Left: Gilles Demarteau after Edme Bouchardon, Model Posing for ‘The Genius of Summer’, ca. 1740s–50s (Los Angeles: Getty Research Institute, 2015.PR.58). Right: Edme Bouchardon, The Genius of Summer, 1745 (Paris: Grenelle Fountain).
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In February, I noted the symposium; here’s the schedule:
Bouchardon and His Contemporaries
The Getty Center, Los Angeles, 2 April 2017
Organized in conjunction with the exhibition Bouchardon: Royal Artist of the Enlightenment (J. Paul Getty Museum, 10 January — 2 April 2017), this symposium explores the relationships that Bouchardon (1698–1762), an extraordinarily talented sculptor and draftsman, had with his contemporaries (artists, patrons, and connoisseurs). It also investigates the diffusion and reception of his oeuvre. Bouchardon’s career as a sculptor appears exceptional in several respects when compared to that of other artists active during the eighteenth century in France, England, or Italy. Atypically, most of his work (whether drawn, printed, modeled, cast, or carved) related to three-dimensional objects in a wide range of scales, from small gems to monumental sculpture, such as the Grenelle Fountain.
The human body was a constant subject of interest to Bouchardon. He explored its inner structure by conceiving and publishing a treatise on artistic anatomy, and he devised a very personal and elaborate aesthetic of the body that subtly blended his passion for antiquity and his commitment to the truthful depiction of nature. His experiments in the graphic arts and his interest in human expression also led him to make grotesque depictions of the human figure in the genre of caricature. Bouchardon’s masterpieces, especially those staged in public spaces, such as the Grenelle Fountain and the Equestrian Monument to Louis XV, had a critical impact on the artist’s contemporaries. In this regard, the reception and portrayal of these artworks through drawings and prints made by Gabriel de Saint-Aubin during the two decades that followed Bouchardon’s death are particularly enlightening.
P R O G R A M M E
10:00 Welcome by Thomas Gaehtgens (The Getty Research Institute)
10:05 Introductions: Anne-Lise Desmas (The J. Paul Getty Museum) and Édouard Kopp (Harvard Art Museums)
10:10 Morning Session
Moderator: Guilhem Scherf (Musée du Louvre)
• Malcolm Baker (University of California, Riverside), Some Ways of Carving out a Sculptural Career: Bouchardon, Roubiliac, Pigalle
• Anne-Lise Desmas, Bouchardon and Early Modern Sculptors in Rome
• Kristel Smentek (Massachusetts Institute of Technology), Bouchardon, P.-J. Mariette, and the ‘Pure Taste’ of the Antique
• Katie Scott (The Courtauld Institute of Art), Modelling Water: Bouchardon and the Fountain at the rue de Grenelle
2:30 Afternoon Session
Moderator: Juliette Trey (Musée du Louvre)
• Monique Kornell (University of California, Los Angeles), Bouchardon’s Unusual Anatomy Book for Artists: L’anatomie nécessaire pour l’usage du dessein  in Context
• Ewa Lajer-Burcharth (Harvard University), Bouchardon’s Body
• Édouard Kopp, Bouchardon, Caricature, and the Grotesque
• Perrin Stein (The Metropolitan Museum of Art), Activating Public Space: Bouchardon through the Eyes of Saint-Aubin
From the Paul Mellon Centre:
Sigrid de Jong, Dialogues across the Channel: British and French
Architects on Architectural Experience, 1750–1815
Paul Mellon Centre, London, 22 March 2017
The notion that buildings are foremost objects to be experienced and that the intended experience of buildings should guide their design became a key concept in the period 1750–1815. At that time, Paris and London, the main centres of cultural debates, went through major urban and architectural developments. In my research project, entitled “Experience and Design: The Emergence of Architectural Experience in Paris and London, 1750–1815,” I argue that architectural experience emerged there as a crucial new element. The project examines how the relationship between experience and design evolved: how eighteenth-century architects described their observations on buildings in their writings; which theoretical concepts they used to translate these into design theories for their lectures at the academies of architecture; and how they used them in their designs of buildings. This research seminar focuses on some of the dialogues of British and French architects across the Channel in the context of public architectural debates and on some key projects in eighteenth-century London and Paris that are exemplary for the interactions between experience and design. Wednesday, 22 March 2017, from 6:00 to 8:00pm. Registration information is available here.
Sigrid de Jong is an architectural historian at Leiden University, the Netherlands. Since 2016 she conducts a research project on “Experience and Design: The Emergence of Architectural Experience in Paris and London, 1750–1815,” funded by NWO (Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research). Her previous postdoctoral research was on primitivism and architectural theory in the NWO-VIDI project “The Quest for the Legitimacy of Architecture 1750–1850,” with Maarten Delbeke. She obtained her PhD in art and architectural history at Leiden University in 2010. Her book Rediscovering Architecture: Paestum in Eighteenth-Century Architectural Experience and Theory (based on her PhD thesis) was published by Yale University Press in 2014. Together with Caroline van Eck she is the editor of the Companion to Eighteenth-Century Architecture (series editor Harry Mallgrave, Wiley-Blackwell, to be published in 2017).
From the Paul Mellon Centre:
Isabelle Baudino, Samuel Wale’s Book Illustrations:
Designing Historical Panoramas in Georgian London
Paul Mellon Centre, London, 31 March 2017
Despite being a founding member of the Royal Academy of Arts, Samuel Wale (1721?–1786) has remained quite an elusive figure. Most of his easel paintings have disappeared and the greater part of his decorative works has been damaged or destroyed. Although he was apprenticed as an engraver, he started his career as a painter, attending classes at St Martin’s Lane Academy, decorating the Foundling Hospital and assisting Francis Hayman. While being consistently involved in the academic movement that led to the foundation of the Royal Academy, Wale also became one of the most prolific book illustrators of the day, designing hundreds of plates that contributed to the growing popularity of pictorial histories. Over the course of his forty-year career, he established a formulaic, full-page framed historical scene offering an unprecedented visualisation of British history. Indeed, building on his first selection of historical events, and drawing inspiration from the theatre, other books or paintings, Wale established a sequence of landmarks that gave an overview of Britain’s history from its ancient origins until modern times. He thus contributed to the visual perception of historical chronology and created images of national history that were emulated, adapted and appropriated. Friday, 31 March 2017, from 12:30 to 2:00pm. Registration information is available here.
I will argue that despite their low aesthetic and commercial value, the images that composed Wale’s historical panorama proved remarkably persistent because they brought together history, nationhood and iconography, thus transforming the understanding of history and fostering a new engagement with the past and its traces in the eighteenth-century present.
Isabelle Baudino is Senior Lecturer at the ENS in Lyons and has been a Visiting Fellow at Magdalene College, Cambridge, over the past academic year. Her work focuses on eighteenth-century British art with particular interest in history painting and the Royal Academy, taken individually, but also studied together in the context of the institutionalization of the arts in eighteenth-century Britain. Her study on Samuel Wale is part of a project which is generously supported by a mid-career fellowship from the Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art.
Of note for anyone in the Boston area next Tuesday; from Harvard:
David Pullins | The Shape of Painting: Eighteenth-Century Departures from the Rectangle
Harvard University, Cambridge, 7 March 2017
Informed by questions asked explicitly by twentieth-century painters (Johns, Stella, Murray) about the relationship between image and support, this talk engages with the wildly irregular formats produced in response to decorative programs in eighteenth-century France. While developing an historical understanding of the conditions that produced this pervasive (yet entirely unstudied) category of painting, the talk’s primary aim is to address what can be learned about the crises and limits of painting through this early modern departure from the rectangle. Tuesday, 7 March 2017, 5:00pm, Barker Center 133.
David Pullins is a Lecturer at MIT.
Image: Jacques de Lajoüe, Optics, ca. 1734 (private collection).
Available from Oakeley Books:
Alan Humphries, Henry Oakeley, and Victor Hoffbrand, English Delftware Apothecary Jars and Their Contents: The Victor Hoffbrand Collection (London: Oakley Books, 2017), ISBN: 978 0952 146131 (hardcover), £20 / ISBN: 978 0952 146148 (softcover), £12.
This collection of apothecary jars—used for storing medicines and their ingredients—comprises 183 items, dating from the 1640s to 1745. Collected by Professor Victor Hoffbrand, FRCP, it is the largest privately owned collection of English delftware apothecary jars in the United Kingdom. The fascination with English tin-glazed or delftware apothecary jars lies in their hand-painted designs and drug labels, in the composition and therapeutic uses of the drugs they contained, in the individual apothecaries who owned them, and in the potteries that manufactured them. The beauty of the jars’ designs may have helped to convince customers of the efficacy of their contents in treating and possibly curing diseases. For those interested in ceramics or the history of plant-based medicines, this sourcebook is complete with bibliographies, biographies, and glossaries of technical terms and materia medica.
Victor Hoffbrand is a professor of haematology. His collection of nearly 200 English delftware jars is now the second largest in the world and can be seen at the Royal College of Physicians in London.
Alan Humphries is a librarian at the Thackray Medical Museum in Leeds. He is responsible for the museum’s collections of over 10,000 books and 15,000 trade catalogues. To date he has located 2,419 English apothecary jars and has made their study his special interest.
Henry Oakeley is a garden fellow at the RCP. From contemporary pharmacopoeias, he has identified the 135 different medicines that the Hoffbrand apothecary jars contained and the plants (from Acorus to Zedoary), snakes, birds, and minerals that were used to manufacture those medicines.
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Book Launch: English Delftware Apothecary Jars
Royal College of Physicians, London, Thursday, 30 March 2017, 6:30–8:30
The evening begins with refreshments and a welcome by former RCP president Sir Richard Thompson. Short talks by Victor Hoffbrand, Alan Humphries, and Henry Oakeley will be followed by questions from the audience and a book signing. Copies of the book will be available to purchase (hardback £20, softback £12). Please RSVP to email@example.com by Friday, 24 March.
From the Women’s Studies Group website:
Annual Workshop of the Women’s Studies Group, 1558–1837
The Fruitful Body: Gender and Image
The Foundling Museum, London, 6 May 2017
The Women’s Studies Group, 1558–1837 annual workshop takes place every spring at The Foundling Museum in London. A distinguished invited speaker provides the keynote in the morning, followed by discussion and lunch; in the afternoon, participants each give a 5-minute presentation on a subject relevant to the theme of the keynote, followed by discussion. Previous speakers have included Jacqueline Labbe of the University of Sheffield and Laura Gowing of King’s College London. This year’s speaker is Karen Hearn of University College London, presenting “Women, Agency, and Fertility in Early Modern British Portraits.”
Cost (including lunch and refreshments): £18 (WSG members), £15 (students/unwaged), £22 (non-WSG members). To register, please complete the registration form available here. All attendees should bring a 5-minute presentation, from any discipline and any period covered by the Group, exploring the workshop theme. Topics might include
• conduct manuals
• women artists
Les femmes artistes au XVIIIe et XIXe siècles
Columbia Global Centers, Paris, 26 January 2017
Table-ronde animée par Anne Lafont (INHA/LEGS/CNRS) avec Charlotte Foucher-Zarmanian et Séverine Sofio
Deux monographies viennent de paraître sur la question des femmes artistes et/ou des artistes femmes dans les mondes de l’art français des XVIIIe, XIXe et XXe siècles. Écrits par deux historiennes de l’art et chercheuses au CNRS : Charlotte Foucher-Zarmanian et Séverine Sofio, ces livres, forts d’une historiographie artistique abondante et conflictuelle, reposent, de manière inédite et dans un débat en français, la question de l’histoire des femmes, des études de genre, des approches quantitatives, de l’interprétation des imaginaires, mais aussi du statut social et professionnel dans le milieu de l’art. Quels sont les jalons posés par ces deux ouvrages qui ouvrent à une nouvelle histoire de l’art travaillée par les études de genre ?
Jeudi, 26 Janvier 2017, 18h30
From the ECRS website:
Eighteenth-Century Research Seminars
Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities, Edinburgh, January–April 2017
The Eighteenth-Century Research Seminars (ECRS) series presents papers addressing varying aspects of eighteenth-century history, culture, literature, education, art, music, geography, religion, science, and philosophy. The series seeks to provide a regular inter-disciplinary forum for postgraduate and early-career researchers working on the eighteenth century to meet and discuss their research. Seminars will be held on a fortnightly basis on Wednesdays at the Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities, University of Edinburgh, from 4:30 to 6:00pm. Each will consist of two papers followed by a drinks reception. ECRS is supported by the Eighteenth-Century and Enlightenment Studies Network (ECENS) of the University of Edinburgh.
25 January 2017
• Ben Rogers (University of Edinburgh), ‘An Unexpected Solution or a Political Imposition?’: Scottish Episcopalian Toleration, 1702–12
• Carys Brown (University of Cambridge), ‘A Dissembling Harlot for a Leacherous Wolf’: Sexual Reputation and Religious Coexistence in England, c. 1689–1750
8 February 2017
• Nicola Martin (University of Stirling), Improvement, Stadial Theory, and the Pacification of the Highlands in the Mid-Eighteenth Century
• Thomas Archambaud (Independent), The Highland Bard and the Prime Minister: James Macpherson, Lord Bute, and the Politics of Scottish Patronage in the Age of Enlightenment
22 February 2017
• Sydney Ayers (University of Edinburgh), Representing Robert Adam: Biography, Portraiture, and Memory
• Nel Whiting (University of Dundee), ‘If They Hang Not in Proper Places, They Will Not Have a Good Effect’: Portraiture, Place, and Position
1 March 2017
• Elizabeth Ford (University of Glasgow), ‘I Can Think of Nothing But That Flute’: General John Reid (1721–1807)
• Alice Little (University of Oxford), Categorising ‘National Music’ in Eighteenth-Century Oxford
15 March 2017
• William Swain (University of Edinburgh), Adam Ferguson, Freidrich von Gentz, and the Decline of the Martial Spirit
• John Stone (Universitat de Barcelona), The Cultural Work of the Royal Scots College (Valladolid), 1770–1808: Cosmopolitanism, Diaspora, the ‘National Feeling’, and Library Formation
22 March 2017
• Catherine Ellis (Durham University), How To Understand the Sex Worker at the Table: Gastrocritical Approaches to Eighteenth-Century French Prostitution’
• Jessica Hamel-Akré (University of Montreal), ‘Oh, When Shall I Be Holy?: Reading and Writing Women’s Eighteenth-Century Self-Starvation
12 April 2017
• Hannah Lund (University of Edinburgh), Enthroned: The Sitter’s Chair of Sir Joshua Reynolds, 1760–1879
• Suchitra Choudhury (University of Glasgow), Fashion and Textiles: A Postcolonial Reading of Sir Walter Scott
26 April 2017
• Charlotte Bassett (University of Edinburgh), Lady Margaret Hamilton: Patroness of Hopetoun
• Amy Boyington (University of Cambridge), Elite Wives and Architecture in Eighteenth-Century Britain
Now on view at The Grolier Club:
‘A True Friend of the Cause’: Lafayette and the Antislavery Movement
The Grolier Club, New York, 7 December 2016 — 4 February 2017
Curated by Olga Anna Duhl and Diane Windham Shaw
Although the Marquis de Lafayette is popularly known as ‘America’s Favorite Fighting Frenchman’ in the current Broadway musical Hamilton, his role as an ardent abolitionist has not received the same kind of attention as his contributions to the American Revolution. The groundbreaking exhibition A True Friend of the Cause: Lafayette and the Antislavery Movement, on view at the Grolier Club from December 7, 2016 to February 4, 2017, is designed to offer a more comprehensive look at the man who was a ‘hero of two worlds’. While Lafayette’s contributions in the areas of politics, diplomacy, and the military have received renewed scholarly and public recognition, his abolitionist activities are not widely known, nor have they been adequately explored in any major exhibition or publication in the last twenty-five years. This exhibition brings into focus Lafayette’s sustained efforts in France, the United States, and South America on behalf of the abolition of slavery.
Co-curators Olga Anna Duhl, Oliver Edwin Williams Professor of Languages, and Diane Windham Shaw, Director of Special Collections and College Archivist, Skillman Library, Lafayette College, offer a comprehensive view of Lafayette’s activities. Drawn from Lafayette College’s rich collections of 18th- and 19th-century rare books, manuscripts, paintings, prints, and objects—some of which are on public view for the first time—the approximately 130 works in the exhibition also include loans from Cornell University and the New-York Historical Society.
The Marquis de Lafayette (1757–1834) fought in the American War of Independence; was a friend to the Native Americans; defended the rights of French Protestants and Jews during the French Revolution; supported the national emancipation movements of the people of Poland, Ireland, Italy, Greece, and South America; and promoted the ideas and causes of women. Most significantly, he remained throughout his life a fervent advocate of the abolition of slavery and the African slave trade, earning the recognition of prominent British abolitionist, Thomas Clarkson, as “a true friend of the cause.” Early on, Lafayette learned that the ideals of liberty and equality during the revolutionary era hardly benefited all members of society. In fact, one of the most daunting paradoxes of that era, which became a source of reflection and action for him, was the incompatibility between the national independence of the newly formed United States and the practice of slavery and slave trade.
The exhibition traces Lafayette’s first encounters with slaves on the South Carolina coast upon his arrival in America in 1777. Highlights of his role in service with the Continental Army are revealed in his letters to his mentor, George Washington, written from Valley Forge, Newport, and Virginia during the Yorktown Campaign, where Lafayette writes of the intelligence gathered by one of his spies, James, an enslaved African American. On view is a highly significant letter written by Lafayette to Washington requesting his partnership in a venture to free slaves. Stunning French prints of the American Revolution are included, as is an influential portrait, Lafayette at Yorktown, by Jean-Baptiste Le Paon.
The impact of abolitionist ideas on Lafayette is represented by the Marquis de Condorcet’s seminal work of 1781, Réflexions sur l’esclavage des nègres, and writings of British abolitionists Thomas Clarkson and Granville Sharp. Lafayette’s decision to move forward on his own by purchasing property in French Guiana to carry out his experiment in gradual emancipation is documented by an extraordinary group of documents on loan from the Cornell University Library. Included among them is a list of the enslaved who were selected to work on the property. Maps, prints, and early travel volumes recreate the image of this South American colony.
Lafayette’s complicated story during the French Revolution includes his membership in the French Society of the Friends of Blacks. Publications of the Society are on view, as are printed versions of landmark French documents— the Declaration of the Rights of Man (1789), the French Constitution (1791), and the decree abolishing slavery in the French colonies (1794). Lafayette’s hasty departure from France in 1792 to avoid the guillotine is documented by the beautiful sword that was taken from him when he was arrested and imprisoned by the Austrians, which stands as a symbol of his personal experience with captivity. Lafayette’s return to a quiet life in France in 1800 found him still passionately committed to the antislavery movement, rejoicing when England outlawed the slave trade in 1807. Commemorative volumes and prints celebrate that milestone.
Lafayette’s last visit to America in 1824–25 was an extravagant moment in the nation’s history. The exhibition includes some of the spectacular souvenirs that were made to commemorate his visit—china, textiles, and even a clothes brush with the bristles dyed to spell “Lafayette 1825.” Lafayette’s emphasis on greeting all Americans is highlighted, including his visit to the African Free School in New York City, where he received a welcome address by an eleven-year-old student. Calligraphed and delivered by the student himself, James McCune Smith, who went on to become one of America’s first black physicians and a noted abolitionist, this text is a loan from the New-York Historical Society Library. The Farewell Tour section also documents Lafayette’s friendship with fellow antislavery advocate, Frances Wright, and his support of her gradual emancipation project “Nashoba” near Memphis, Tennessee.
Also included are letters from James Madison, Thomas Jefferson, and John Marshall, and letters from Lafayette to Albert Gallatin, William H. Crawford, Joel Poincett, and others. Even after his death in 1834, his influence continued, particularly in America, where abolitionists, both black and white, continued to cite his example. Finally, the exhibit includes special items chosen to remind us of the human face of slavery—manumission papers of a woman and a man freed by their Quaker owners; the pension records of an African American Revolutionary soldier from Connecticut; and the first American printing of the Brooks engraving of slaves tightly packed on board a slave ship. Despite the changing fortunes and conflicting reviews of his career, Lafayette has remained a compelling figure in world history, and the interest in his contributions shows no sign of diminishing.
Lunchtime Guided Tours with the Curators
December 7 and 14, January 11 and 18, and February 1, 1–2pm
Roundtable Discussion: Lafayette and the Antislavery Movement
24 January 2017, 2–3:30pm
With co-curators and moderators Olga Anna Duhl and Diane Windham Shaw and featuring panelists Laura Auricchio (The New School), François Furstenberg (Johns Hopkins University), and John Stauffer (Harvard University). Reception to follow.
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The catalogue is available from Oak Knoll Press:
Olga Ann Duhl and Diane Windham Shaw, ‘A True Friend of the Cause’: Lafayette and the Antislavery Movement (New York: The Grolier Club and Lafayette College, 2016), 76 pages, ISBN: 978 160583 0650, $40.
From the seminar flyer:
Hannah Wirta Kinney | Commissioning Faithful Copies
of Antiquities in Eighteenth-Century Florence
The Wallace Collection, London, 31 October 2016
In Some Observations Made in Travelling through France, Italy, Etc Edward Wright concluded his account of the famous antiquities of the Tribuna of the Uffizi by describing bronze copies of its four most important statues, which were on display in the Duke of Marlborough’s Blenheim Palace. Visiting Florence in 1720, Wright had assisted the Lord Chancellor Thomas Parker to purchase bronze copies of the same famous antiquities. The casts’ maker, Pietro Cipriani, promised that they would “at least equal [Massimiliano Soldani Benzi’s for Marlborough], and be the most exact that ever were made.” In correspondence with their patrons, both sculptors suggested that the exactness of their copies resulted from the moulds they used to cast them, which had been taken directly from the original marble. But the authorization to make and thus acquire a faithful copy of a Medici-owned sculpture was carefully controlled. Permission to copy came from Tuscan Grand Duke Cosimo III himself. The mould thus became the material proof of the copy’s close relationship to the original, and therefore of the copy’s value. It was also, importantly, the meeting point between the interests of the artist, the commissioner, and the owner of the original.
During the age of the Grand Tour collectors desired copies of the renowned works in Italian collections, but the authorization to make a copy was carefully controlled by the original’s owner. A copy of a well-regarded original could be read not only as evidence that the purchaser was aesthetically discerning, but, further, that he had the diplomatic connections that would allow it to be made. Conversely, for Tuscan Grand Duke Cosimo III, the ritual of the request for a copy, like the praises of his statues that echoed in the halls of his galleries, reinforced his claims of political relevance in a moment of weakening power. This paper explores how ‘faithful’ copies materialized and displayed political relationships in the eighteenth century. The larger goal is to invert the standard narrative of the Grand Tour, to look at artistic production, rather than just at consumption, as a process of identity formation.
Seminars in the History of Collecting
Hannah Wirta Kinney (DPhil candidate, University of Oxford)
Commissioning Faithful Copies of Antiquities in Eighteenth-Century Florence
Monday, 31 October 2016, 5.30pm
Lecture Theatre, The Wallace Collection
Admission is free and booking is not required. More information and details of the seminar series can be found here.