Kloster Irsee, Swabia, Germany, 24-27 May 2013
Organized by Sylvia Heudecker and Andrea Gáldy
Research in the history of collecting has often focused on collections of works of art and artefacts, even though the mediaeval and early modern kunst- and wunderkammern harboured both artificialia and naturalia from their very inception. In fact, some of the keenest collectors of art and antiquities, such as Cosimo I de’ Medici or the Saxon electors, were particularly renowned for their interest in the natural sciences, including geography, botany, and zoology. What started as a mass of curiosities – e.g. prepared animals, skeletons, minerals, and metal ore – soon was transformed into an insatiable quest for knowledge that was furthermore fanned by the age of exploration and the exploitation of far-away countries. Papers in this conference will focus on the intersection between the history of collecting and the history of science, while not forgetting the monastic or courtly context of provenance and display.
Irsee is a particularly interesting venue for in the eighteenth century Pater Eugen Dobler had set up a much admired bird cabinet. Although no trace of this cabinet remains, the room itself still exists and will be used for the conference’s academic sessions. International scholars will be presenting, the conference language is English.
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F R I D A Y , 2 4 M A Y 2 0 1 3
6.00 Evening reception plus short introduction to the conference
Susanne Formanek (Institut für Kultur- und Geistesgeschichte Asiens, Vienna), Collecting and Displaying Nature in Early Modern Japan
S A T U R D A Y 2 5 M A Y 2 0 1 3
9.00 Andrea Gáldy and Sylvia Heudecker, Welcome
‘Naturalia’ and ‘Sculpture’ after Nature
• Rachel King (Pinakothek und Nationalmuseum, Munich), Collecting Nature within Nature: Animal Inclusions in Amber in Early Modern Collections
• Lisa Skogh (Stockholms Universitet), Bergwerke and Handsteine in the Royal Swedish Collections, 1654–1720
10.30 Coffee / Tea
• Angelica Groom (The Open University, Milton Keynes), Animal Collecting at the Medici Court in Florence: Real, Stuffed and Painted Beasts as Evidence of Shifting Values in the Display and Conceptualisation of the Zoological ‘Other’
• Virginie Spenlé (Kunstkammer Georg Laue, Munich), Casting from Nature: Wenzel Jamnitzer’s Metal Works for
Kunst- and Wunderkammern
Nature and Naturalia Indoors
• Marcell Sebők (Central European University, Budapest), Wonders on the Walls: Visual Presentations and Displaying Nature and Knowledge in Early Modern Private Collections
• Giada Damen (Princeton University), Collecting and Cataloguing Art and Nature in a Venetian Palazzo
3.30 Coffee / Tea
• Ivo Raband (Universität Bern), An Archducal Collection in Brussels: Archduke Ernest of Austria and His Collecting Ambitions
• Shep Krech III (Brown University, Providence), Catesby’s Birds
S U N D A Y , 2 6 M A Y 2 0 1 3
9.00 Optional tour of Kloster Irsee
10.15 Optional Roman Catholic Mass
The Display of Naturalia: Libraries and Wunderkammern
• Barbara Tramelli (Max-Planck-Institut für Wissenschaftsgeschichte), Nature and Grotesques: Pirro Visconti Borromeo and the Collection in His Villa of Lainate
• Inga Elmqvist Söderlund (Museum of the History of Science, Oxford University), Scientific Instruments in the Ideal Early Modern Library
• Miriam H. Kirch (University of North Alabama, Florence), A Princely Plant Collector in Renaissance Germany
• Joy Kearney (Radboud Universiteit Nijmegen), Ornithology in the Dutch Golden Age: Captured Specimens and the Collecting of Exotica
• Iordan Avramov (Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, Sofia), The Correspondence of Henry Oldenburg and Circulation of Objects at the Early Royal Society of London, 1660–1677
• Anne Harbers (University of Sydney), Carl Linnaeus and the Natural History Collections of Lovisa Ulrika of Sweden at Drottningholm Palace
5.00 Coffee / Tea
5.30 Keynote Speech — Dornith Doherty (University of North Texas, Denton), Archiving Eden
M O N D A Y , 2 7 M A Y 2 0 1 3
Visit to the Südsee Museum, Obergünzburg and Kloster St Ottilien (Missions Museum) with lunch at the St Ottilien Biergarten
T U E S D A Y , 2 8 M A Y 2 0 1 3
Tour of the Museum of the Abbey Ottobeuren in the morning
With this posting on auction results, I would remind readers that we’re keeping up with past and upcoming auctions on HECAA’s Pinterest boards. -CH
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Press release from Heritage Auctions:
Rembrandt Peale’s iconic portrait of U.S. President George Washington — created in the artist’s lifelong quest to paint the most recognizable image of the ‘Father of the United States’ — realized a new world record for a porthole portrait by the artist when it sold for $662,500 to lead Heritage Auctions’ two-day, $4.5+ million American art events in Dallas. The May 10-11 events spanned American Indian art, Texas, Western and California Art and masterpieces of fine American art. The auction sold 88 percent by lot and 93 percent by value and pushed three artists’ records past $500,000.
Peale’s portrait of Washington was presented with his equally iconic portrait of Martha Washington, which reached $158,500. . . .
The full press release is available here»
Press release (14 May 2013) from The Frick Collection:
Mounted Vase, ca. 1786–88, Royal Manufactory of Sèvres, hard-paste
porcelain with gilt-bronze mounts attributed to Pierre-Philippe Thomire;
Horace Wood Brock Collection. Photo: Michael Bodycomb
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The Frick Collection announced the extended loan of several important decorative arts objects from Horace Wood Brock, one of America’s most remarkable collectors. Over the last three decades, he has assembled an enviable collection of French and English decorative arts dating from 1675 to 1820, as well as paintings and Old Master drawings. Dr. Brock has also been a generous lender of works of art, loaning objects to the J. Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles and the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, and now to the Frick. Five French clocks from his collection are featured in the current special exhibition Precision and Splendor: Clocks and Watches at The Frick Collection, which opened in the Portico Gallery in January and will remain on view until February 2014. In addition to Dr. Brock’s clocks, four important pieces of French eighteenth-century decorative arts from his private collection are now on view in the Frick’s permanent collection galleries, where they can be enjoyed by museum visitors for the next several years. They are a secrétaire by Royal cabinetmaker Jean-Henri Riesener, a longcase clock by Balthazar Lieutaud, and two rare Sèvres porcelain vases. The exhibition of clocks and watches as well as the placement of the four additional loans in the galleries has been coordinated by the Frick’s Associate Curator of Decorative Arts, Charlotte Vignon.
The impressive longcase regulator clock displayed in the East Vestibule near the museum’s Entrance Hall was made in Paris around 1750−55, when the fashion for rococo design was at its peak. A perfect example of this highly decorative style, the clock’s shape avoids straight lines in favor of a fanciful play of curves and counter-curves, adorned by heavy gilt-bronze mounts that call to mind the branches of a tree. Although the mounts take their inspiration from nature, they are not representational but rather a pure fantasy of the rococo style. The clock is topped by the winged figure of Time, made by an unknown craftsman. The figure holds a scythe in one hand and an hourglass in the other as reminders of man’s mortality. The case was made by Balthazar Lieutaud, who became a master cabinetmaker in 1749, only a few years before creating this piece. About a decade later, in 1767, he executed a longcase clock that was purchased by Henry Clay Frick in 1915 and is now displayed at the foot of the Grand Staircase. It was made in the newly fashionable neoclassical style, which evolved in response to the extravagance of the rococo. This later clock is crowned by a gilt-bronze group representing Apollo riding his chariot, made by the bronzemaker Philippe Caffiéri.
The exquisite soft-paste potpourri vase on view in the Fragonard Room was made by the Royal Manufactory of Sèvres around 1763–70. Its gilt-bronze mounts were added later, around 1785. The vase is topped by a finial composed of a cluster of berries nestled inside an acanthus-leaf cup. The support— which incorporates goats’ heads with elaborately curved horns—recalls the Athénienne, a type of pedestal table that was fashionable during the late eighteenth century in France and was loosely based on ancient models. The pierced metal band that separates the bowl of the vase from its cover suggests that it might have been designed to hold potpourri, a fragrant mixture of dried flowers and spices that perfumed the air of aristocratic residences during the eighteenth century. With its references to classical antiquity, it also could have been intended to evoke an incense burner, although it is unlikely that it would have been used in this way. The pendant to Dr. Brock’s vase is in the collection of Queen Elizabeth II.
A second vase made at the Royal Manufactory of Sèvres and lent by Dr. Brock is illustrated above. Between 1786 and 1788, the Sèvres manufactory produced a dozen round and oval vases in dark blue hard-paste porcelain that were fitted with gilt-bronze mounts attributed to the renowned bronzemaker Pierre Philippe Thomire. The oval version was commissioned in November of 1786 by Dominique Daguerre, the preeminent Parisian marchand-mercier (merchant of luxury goods) of the period, and thus was referred to in the factory’s records as a “vase Daguerre ovale.” The vase exemplifies the highly sophisticated luxury items produced in France on the eve of the revolution. The symmetry of the vase recalls ancient models, as do its gilt-bronze mounts, which are in the shape of acanthus and laurel leaves, pine cones, and palmettes.
The vase is displayed in the Boucher Room atop a secrétaire à abbatant, also from Dr. Brock’s collection. The French word secrétaire derives from secret, or secrecy. Such pieces were created to secure private documents. When opened, the fall-front panel provides a leather-covered writing surface and reveals twelve interior drawers of varying sizes and shapes. The lower part of the cabinet (concealed by two doors) provides extra storage, as does the large drawer above the fall-front panel. The desk was made around 1785 by Jean-Henri Riesener, who was appointed cabinetmaker to the king in 1774, the year Louis XVI acceded to the throne. In 1784, when the crown was attempting to reduce its expenditures, Riesener was replaced by a younger (and less expensive) cabinetmaker. Around this time his style changed, shifting away from furniture decorated with marquetry in colorful, exotic woods to veneered mahogany as seen in this secrétaire. Although this change was probably motivated by an effort to eliminate the labor-intensive marquetry work, it also reflected the new taste for simpler furniture that had been inspired by English models. Dr. Brock’s secrétaire epitomizes Riesener’s latest style. The splendid yet sober mahogany veneer panels are adorned with gilt-bronze mounts inspired by classical architecture: a frieze of scrolled acanthus leaves decorates the large drawer above the fall-front panel while a less ornate frieze of smaller acanthus leaves frames the desk’s side and front panels. The result is an elegant, perfectly symmetrical, and harmonious piece of furniture. (more…)
Recently added to caa.reviews:
Juliet Carey, with essays by Pauline Prévost-Marcilhacy, Pierre Rosenberg and Katie Scott, Taking Time: “Chardin’s Boy Building a House of Cards” and Other Paintings (London: Paul Holberton Publishing, 2012), 160 pages, ISBN: 978-1907372339, £30.
Reviewed by Paula Rea Radisich, Department of Art and Art History, Whittier College; posted 16 May 2013.
‘Taking Time: Chardin’s “Boy Building a House of Cards” and Other Paintings’ is the catalogue accompanying an exhibition mounted at Waddesdon Manor, the country house in Buckinghamshire, England, built in the nineteenth century for Baron Ferdinand de Rothschild. Today the manor is run jointly by the National Trust and a charitable Rothschild Family Trust headed by Jacob Rothschild, 4th Lord Rothschild. In 2007, the trust purchased Jean-Siméon Chardin’s ‘Boy Building a House of Cards’ (1735). ‘Taking Time’ celebrates the arrival of Chardin’s painting to Waddesdon Manor, where it joins another famous genre painting by Chardin, ‘Girl with a Shuttlecock’ (1737), on loan from the Rothschild Collection, Paris.
As Lord Rothschild notes in his foreword to the catalogue, this is the first time Waddesdon has organized an exhibition consisting of loans from other countries. The curatorial premise of the show was to display the Waddesdon ‘House of Cards’ with Chardin’s other versions of the same subject belonging to the Louvre, the National Gallery in London, and the National Gallery of Art in Washington, DC. . . .
The full review is available here» (CAA membership required)
The editors of Eighteenth-Century Fiction are interested in publishing occasional ‘image essays’ and welcome proposals. These pieces are often shorter than the average ECF research article, with some latitude for essay-like musings. Image essays complement the expanded mandate of Eighteenth-Century Fiction, which includes various media and cultural studies and provides ECF readers with examples of the editors’ very broad definition of ‘fiction’. Ideas and proposals can be submitted to email@example.com.
Examples of past ECF image essays can be found here:
• Frank Felsenstein, “Unravelling Ann Mills: Some Notes on Gender Construction and Naval Heroism,” Eighteenth-Century Fiction 19.1 (2006), here»
• Maximillian E. Novak, “The Cave and the Grotto: Realist Form and Robinson Crusoe’s Imagined Interiors” Eighteenth-Century Fiction 20.3 (2008). here»
• and most of the recent special issue, Gestes admirables, ou la culture visuelle de l’imprimé, Eighteenth-Century Fiction 23.4 (2011).
From the Freie Universität Berlin:
The Itineraries of Art Topographies of Artistic Mobility in Europe and Asia, 1500-1900
Museen Dahlem and Freie Universität, Berlin 23-25 May 2013
Annual conference of the DFG Research Unit 1703 Transcultural Negotiations in the Ambits of Art: Comparative Perspectives on Historical Contexts and Contemporary Constellations. Organized by Project Area B Transgressive Itineraries and Transcultural Aesthetics of Artistic Exchange in cooperation with the DFG Research Project Landscape, Canon and Intermediality in Chinese Painting of the 1930s and 1940s.
The conference discusses the interaction between routes as channels of communication and as modes of artistic experience in Europe and Asia. While recent scholarship has devoted attention to the economic and political historiographies of road-systems, this conference will focus on routes as stimuli of cultural transfer and artistic production. Addressing interactive overland and maritime networks as itineraries of contact and catalysts of artistic exchange will underscore the cultural agency of routes and interconnections. Framed in the historiography of longue durée, routes may be addressed as trajectories that cut across culturally determined geographies and periodizations. The conference concentrates on the sixteenth through nineteenth centuries and thereby foregrounds a period characterized by the unprecedented expansion and transformation of pre-existent route-networks. In the wake of the first global circumnavigation in 1522, the connection of overland-roads and maritime routes triggered new dynamics of transcontinental entanglements.
The conference aims at parallel perspectives on both Western Europe and East Asia, geographical regions that imagined each other as ›natural‹ terminus points of the ancient Eurasian trade networks. Consequently, new combinations of transcontinental telluric and nautical routes profoundly affected such predominant cultural topographies and symbolic paradigms. The rise of Asian and European port cities as nodes of maritime systems and prosperous cultural contact zones, often at the expense of inland metropoles, bespeaks this fundamental shift. By the end of the nineteenth century this process entered its end-stages; it is hardly coincidental that in this period, marked by colonialism and nationalism, some of the most enduring narratives of pre-modern routes evolved. To relate the proliferation of routes in the Early Modern era to art and artistic practices is also to engage with not only the actual translocation of persons, animals and objects, but with protocols and mechanisms of control and constraint. Furthermore, it is crucial to pose the question of how the visual arts in diverse historical and cultural contexts contributed to the fabrication of collective imaginations about routes past and present, as well as long-distance journeys. Parallel enquiries of practices and tropes of artistic mobility in Western Europe and East Asia enable the reconsideration of previously separate research in the agency of routes pursued at the intersection of the histories of art, cross-cultural transfer and entanglement.
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T H U R S D A Y , 2 3 M A Y 2 0 1 3
18:00 Gregor Stemmrich (Berlin), Opening
18:15 Karin Gludovatz (Berlin), Joachim Rees (Berlin), Introduction
18:30 Christian Kravagna (Vienna), When Routes Entered Culture: Histories and Politics of Transcultural Thinking
F R I D A Y , 2 4 M A Y 2 0 1 3
9:30 Klaas Ruitenbeek (Museum für Asiatische Kunst, SMB), Welcome Remarks
Art/Histories of Routes – A Transcultural Paradigm?
9:45 Joachim Rees (Berlin), Introduction
10:00 Monica Juneja (Heidelberg), Tracking the Routes of Vision in Early Modern Eurasia
11:00 Michael North (Greifswald), Tracking European and Chinese Objects of Art in the Indian Ocean, 17th
and 18th Centuries
12:00 Lunch Break
13:30 Eugene Wang (Cambridge, MA), Why was there no Chinese Painting of Marco Polo? The Limits of
Itinerancy-Themed Art Historical Inquiry
14:30 Melanie Trede (Heidelberg), Sea Routes to the Mainland: Identity Politics and the Formation of a Cultural Memory in Japanese Pictorial Narratives
15:30 Coffee Break
Symbolic Itineraries and Topographies – Framing Roads and Routes
16:00 Juliane Noth (Berlin), Introduction
16:15 Evelyn Reitz (Berlin), Transcultural Ballast. Netherlandish Tiles as Vehicles of Exchange
17:15 Sophie Annette Kranen (Berlin), The Historicity of the Route in the Atlas of James Cook’s Third Voyage
S A T U R D A Y , 2 5 M A Y 2 0 1 3
10:00 Elizabeth J. Kindall (St. Paul), Geo-Narrative in Seventeenth-Century China
11:00 Julia Orell (Zürich), The River as Personal Itinerary and Painting Lineage: Ten Thousand Miles along the Yangzi in Late Ming and Early Qing China
12:00 Lunch Break
Crossroads, Hubs and Centers – Art Forms of Interaction
13:30 Evelyn Reitz (Berlin), Introduction
13:45 Jessica Stewart (Munich), Accommodating Exotica, Incorporating Strangers: Displacement, Domestication and the Antwerp Market
14:45 Joachim Rees (Berlin), Nora Usanov-Geißler (Berlin), Harboring Expectations: The Littoral as Contact Zone in the Visual Arts of Japan and the Netherlands, ca. 1570-1630
15:45 Coffee Break
16:15 Yu-Chih Lai (Taipei), Court and Cultural Exchanges: A Study of the Album of Birds Produced at the Qing Qianlong Court
17:15 Ulrike Boskamp (Berlin), Art, Topography and Identity in a Military Hub: Representing the Portsmouth Area in the Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars
The Lewis Walpole Library is delighted to announce the recipients of fellowship and travel grant awards for the 2013-2014 academic year.
Lewis Walpole Library-ASECS Fellows
Kevin Bourque (Southwestern University), Seriality, Singularity, and Celebrity: Pictures in Motion from 1680 to 1810
Wolfgang Brückle (Inst. für Kunstgeschichte, Zurich), Displays for Medieval Art in Eighteenth-Century Collections: Twickenham and Beyond
Huw Davies (King’s College London), The Rise of British Military Power, 1750–1850
Eoin Devlin (University of Cambridge,) Anglo-European Sociability, Diplomacy, and Cultural Exchange, c. 1680–1770
Carlos Fernández Pérez (Museo Nacional de Bellas Artas, La Habana, Cuba), Learning British Art through Multimedia
Amanda E. Herbert (Christopher Newport University), Spa: Faith, Health, and Politics in Early-Modern Britain
Roger W. Eddy Fellow
Michael Printy (Wesleyan University), Hogarth’s German Enlightenment
Charles J. Cole Fellow
Thierry Rigogne (Fordham University), Café Culture and the Birth of Modernity: The French Coffeehouse in History, 1660–1800
George B. Cooper Fellows
Matthew Risling (University of Toronto), Burlesque Natural Philosophers: Negative Representations of Science and Scientists in the Eighteenth Century
Amy Torbert (University of Delaware), Going Places: The Material and Imaginary Geographies of Prints in the Atlantic World, 1770–1840
Cynthia Wall (University of Virginia), The Impress of the Invisible
Claude Willan (Stanford University), Hostile Takeover: The Tory Seizure of Eighteenth-Century Literary History
Anne Wohlcke (California State Polytechnic University, Pomona), Musical Work and Commemoration in the Eighteenth-Century British World
Travel Grant Recipients
Paul Davis (Princeton University), Making Peace with the Past: British Historical Culture, 1730–1776
Taylor Spence (Monash University), The Transplantation of the Culture of the Commons into the Eighteenth-Century Colonies from Great Britain
Fifth Early Modern Symposium
Work in Progress: Bringing Art into Being in the Early Modern Period
The Courtauld Institute of Art, London, 26 October 2013
Organised by Anya Matthews and Giulia Martina Weston
Proposals due by 21 June 2013
Complex narratives spanning months, years or even decades exist behind the single bracketed date attached to artworks to indicate their moment of execution or completion. This one-day symposium will explore the ‘ante-natal’ development of early modern art from its conception to its ‘quickening’ and eventual birth. The process fascinated contemporary theorists and continues to raise questions for modern art historians. For example, when was an artistic project considered finished or unfinished? What terms were used to indicate the various stages of bringing an artwork into being, and what implications did these terms have for authorship and authenticity? The creation of art is not the work of a moment or achieved at a single stroke; it involves a series of transpositions from idea to study or plan, from sketch to painting, from plan to building and so on. How did early modern art reflect on the process of its own making?
We invite 20-minute papers considering artistic ‘work in progress’ in the early modern period (c.1550-1800): (more…)
From Yale UP:
Carolyn J. Weekley, Painters and Paintings in the Early American South (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2013), 448 pages, ISBN: 978-0300190762, $75.
This beautifully illustrated volume presents the complex ways in which the lives of artists, clients, and sitters were interconnected in the early American South. During this period, paintings included not only portraits, but also seascapes, landscapes, and pictures made by explorers and naturalists.
The first comprehensive study of this subject, Painters and Paintings in the Early American South draws upon materials including diaries, correspondence, and newspapers in order to explore the stylistic trends of the period and the lives of the sitters, as gentility spread from the wealthiest southerners to the middle class. Featuring works by John Singleton Copley, Charles Willson Peale, and Benjamin West, among many others, this important book examines the training and status of painters, the distinction between fine art and the mechanical arts, the popularity of portraiture, and the nature of clientele between 1540 and 1790, providing a new, critical understanding of the history of art in the American South.
Carolyn J. Weekley is Juli Grainger Curator at the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation. She is co-author of Treasures of American Folk Art: From the Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Center and The Kingdoms of Edward Hicks.
Press release from Boston’s MFA:
Two 18th-century period rooms from Great Britain have been reinstalled at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, as part of a suite of galleries. The Alan and Simone Hartman Galleries comprise the Newland House Drawing Room, Hamilton Palace Dining Room, and British Art 1560–1830. They showcase nearly every facet of British art—paintings, furniture, silver, ceramics, and works on paper—including the Alan and Simone Hartman Collection of English silver, with superb examples made in London by Huguenot craftsmen between 1680 and 1760. The drawing room from Newland House, a manor house in Gloucestershire, England, was acquired by the MFA in 1931 and was last on view at the Museum in the 1970s. The dining room from Hamilton Palace, the vast residence of the Dukes of Hamilton just outside of Glasgow, Scotland, was acquired by the MFA in 1924. It was installed in 1928, but was dismantled during the past decade due to the construction of the adjacent Art of the Americas Wing, which debuted in November 2010. The three adjacent Hartman Galleries are located on Level 2 of the Museum’s Art of Europe wing. Concurrent to their opening, the MFA has unveiled its new Art of the Netherlands in the 17th Century Gallery (the renovation of this gallery was made possible by Rose-Marie and Eijk van Otterloo) and the renovated Leo and Phyllis Beranek Gallery, which together showcase more than 100 works. (more…)