Encounters in Medieval Wall Painting between the West and Byzantium: Appropriation, Exchange, and Mutual Perceptions
Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (21 June 2019) | Viewed by 23148
Interests: visual arts from antiquity to c. 1500; medieval artist; Byzantine art; Romanesque art; artistic transfer and mobility; patronage; pilgrimage; Mediterranean studies
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In the last few decades, the medieval Mediterranean has been the focus of a number of wide-ranging historical studies that emphasize its status as a privileged space for political, cultural, artistic, and commercial exchange between West and East. For art historians, this has opened up the possibility of looking beyond long-established artistic categories from the Early to Late Middle Ages, especially with regard to the relationship between Byzantium and the West. This has allowed them to test the boundaries of well-settled narratives of art in modern nation-states.
The immediate objects of our study are a series of wall paintings that derive from a very specific cultural and artistic encounter between the West and Byzantium from the 6th to 15th centuries. In every case, the precise nature of this agency and the different levels at which interchange operated should be defined. Sometimes, this entails the appropriation of a specific style or an iconographic topic for a use in a different context. The goal of this appropriation can take many forms, such as prestige, the fascination for the other or even the assumption of new identities. At other times, it is about the creation of pictorial hybrids to promote cultural fusion between Latins and Greeks. In most of these examples, either patrons or artists had to experience a process of shifting identities, in which the individual replicates in himself behaviors, tastes or skills of another (alien to his culture) in order to identify himself with the other.
Wall painting is a privilege field to explore these cross-cultural and artistic encounters between the West and Byzantium. Two periods seem to be especially permeable to this phenomenon: The Early-Byzantine period, in which Byzantium reached its highest expansion in the Western Mediterranean, and the last centuries of the Middle Ages, in which, conversely, the Latins occupied extensive portions of the Eastern Mediterranean, either with the Crusades or with the establishment of Latin states in Greece.
To propose a paper for publication, please send a title and short abstract to the Guest Editor, Manuel Castiñeiras, on [email protected], with copy to [email protected] by 5 February 2019. Full manuscripts of up to max 15,000 words in length should be submitted by 21 June 2019.
Dr. Manuel Castiñeiras
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- medieval wall painting
- Byzantine art
- cross-cultural studies
- medieval artist
- artistic hybridization