring in a specific site, from street to salon, kitchen to court, construction site to theatre, field to church, or book to newspaper, to name but a few.

We invite papers on conversations that grapple with hierarchies and inequalities, incorporating asymmetrical power relationships while taking care not to gloss over the struggle, pain, and conflict often occurring in these situations. Papers should highlight at least one protagonist identifying as a woman, and are encouraged to also listen to
• persons marginalised because of their race, class, religion, sexual orientation, or else,
• so-called ‘canonical’ figures, both architects and critics as well as those from other professions, disciplines, or domains,
• individuals from different geographical regions, including those affected by the violence of imperialism and colonialism.

Can a focus on conversations help to include in historiography new protagonists as well as sites which we have so far not seen? How about printed sites, in pamphlets, books, magazines, newspapers, or letter writing? And what are the critical notions around which these conversations occur, such as the sublime, character, or sensibility, but also those emerging from indigenous or non-western knowledges, on different sites and in different media? Further, what shifts, if we start from conversations, rather than, for instance, drawings and buildings? How will it affect histories of architectures, cities, and landscapes if these conversations are inclusive rather than exclusive?

This call invites contributions from and on all regions, particularly those that centre intersectional marginalisations. We are interested to hear about every-day experiences and sites so far less explored as well as new reflections on better-known events and structures. We hope to attract speakers from diverse regions, disciplines, backgrounds, and career stages, who are willing to engage with new materials in innovative ways, listening to each other and our sources. The conference is planned as a focused, single-strand event aimed at creating networks of scholars, facilitating exchanges, stimulating groundbreaking discussions, and producing new knowledges.

Listening In is organised in the context of two externally funded research projects based at gta, ETH Zurich: WoWA (Women Writing Architecture 1700–1900) is funded by the ERC, led by Anne Hultzsch, and studies female experiences of architecture and landscapes as recorded in women’s writings from South America and Europe. The SNSF-funded project Building Identity: Character in Architectural Discourse and Design 1750–1850, led by Sigrid de Jong and Maarten Delbeke, focuses on the uses and meaning of the notion of ‘character’ in architectural criticism and practice. Both projects share an interest in the experiences of marginalised groups, especially those who identified as women, and strive to have them heard not in a niche, but in the centre of our field. With this conference we wish to open up our approaches to a wider field of research, going beyond our respective geographical frameworks.

Please submit the following by 10 March 2023 to listening@arch.ethz.ch
• an abstract of no more than 300 words
• your name and professional affiliation if any
• a short curriculum vitae (ca 100 words)

Key Dates
1 December 2022 Launch call for papers
10 March 2023 Deadline to submit abstracts
April 2023 Paper selection and notification of authors
1 May 2023 Speakers confirm their participation
14–15 September 2023 Conference at ETH Zurich, Switzerland

PD Dr Anne Hultzsch
Dr Sigrid de Jong
Prof Maarten Delbeke
Dr Sol Pérez Martínez

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