Tag: Seminar

Seminar | Cabinet Secrets – Martha Pollak | University of Melbourne

This seminar, presented by Professor Martha Pollak, explores cabinets like those once owned by the diarist, ecologist, and wannabe urbanist John Evelyn in the context of the secretive inclinations of the mid-seventeenth century, and with the search for meaning in objects and nature. When the Victoria and Albert Museum recently reopened its early modern galleries of decorative arts, among the large objects stood John Evelyn’s imposing cabinet made of pietre dure and ebony (W24-1977). Its inclusion in the “European” rather than English galleries signified the position of the much-quoted diarist, ecologist, and wannabe urbanist as an influential traveller to the continent. This sizeable and costly piece of show furniture was not, however, the only such item that Evelyn had brought back in his clobber from the continent. A much more modest museum in London, the Geffrye (styled as the Museum of…

Seminar | Garin Nugroho’s Satan Jawa: Remediating Art and History in Contemporary Indonesian film

Thursday 23rd February 5:30 pm – 7:30 pm From January to April, Asia TOPA: Asia-Pacific Triennal of Performing Arts will be held in Melbourne, an artistic celebration of Australia’s relations with contemporary Asia. One of the main goals of Asia TOPA is to foster cultural understanding between Australia and Indonesia (see https://www.asiatopa.com.au/about). One of the highlights of Asia TOPA is the film Satan Jawa by award-winning Indonesian filmmaker Garin Nugroho, a black and white film accompanied by live gamelan music. Satan Jawa was inspired by the German black and white silent cinema tradition, such as Nosferatu, as well as wayang kulit, the Indonesian shadow puppet theatre. Satan Jawa is an interdisciplinary production, merging filmmaking, music, dance, theatre, fashion and visual arts. Themes such as colonialism, magic realism, mysticism, mythology, and sensuality are set in a historical context. This panel discussion…

Deakin University Cultural Heritage Seminar | Sybille Frank ‘Negotiating the German Colonial Past in Berlin’s African Quarter’

Negotiating the German Colonial Past in Berlin’s African Quarter | Sybille Frank (Technische Universtät Berlin and Alfred Deakin Institute Citizenship and Globalisation Visiting Scholar) This presentation will introduce the ongoing dispute over street names in Berlin’s Afrikanisches Viertel (African Quarter). In 1899, Berlin named two of its newly-built streets “Togo Street” and “Cameroon Street”. Togo and Cameroon had been proclaimed the first German colonies in 1884. By 1958, 22 Berlin streets had been named after African regions that had been colonized by the German Empire, or after German colonial protagonists. In 2004, several NGOs called for a renaming of some of these streets, igniting a fierce dispute over the heritage status of the German colonial past. Drawing on guided interviews and document analyses, the seminar will delineate how ‘insider’ and ‘outsider’ positions have been allocated in the debate over street names…

Melbourne Portrait Group Seminar | Dr Vivien Gaston | Double Identity: William Orpen’s portrait of George C. Beresford (c. 1900)

The Melbourne Portrait Group Seminar is starting up again for 2015. The first paper will be given by Dr Vivien Gaston on ‘Double Identity: William Orpen’s portrait of George C. Beresford (c. 1900) in the National Gallery of Victoria’. Date: Thursday 30 April 2015, 6:45pm. Venue: University of Melbourne, Baillieu Library, Dulcie Hollyock Room. Website: http://melbourneportraitgroup.wordpress.com

Seminar | A New Document for Ghiberti at Santa Maria Novella in Florence | Hugh Hudson

A New Document for Ghiberti at Santa Maria Novella in Florence: The Confraternity of St Peter Martyr between Convent and Commune | Dr Hugh Hudson, University of Melbourne An unpublished reference in a book of the Confraternity of St Peter Martyr in the Archivio di Stato di Firenze shows that Lorenzo Ghiberti was among a group of 27 Florentine citizens who met in early 1414, of whom four were elected captains for the year. This raises a number of questions about confraternal practices in early Renaissance Florence. Did one have to be a member of a confraternity to elect, or be elected as, its captain? How much did the organisation of more convent-supported confraternities differ from more lay, or independent, confraternities? Through reference to published confraternal statutes, as well as unpublished archival records, the paper will take this new Ghiberti…

Seminar | Zoffany’s portrait of Elizabeth Farren – Vivien Gaston | Melbourne Portrait Group

Melbourne Portrait Group Seminar: ‘Portraits and Reanimation: Johann Zoffany’s Portrait of Elizabeth Farren as Hermione in Shakespeare’s ‘A Winter’s Tale’, c. 1780‘ Johan Zoffany’s portrait of Elizabeth Farren as Hermione in Shakespeare’s ‘A Winter’s Tale’ represents one of the most striking, controversial and memorable scenes in all of Shakespeare’s plays. It is also a portrait of an actress whose private and public lives were equally intriguing, one of a few highly successful women whose celebrity status enabled their radical upward mobility. As a portrait, which creates the illusion that its subject, Elizabeth Farren, is before us, this life-size depiction provides a new interpretation on Shakespeare’s theme of the relationship of art and life. It adds further power to the theatrical moment when Hermione ‘comes to life’, with its reverberations both magical and humane. Through a range of visual and textual…

Melbourne Portrait Group Seminar Series | Ted Gott on Augustus John

Next week, the Melbourne Portrait Group launches a series of seminars on various aspects of portraiture. The series opens with a paper from Ted Gott, Senior Curator of International Art at the National Gallery of Victoria, and further seminars are scheduled over the coming months. Monday 24 March, 6:30pm Ted Gott, Portraits of Augustus John in the National Gallery of Victoria. In 1939 the Director of the National Gallery of Victoria, J. S. MacDonald, wrote forcefully about Augustus John’s life-size 1909 portrait of the Lord Mayor of Liverpool: ‘the painting is a bad one, and its purchase should not be entertained’. Nonetheless, the painting was subsequently purchased for the NGV by the Felton Bequests’ Committee. Why was opinion divided about the merit of John’s painting, and how did a work that would seem to be a natural fit for a…

Call for Applications | Graduate Seminar in British Print Culture in a Transnational Context, 1700-2014

British Print Culture in a Transnational Context, 1700-2014 Graduate Summer Seminar, 21 – 25 July 2014, The Paul Mellon Centre for British Art, 16 Bedford Square, London In July 2014, the Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art will offer a week-long graduate student seminar focusing on British print culture. This is open to doctoral candidates who are working on related topics, or whose research would benefit from a deeper knowledge of the subject. There is a substantial body of literature on British prints that takes the form of survey publications, monographic studies of individual printmakers, and studies of individual techniques, and a number of scholars and doctoral students are currently undertaking research related to these topics. However, the broad field of British print culture still remains relatively underexplored, and its importance for those working in other areas of…

EVCS | Angelo Lo Conte, ‘Landscapes & Garlands of Flowers: an example of naturalistic Lombard devotion’.

Angelo Lo Conte Landscapes & Garlands of Flowers: an example of naturalistic Lombard devotion. This paper explores the invention and the development of the garland of flowers in European art, characterizing it as an example of mutual synergy between Italian philosophy and Flemish art. During the second half of the sixteenth century, Christian philosophy was strongly influenced by figures such as Filippo Neri, Agostino Valier and Federico Borromeo, who introduced a second wave of Counter-Reformational thought based on an innovative, optimistic idea of the world and of mankind’s role in it. According to this interpretation, all created things, animate and inanimate, had a positive value. Nature was thus seen as a manifestation of God’s goodness, and contemplation of nature became a way to establish a spiritual connection with God. Federico Borromeo, Archbishop of Milan, explored this philosophical approach in the…

EVCS | Felicity Harley-McGowan ‘Being Blunt: The art history ‘revolution’ in 1940s London′

  Felicity Harley-McGowan ‘Being Blunt’: The art history ‘revolution’ in 1940s London In 1940, London was home to a thriving network of scholarly activity in the discipline of art history. Three books published in that year have been seen within their own fields of research to epitomise the radical transformation of the discipline in the English-speaking world across the 1930s and 1940s. Concerning aspects of classical, medieval and Renaissance art and intellectual culture, each was published by a leading institution (The Courtauld Institute, British Museum, and The Warburg Institute), and authored by now-celebrated scholars (Anthony Blunt, Ernst Kitzinger, and Jean Seznec). This paper will examine aspects of the innovative pedagogical and research ideas epitomised by the books collectively; and with reference to the current state of the discipline, will reflect on the ways in which each was a catalyst for…

EVCS | Anne McComish ‘Myths and Reality: Mosaics from the Vatican Studio, 1900-32’

Anne McComish Myths and Reality: Mosaics from the Vatican Studio, 1900-32 The Vatican Mosaic Studio has been producing mosaic artworks of the highest quality since 1727. Some of its finest works take pride of place in the decorative-arts collections of the world’s major galleries, while others are regularly offered for sale by the world’s leading auction houses. Naturally, the finest works are the most valuable, and it is frequently also assumed that the finest works are necessarily the oldest. However, are all of the works on display or offered for sale as old as their gallery labels or sales catalogues suggest? And how many of them are from the Vatican Mosaic Studio at all? Attribution and dating are among the most challenging tasks for any art historian but in the case of mosaics from the Vatican Mosaic Studio the task…

Seminar | ‘Space, Memory, Narrative: The Oratorians and the Memorialization of San Filippo Neri in Rome, Florence and Naples’ Glenys L. Adams

Space, Memory, Narrative: The Oratorians and the Memorialization of San Filippo Neri in Rome, Florence and Naples Glenys L. Adams, University of Melbourne PhD Completion Seminar, Art History, School of Culture and Communication The Rooms of San Filippo Neri at the Roman Oratory in the church of Santa Maria in Vallicella (Chiesa Nuova) Rome were reconstructed between 1635 and 1643. This thesis is an examination of these rooms and argues that the relationship established between the architecture of the spaces, framed in relation to the carefully positioned relics, objects and paintings on display in these rooms, served an important means of legitimizing Filippo Neri’s mysticism and the creation of an Oratorian narrative that became the model for how the memory and cult of Filippo Neri was authenticated beyond the Roman Oratory. Date: 1-2pm, Wednesday 10 April, 2013 Date: Visual Cultures Resource Centre,…

Seminar | Roman Graffiti and the Evidence For the Depiction of Crucifixion in Late Antiquity, Felicity Harley-McGowan

The infamous ‘Alexamenos’ graffito, depicting a young man saluting a donkey-headed figure tied to a cross, is often treated as the earliest representation of a crucified figure in antiquity. Excavated on the Palatine hill in Rome, it is usually dated to the early third century CE. This paper will discuss a second piece of evidence that may pre-date the Palatine image by roughly a century: a graffito excavated in Puteoli, Italy, which depicts a human figure tied to a cross.

Seminar | ‘Magical Transparencies: Seeing the Divine in Glass’ Peter French

Magical Transparencies: Seeing the Divine in Glass Peter French This seminar examines key elements of the religious iconography of Australian contemporary glass artist, David Wright (b.1948). Following a brief introduction to the artist and the context in which the artist is working, especially concerning Australian religiosity in the latter part of the twentieth century, this seminar will use the artist’s representations of the three persons of the Trinity as a focal point for a deeper understanding of the artist’s iconographies and the influences behind such images. The Australian nature of such iconography will also be considered and the role of artist as visual exegete. David Wright was awarded an Order of Australia on Australia Day, 2013, for ‘services to the visual arts in the medium of stained glass.’ Peter French is a PhD candidate in the Art History Program, School…

Seminar | The Contexts of Early Christian Art: Basilicas, Space and Roma Christiana, 312-384 CE Lachlan Turnbull

The Contexts of Early Christian Art: Basilicas, Space and Roma Christiana, 312-384 CE Lachlan Turnbull | University of Melbourne (PhD Completion Seminar) Date: Wednesday 1 August |  1-2 pm Venue:  Old Physics G16 (Jim Potter room) The study of the art seen, used and commissioned by Christians in Rome during the fourth century poses complex and subtle problems. In the period 312 to 384 ce new iconographic themes emerged and novel spatial contexts were defined, contributing to the making of an identifiably Christian visual culture. My thesis suggests an approach to understanding the emergence of Christian art at Rome based upon methodological concerns for topography and space. As demonstrated by three key sites, new audiences for, themes in, and the media of Christian art in Rome were impelled by a growing network of Christian sites. This seminar is part of the ongoing…