Race and Architecture in the Iberian World, c. 1500-1800s

A special issue of Arts (ISSN 2076-0752).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 October 2023) | Viewed by 11933

Special Issue Editors


E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Associate Professor, Department of Visual Arts, Western University, London, ON N6A 3K7, Canada
Interests: Hispanic American art and architecture; early modern visual culture; race, gender, religious art and architecture
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Art, Design, and Art History, California State University, Fresno. 5225 N. Backer Avenue M/S CA65, Fresno, CA 93740, USA
Interests: early modern Iberian world; Spain; New Spain; art and architectural history; urban space; public works

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

In the field of art history, previous scholarship has addressed (and continues to address) the contribution of Indigenous, Black, Asian, and mixed-raced artists to the early modern visual culture in the Atlantic world. Frequently scholars are interested in documenting race and its enduring legacy through a variety of cultural artifacts such as paintings, sculptures, manuscripts, featherworks, metalwork, etc. However, much less attention has been given to architectural history, and particularly that of the early modern Iberian world.

Recently, Irene Cheng, Charles L. Davis II, and Mabel O. Wilson edited a ground-breaking volume titled Race and Modern Architecture (2020). Their publication provides an important collection of essays that discuss how the discipline of architectural history has been shaped by racial thought. Likewise, the Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians dedicated a short roundtable-style conversation on the subject of race and architecture in the 1400s through the 1800s (Carey, Dudley, Escobar, et. al. 2021). Each short paper considers the role of race in architecture and implores other scholars to investigate this understudied topic. This Special Issue of Arts is a response to this scholarly call to engagement. Specifically, we will explore the intersection of race, labor, and architectural history and their interconnectivity with the architecture and its accompanying artistic forms in the early modern Iberian world. We do so through considering how race and architecture are activated through construction projects, the building trades, the history of labor, and in plans, pictorial, and print representations, etc., in the vast territories (European, American, African, Asian) that comprised the Spanish and Portuguese empires.

We invite contributors to submit their research in English for consideration. Please note that there is a two-stage submission procedure. We will first collect a title and short abstract (maximum 250 words), 5 keywords, and a short bio (150 words), by December 15, 2022, via email to Dr. Cody Barteet ([email protected]) and Dr. Luis Gordo Peláez ([email protected]). Selected abstracts will be invited to submit 7000–9000-word papers for peer review by June 1, 2023. Journal publication is expected to occur from late spring through fall 2023, depending on the revision time needed after peer review. Each article will be published open access, on a rolling basis after successfully passing peer review.

Dr. Cody Barteet
Dr. Luis Gordo Peláez
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a double-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Arts is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1400 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • race
  • regionalism
  • architecture
  • patronage
  • labor
  • Iberian
  • early modern

Published Papers (6 papers)

Order results
Result details
Select all
Export citation of selected articles as:

Research

Jump to: Other

24 pages, 6424 KiB  
Article
Haunted Monasteries: Troubling Indigenous Erasure in Early Colonial Mexican Architecture
by Savannah Esquivel
Arts 2024, 13(2), 61; https://doi.org/10.3390/arts13020061 - 29 Mar 2024
Viewed by 1181
Abstract
This essay examines the placement and displacement of Nahua labor in the architectural history of Mexico’s early colonial monasteries. It takes as its point of departure the story of a ghost in the Tlaxcala monastery as told by a Franciscan missionary to analyze [...] Read more.
This essay examines the placement and displacement of Nahua labor in the architectural history of Mexico’s early colonial monasteries. It takes as its point of departure the story of a ghost in the Tlaxcala monastery as told by a Franciscan missionary to analyze the discursive and spatial dimensions of emergent racial ideologies in Mexico’s earliest Catholic missions. While the ghost’s appearance signals the eruption of unresolved tensions between the missionaries and the Tlaxcalans in a cohabited religious complex, the specter also animates settler colonial domination. Cross-referencing Nahuatl and Franciscan documents reveal the ghost story as a whitewashed tale of monastic ritual life wherein the ghost effaces Indigenous labor at precisely the moments and places missionaries deemed it most threatening. In so doing, this study illuminates how racial ideologies were structured discursively and experientially at the missions and contributes to urgent debates about how the history and preservation of Catholic architecture in Mexico conceals and represses the lived experience of Indigenous peoples. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Race and Architecture in the Iberian World, c. 1500-1800s)
Show Figures

Figure 1

21 pages, 2898 KiB  
Article
Spanishness and Race in North American Monumental Architecture
by Lauren Beck
Arts 2024, 13(2), 44; https://doi.org/10.3390/arts13020044 - 23 Feb 2024
Viewed by 1130
Abstract
The representation of Spain, and Spanishness in general, at sites of collective identity in the United States and Canada requires scholarly attention. Many monuments, which range from statues and museums to capitol buildings and national parks, continue to commemorate colonial times despite broader [...] Read more.
The representation of Spain, and Spanishness in general, at sites of collective identity in the United States and Canada requires scholarly attention. Many monuments, which range from statues and museums to capitol buildings and national parks, continue to commemorate colonial times despite broader public awareness of the association between colonization and racialized violence, as well as the explicit movement toward decolonization. This commemorative material also demonstrates how non-Spanish settlers have appropriated historical moorings of Spain and its colonial past to reinforce and whitewash their identities in places such as New Mexico and Texas, and even in Newfoundland and Labrador. How monuments are funded and gain public support is another vector that points to the ways that identity—particularly, white identity—informs monumental architecture in ways that exclude people of colour, as well as women, who, when featured in monuments, are usually dehumanized as concepts rather than being the actors of settler-colonialism. This article explores these challenging topics with the aim of articulating a roadmap for future scholarship on this subject. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Race and Architecture in the Iberian World, c. 1500-1800s)
Show Figures

Figure 1

25 pages, 11991 KiB  
Article
Race and Politics in Eighteenth-Century Mexico City: Architecture and Urbanism at the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe
by Juan Luis Burke
Arts 2023, 12(6), 250; https://doi.org/10.3390/arts12060250 - 11 Dec 2023
Viewed by 1822
Abstract
This article analyzes the urban and architectural transformations in the Villa de Guadalupe, the site where the cult of the Virgin of Guadalupe originated, in present-day Mexico City, on behalf of Creole architects, urban planners, and clerics. The article argues that members of [...] Read more.
This article analyzes the urban and architectural transformations in the Villa de Guadalupe, the site where the cult of the Virgin of Guadalupe originated, in present-day Mexico City, on behalf of Creole architects, urban planners, and clerics. The article argues that members of Mexico City’s Creole elite played a critical role in fabricating a fervent cult of a dark-skinned Madonna while orchestrating dramatic changes to the site of the apparitions, which transformed it from a humble Indigenous village into the religious and spiritual heart of New Spain. The essay focuses its attention on the town’s urban and architectural changes during the eighteenth century, which is when the village of Guadalupe was transformed into a veritable “villa”, a special designation for an urban establishment in the early modern Hispanic world, which vested it with certain legal autonomy. The story of the urban and architectural transformations and innovations at this site is fascinating, given the ambition on behalf of Mexico City’s Creoles to appropriate it and its success in promoting it as the source of Mexico City’s and New Spain’s claims to exceptionality by divine designation. The Virgin Mary’s appearances to a humble young Indigenous man in an impoverished Native village near Mexico City, which became the spiritual center of New Spain, became a potent narrative wielded by the Creole elite, as they sought to assert their political claims in the face of staunch opposition from Spanish-born administrators and clergy. At the Villa de Guadalupe, as this essay reveals, Creole elites tested their political, urban planning, and architectural skills, asserting their cultural and political relevance in 18th-century Mexico City. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Race and Architecture in the Iberian World, c. 1500-1800s)
Show Figures

Figure 1

15 pages, 6975 KiB  
Article
Housing the King’s Enslaved Workers in the Spanish Caribbean
by Pedro Luengo
Arts 2023, 12(6), 245; https://doi.org/10.3390/arts12060245 - 29 Nov 2023
Viewed by 1485
Abstract
The construction of military edifices in Spanish Caribbean was overseen by engineers, as previous studies have largely shown, but forced labor played a key role in the processes, an understudied aspect. Hundreds of enslaved workers in San Juan de Puerto Rico or San [...] Read more.
The construction of military edifices in Spanish Caribbean was overseen by engineers, as previous studies have largely shown, but forced labor played a key role in the processes, an understudied aspect. Hundreds of enslaved workers in San Juan de Puerto Rico or San Juan de Ulúa (Veracruz, Mexico) and thousands in Havana (Cuba) helped create the built environment of the Spanish empire in the eighteenth century yet both their significant physical presences and housing situations have not been discussed at large. Furthermore, general maintenance of these structures was one of the duties of military engineers serving in Spanish Caribbean and, thus, archival material should be rich in describing this aspect, yet very few plans or reports offer any information concerning enslaved workers’ habitations, apart from Havana’s galeras and some sections of San Juan de Ulúa, both unpublished until now. Recognizing that Spanish authorities paid little attention to the lodgings of their enslaved workers, this paper considers the forms of structures created by enslaved peoples for their lodgings. Through examples discussed in Havana and for San Juan de Ulúa, this study demonstrates that European architectural traditions were eschewed in favor of native and, likely, African customs. These examples offer unique insights into enslaved peoples’ living environments and expand our discussions into how race contributed to the diversity of architectural practices in the early modern Iberian world. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Race and Architecture in the Iberian World, c. 1500-1800s)
Show Figures

Figure 1

20 pages, 12409 KiB  
Article
Colonial Carpenters: Construction, Race, and Agency in the Viceroyalty of Peru during the 16th and 17th Centuries
by Francisco Mamani Fuentes
Arts 2023, 12(5), 218; https://doi.org/10.3390/arts12050218 - 18 Oct 2023
Viewed by 1889
Abstract
This article examines colonial documents to shed light on the presence of non-white carpenters in the carpentry trade during the first two centuries of Spanish colonial rule in Peru. It first offers a general definition of carpentry work during the sixteenth and seventeenth [...] Read more.
This article examines colonial documents to shed light on the presence of non-white carpenters in the carpentry trade during the first two centuries of Spanish colonial rule in Peru. It first offers a general definition of carpentry work during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries and then explores the specific environments in which Indigenous, black, and mixed-race carpenters carried out their activities. Through this analysis, it becomes evident that the agency of non-white individuals and groups in the carpentry trade was shaped by the diverse labor systems that predominated in colonial society. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Race and Architecture in the Iberian World, c. 1500-1800s)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Other

Jump to: Research

20 pages, 1731 KiB  
Essay
Aleijadinho’s Mestiço Architecture in Eighteenth-Century Brazil: Inventing Brazilian National Identity via a Racialized Colonial Art
by Laura Ammann
Arts 2023, 12(5), 214; https://doi.org/10.3390/arts12050214 - 10 Oct 2023
Viewed by 1646
Abstract
Antônio Francisco Lisboa (Aleijadinho) is arguably the most famous Brazilian colonial artist, known for his Baroque sculptures and architecture. The reception of his life and work, which often centered on biographical aspects such as his mestiço identity and his disability, conferred him a [...] Read more.
Antônio Francisco Lisboa (Aleijadinho) is arguably the most famous Brazilian colonial artist, known for his Baroque sculptures and architecture. The reception of his life and work, which often centered on biographical aspects such as his mestiço identity and his disability, conferred him a mythological positioning in Brazilian history. From the first sources from the 19th century to the modernist reappraisal of the Colonial Baroque in the 1920s, Aleijadinho became a foundational figure in the construction of Brazil’s post-colonial nationhood. This article contributes to the understanding of the mythification of Aleijadinho, paying special attention to how his mestiço identity was articulated in the essays of the Brazilian modernist Mário de Andrade. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Race and Architecture in the Iberian World, c. 1500-1800s)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Back to TopTop