Registrations now open for Symspoium – The Emotions of Love in the Art of Late Medieval and Early Modern Europe

REGISTRATIONS NOW OPEN!– Upcoming symposium presented by The Centre for the History of Emotions at the University of Melbourne and the National Gallery of Victoria

Sebald Beham, Venus (1539), from The Seven Planets series (1539). National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, Felton Bequest, 1923. Accession number: 1278.582-3.

Date: Thursday 4 May – Saturday 6 May 2017
Venue: Thursday and Friday – University of Melbourne, Woodward Conference Centre, 10th floor, Melbourne Law (Building 106), 185 Pelham Street, Carlton
Venue: Saturday – The National Gallery of Victoria, Clemenger Auditorium, 180 St Kilda Road, Melbourne
Convenors: Charles Zika and Angela Hesson
Contact: Julie Davies (
Costs: Full Reg 3 days: Full $80, Students and unwaged $50
Daily Registration
Day one: Full $30, Students and unwaged $20
Day two: Full $30, Students and unwaged $20
Day three (at NGV): Full $40, Students and unwaged $25
Conference Dinner
Full $80, Students and unwaged $45. The Conference dinner will be held at the Carlton Wine Room on Thursday evening.
Please register by 2 May for catering purposes. Unfortunately, registrations will not be available at the venue.
Love in Late Medieval and Early Modern Europe was a complex emotion, a constellation of feelings shaped and reflected by artists, writers and thinkers that sought to give expression to human experience and also provide models for individual and group behaviour. Notions of love took different forms and involved a range of emotions across time and space, under the influence of changing community norms, cultural practices, political institutions and social media.

This symposium coincides with the exhibition Love: Art of Emotion 1400–1800 at the National Gallery of Victoria, 31 March–18 June, 2017, which draws on the NGV’s permanent collection of European art. The accompanying symposium will engage with and extend the themes presented in the exhibition primarily through visual art, but also through literature and music. It will explore how artists expressed and aroused feelings of love through gesture and facial expression, colour and shape, the context of place and narrative, the representation of bodies, and references to contemporary rituals and practices. It will examine the ways different forms of love, including affection, friendship, intimacy, erotic desire, jealousy and compassion were applied to various objects of love – such as family and kin, the divinity and saints, fatherlands and the self. It will consider how these representations created new understandings of love, which in turn influenced developments in the religious, political, cultural and domestic spheres.

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