Corpus of Romanesque Sculpture in Britain and Ireland (CRSBI) Annual Lecture 2015
Tuesday 28 April 2015
17.30, Kenneth Clark Lecture Theatre, Courtauld Institute of Art
Tessa Garton (Professor Emerita, College of Charleston, South Carolina):
Evidence Set in Stone? Twelfth-century Sculptors and Workshop Practices in Northern Palencia, Spain
Open to all, free admission
The northern region of Palencia, close to the pilgrimage route to Santiago de Compostela, contains a remarkable number of well-preserved and richly carved Romanesque churches, concentrated in the region around Aguilar de Campoo, and close to quarries with excellent quality stone for sculpture. The repetition of similar designs at many different locations suggests a system of professional production by a workshop engaged on multiple commissions, and the mass-production of standard motifs. Signatures and inscriptions provide evidence of the increasingly professional status of sculptors; most remarkable is the portal at Revilla de Santullan, where Micaelis depicts himself next to the apostles and in the act of carving the tablecloth for the Last Supper. The discovery of marginal engravings on a group of sculptures recently removed from the church at Santa Maria de Piasca, in Cantabria, provides further insights into the working practices of the masons.
Tessa Garton studied History of Art at the University of East Anglia with Peter Lasko and Eric Fernie, and at The Courtauld Institute of Art with George Zarnecki, writing her PhD on Early Romanesque Sculpture in Apulia. She taught at the University of Aberdeen and at the College of Charleston, South Carolina, and has recently retired. Her major area of interest is Romanesque sculpture; she served as an investigator for the Corpus of Romanesque Sculpture in Ireland, and has studied Romanesque sculpture in Apulia, Scotland, Ireland, France and Spain. Her recent research has been focused on northern Spain, on the pilgrimage route to Santiago de Compostela and the region of northern Palencia.