Coordinators: Ana Cabrera and Lesley Miller
This conference explores collecting practices, attitudes to and perceptions of Spanish decorative arts in Britain and Spain from the 19thcentury onwards, and how these attitudes influenced the development of museums and museum collections in both countries. The case studies aredrawnfrom the British and Spanish museum collections.
The conference is organisedin joint sessions dealing with the same subject from British and then Spanish perspectives. The first day considers the collecting of particular media while the second day focuses on the dissemination, display and conservation of these collections. The conference includes poster sessions during the coffee breaks.
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Friday, 8thJune 2008: Collecting Spanish Decorative Arts
10.00 Registration and collecting of conference packs; displaying of posters
Ana Cabrera, V&A
10:30 Collecting, Display & Dissemination: The Changing Face of the Decorative Arts Collection at South Kensington, 1852-1873
Susanna Avery-Quash, National Gallery, London
Lustreware and Furniture
Chair: Holly Trusted, V&A
11.00 Collecting Spanish Lustreware at the Victoria and Albert Museum
Mariam Rosser-Owen, Asian Department, V&A
11:30 A Survey and History of the Collecting of Spanish Decorative Arts: Lustreware
Jaume Coll, Museo Nacional de Cerámica, Valencia
12.00-12.30. COFFEE BREAK
12:30 Collecting Spanish Furniture, Woodwork and Leatherwork, 1850-1950
Nick Humphrey, Furniture, Textiles and Fashion department, V&A
13:00 Collecting Spanish Furniture in Madrid, 1880-1920
Sofía Rodríguez, Museo Nacional de Artes Decorativas, Madrid
Textiles and Fashion
Chair: Sonnet Stanfill, V&A
14:30 Following the Thread: Collecting Spanish Textiles at the Victoria and Albert Museum
Ana Cabrera, Marie S.-Curie Fellow, V&A
15:30 Textile Collecting in Catalonia
Silvia Carbonell, Centre de Documentació i Museu Tèxtil, Terrasa
16:00 Fashion and Spain at the Victoria and Albert Museum
Oriole Cullen, Furniture, Textiles and Fashion Department, V&A
16:30 From Dress to Fashion: The Collection of The Museo del Traje
Helena López del Hierro, Museo del Traje, Madrid
16.30-17.00 TEA BREAK
Sculpture and Plaster Casts
Chair: Edward Payne, Auckland Castle Project
17.00 A Vogue for St Francis
Xavier Bray, Wallace Collection, London
17:30 Spanish Monuments Displayed at South Kensington: Raising the Profile of Spanish Art through Plaster Casts
Holly Trusted, Sculpture, Metalwork, Ceramics and Glass Department, V&A
18:00 Electrical Treasuries: The Decorative Arts Collection from Antiquity at the Museo Nacional de Reproducciones, 1881-1915
María Bolaños, Museo Nacional de Escultura, Valladolid
Saturday, 9thJune 2008: Collecting Spanish decorative arts continued
Chair: Antonia Boström, V&A
10:15 The Scholar, the Scoundrel and the Skater: How the V&A Collections of Hispanic Silver were formed
Kirstin Kennedy, Sculpture, Metalwork, Ceramics and Glass Department, V&A
10:45 Collecting Spanish Silver
Jesús Rivas, Universidad de Murcia
Displaying, Interpreting and Conserving Spanish Decorative Arts
Chair: Christopher Wilk, V&A
11.45 Displaying Decorative Arts in Britain and Spain. A Comparative Analysis
Isabel Rodríguez, Museo Nacional de Artes Decorativas, Madrid
12.15 Spain in the Europe 1600-1815 Galleries at the V&A
Lesley Miller, Furniture, Textiles and Fashion Department, V&A
12.45 The20th-century Galleries at the V&A
Corinna Gardner and Johanna Agerman Ross, Design, Architecture and Digital Department, V&A
Displaying, Interpreting and conserving Spanish decorative arts
Chair: Joanna Norman, V&A
14.15 The Conservationof the Cast Courts. New Discoveries from Spanish Casts
Victor Borges, Conservation Department, V&A
14:45 Collecting in Action: Building a Spanish Gallery in Bishop Auckland
Edward Payne, The Auckland Project
15.15 Closing remarks
Joanna Norman, Head of the Victoria and Albert Research Institute (VARI)
Miguel González Suela, Directorate of the State Museum, Spanish Ministry of Education, Culture and Sports
Short, informal papers are invited for the next meeting of The Maius Workshop, a community of graduate students and early career researchers working on Iberian and Latin American arts, histories and cultures. For more information about the group, please visit their website.
The meeting will take place in the Research Forum, The Courtauld Institute, London WC2R 0RN on June 11 2018, 6:00–7:30pm
The theme of the meeting is ‘Imagining Spain and Latin America abroad.’ Discussion may consider exchange, trade, and the foreign reception of Spanish and Latin American art and culture.
Informal presentations should last no longer than 15 minutes.
The Maius Workshop endeavours to create a supportive environment to present new ideas and talk through problems and open questions. Collaborative research is central to the group’s ethos, and it aims to encourage dialogue rather than showcase fully-resolved material.
If you are interested in attending or presenting your work, please email email@example.com before May 15, 2018.
Roger Martinez is pleased to announce the launch of a new Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) that specifically focuses on medieval Spanish paleography training. The course is called Burgos: Deciphering Secrets of Medieval Spain and it will be offered on a monthly basis on coursera.org at https://www.coursera.org/learn/burgos-deciphering-secrets-medieval-spain. The next class begins on 9 April 2018. This six-week course is intensive — it requires, on average, 10-12 hours of your time per week.
This is the first of three new MOOCs that offer intensive paleography training. Three additional MOOCs pertaining to the medieval/early modern history of Toledo, Plasencia, and Granada, will be launched over the next 3 to 9 months. These courses are in addition to an introductory course on medieval Spain titled, Coexistence in Medieval Spain: Jews, Christians, and Muslims, and another titled, Deciphering Secrets: The Illuminated Manuscripts of Medieval Europe.
This advanced course focuses on two primary goals: (1) appraising how Jews, Christians, and Muslims shaped the history of medieval Spain and (2) mastering the craft of Spanish paleography, the skill of identifying Spanish handwriting in the 11th- through 15th-century manuscripts. Through the lens of the medieval history of Burgos, we dedicate 75% percent of our efforts to developing pragmatic expertise in the interpretation of Carolingian/French/Gothic handwriting.
Specifically, the course explores how the royal Castilian city of Burgos influenced, and was influenced by, Jews, Christians, and Muslims. We closely evaluate the Spanish Christian Reconquest, the Plague and the 14th-century Castilian civil war, anti-Jewish pogroms, the emergence of elite conversos (Jewish converts to Christianity), and the role of the king and Roman Catholic Church in the creation of Catholic Spain. Through onsite interviews in archives and museums in Burgos, we experience the medieval city, artifacts, and manuscripts. While we teach using Spanish manuscripts, very little or no knowledge of the Spanish language is necessary to complete the course.
Using an intensive array of paleography practices, exams, independent projects, and collaborative efforts, you will garner exceptional skills that you can apply to interpreting any medieval European handwriting. To demonstrate your mastery of paleography you will (1) create a 14th-15th-century alphabet, numeral, and abbreviation guide using manuscript images, and (2) transcribe one selection from a medieval manuscript.
Call for papers: The Courtauld Institute of Art’s 23rd Annual Medieval Postgraduate Colloquium: Collecting (in) the Middle Ages, The Courtauld Institute of Art, 16 February 2017
Deadline: 15 November 2017
The Courtauld Institute of Art’s 23rd Annual Medieval Postgraduate Colloquium invites speakers to consider the nature of medieval collections, the context of their creation and fruition, and their legacy — or disappearance — in the present.
Inspired by objects such as a cedar box chest once kept in the Holy of Holies of the Lateran, this colloquium seeks to explore a diverse set of topics surrounding medieval practices of collecting. This wooden box may seem simple, but once opened it reveals a priceless collection: fragments of rock and wood from the Holy Land, each labelled with its precise place of origin by a sixth-century hand. Here and there, stones have fallen out, leaving imprints in the soil. The wooden relic chest is an object of small size and almost no material value, but has nevertheless been treasured for centuries by one of the largest and most powerful institutions of the medieval world.
The study of medieval collecting raises a variety of questions. How and why were objects collected, practically and conceptually? What was their expected time-span and what enabled their survival? How have medieval collections impacted modern scholarship, and how do modern collecting and display practices influence our interpretation of the past?
Applicants to the colloquium are encouraged to explore these issues from a diverse range of methodologies, analysing objects from the 6th to the 16th century and from a wide-ranging geographical span. Possible areas of discussion might include:
The Medieval Postgraduate Colloquium offers an opportunity for research students at all levels from universities across the UK and abroad to present, discuss and promote their research. To apply, please send a proposal of up to 250 words for a 20 minute paper, together with a CV, to firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com no later than 15 November 2017.
The Maius Workshop is an interdisciplinary group that brings together graduate students and early career scholars dealing with Hispanic art (broadly considered to include literature, theatre, music, etc.) and history from the Middle Ages to the Early Modern Period. The aim of the Maius Workshop is to encourage dialogue among specialists in different stages of their academic life and to provide a forum for discussing methods of information gathering and research news. The group is kindly supported by ARTES.
The workshop is named after the tenth-century painter of the Morgan Beatus manuscript as it wishes to create an interdisciplinary space where scholars of art and history can interact. Through a series of reading group meetings, the Workshop aims to bring together young researchers tackling the study of Hispanic culture and history and to create a strong network of specialists of Medieval and Early Modern Iberia and Latin America.
Thanks to the new connections that the group will create, the meetings will develop current research rather than present finished projects. The group’s activities are directed to the diffusion of the interest in Iberian and Latin American cultural creations, with the long-term aim of establishing a permanent community open to all students of Hispanic art and history.
The Maius Workshop’s first meeting will take place on Monday 16 October at 6 pm at the Warburg Institute. This will be an informal meeting and an opportunity to meet postgraduate researchers with similar interests, to discuss how these interests can be drawn together in a reading group setting. The meeting is open to MA, PhD and early career researchers. Refreshments will be provided.
If you are interested in the activities of this research group or would like to attend the meeting, please fill in this form
I have carried out a three-month fellowship in London from March 1st to May 31st, 2017, conducting research in several museums, libraries and academic institutions of the city. My main goal was to study a selection of textiles from the Furniture, Textiles and Fashion (FTF) Department of the Victoria & Albert Museum. I have undertaken this work as an Erasmus + Visiting Fellow at the V&A’s Research Department in collaboration with the Marie S.-Curie project Interwoven (no. 703711) led by Dr Ana Cabrera Lafuente. Dr Cabrera acted as my fellowship’s supervisor and this granted me the opportunity of working closely to a specialist. Thanks to this, I have acquired new knowledge and methodological skills in the field of textiles.
I based my study on the examination of raw materials, weaving techniques, decorative patterns and iconography of textile fragments and ecclesiastical vestments related to Medieval and Early-modern Iberia. These pieces were selected in accordance with the interests of the Interwoven project and my own. The research also paid attention to the dispersion of connected fragments and pieces among different institutions and collections, identifying them through a comparison of their catalogues and online databases. The reading of records and files held at the V&A’s Archive related to acquisitions from Spain in the early decades of the Museum helped me to complete the biographical information of certain pieces. The physical examination of the textiles was carried out with Dr Cabrera at the Clothworkers’ Centre for the Study and Conservation of Textiles and Fashion, while the bibliographical and writing work took place at the V&A’s FTF Department. This research will allow the Museum to update their textile collections’ data and widen the scope of information accessible on the Museum’s own database and its online version ‘Search the Collections’.
Beyond my work at V&A, I was able to devote a few daily hours to library research at the Warburg Institute, SOAS, and the British Library. During these sessions, I dedicated my time to the gathering of bibliographical material for an ongoing study on the role of textiles in the fashioning of clerical dignity and the valuation of the ecclesiastical space during the central Middle Ages in Iberia. I presented the preliminary results of this research during the ‘Work in Progress Seminars’ held in the V&A’s Research Department with a talk entitled ‘Ecclesiastical textiles and vestments from Medieval Iberia: promoting the clergy and shaping sacred space in a reforming church’ (May 2nd, 2017). Moreover, the access to the bibliographical resources held at these institutions enabled me to update and enrich the contents and critical apparatus of the forthcoming publication of my PhD dissertation, focused on the Romanesque sculpture of the Cathedral of Jaca.
During my stay in London I was pleased to attend conferences on Medieval Iberian art and Islamic studies, particularly the symposium ‘Gothic Architecture in Spain: Invention and Imitation’ (The Courtauld Institute of Art, March 16th, 2017) and the workshop ‘Researching the Islamic State: New Challenges and Opportunities’ (UCL, March 28-29th, 2017), as well as lectures and seminars on Medieval sculpture, Late Gothic fashion and Arabic palaeography –among other topics– at The Courtauld and SOAS. I was also able to exchange ideas with scholars specialising in textiles and in Spanish Medieval Art as Drs Lesley Miller, Tom Nickson, Rose Walker, Kirstin Kennedy and Nicola Jennings, and benefit from their advice and research experience.
By Dr Francisco de Asís García García, Universidad Complutense de Madrid