Plate [detail], Portugal, ca. 1500–1525, embossed silver-gilt, 3.3 x diam. 22 cm. New York, Metropolitan Museum of Art. Image: Public Domain.
This year’s prize is awarded to Dr Simon Park, an early career scholar at the University of Oxford. Simon’s essay, ‘Chasing Wild Men (in Silver)’ examined silverwork in early Renaissance Portugal, and was highly commended by the committee.
We regret that the postponement of our AGM means we cannot award the prize in person, but congratulate Simon on a wonderful piece of research.
In the winter of 1550 the most famous painter in Europe came face to face with the most powerful man on earth. What emerged from this encounter between Prince Philip of Spain and the Renaissance master Titian is seen as one of the most extraordinary commissions in all of Western art history.
Given almost total creative freedom, Titian was free to explore any subject he pleased. He returned with a set of increasingly dark and explicit images about sexual pursuit, assault and violence. Known as The Poesie, these pictures are admired for their groundbreaking brushwork and innovative composition – yet they remain Titian’s most disturbing and puzzling creations.
Now, coinciding with the National Gallery’s exhibition, which brought the paintings together for the first time in 300 years, we ask why this illusive, dark and often disturbing set of paintings has come to be seen as Titian’s greatest work.
This film includes scenes showing Dr. Gabriele Finaldi, Director of the National Gallery, closing the exhibition shortly after opening due to COVID-19.
First aired on 4 April 2020, the documentary is available on BBC iPlayer for the next 30 days. Click here to watch.
The call for papers is open for the DR-DS 2020 International Congress, which will be hosted in the cities of Seville and Granada, from the 11th to the 15th of May, 2020. The congress will include inaugural and closing conferences by professors Amadeo Serra, from the Universitat de València, and Fernando Marías, from the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, as well as a number of highly qualified guest speakers.
The great transformation experienced by Spanish architecture during the reign of Emperor Charles V finds a brilliant and diverse expression in the activity of Diego de Riaño and Diego Siloé. Both masters, one working in the Sevillian metropolis and the other in the former Nasrid capital, the last bastion of Islam on the Peninsula, defined two very different models of operation. Both produced some of the first Spanish buildings with a fully Renaissance language.
This congress proposes to approach these two great architects in the context of the transition to the Renaissance in Spain. They will also serve as a pretext for tackling similar phenomena from a broader perspective, incorporating methodological and historiographic problems within a European framework. The organisers invite national and international researchers to an event that builds a cooperative space for interdisciplinary dialogue, offering an attractive and exciting programme of keynotes and plenary sessions given by experts in the field, with the presentation of unpublished papers selected by a scientific committee. All contributions will be published in an edited volume. Papers are subject to evaluation using a double-blind peer reviewed system to ensure scientific quality.
The congress will be hosted in Seville and Granada. The organization will be responsible for the transport between the two cities. The conference will open on 11 May in Seville. Paper sessions will be accompanied by special visits, for example to the sacristy of Seville cathedral and the city’s town hall, both works by Diego de Riaño. On 13 May sessions will take place in Granada, including a visit to the cathedral, designed by Diego Siloé, and Charles V’s palace, designed by Pedro Machuca.
The conference will focus on the following themes: General: – Theoretical and historiographic approaches. – Graphic and documentary testimonials.- Science and technology. – Architecture and city. – Promoters, patrons, ideologists, artificers. Specific: – Diego de Riaño and Lower Andalusia. – Diego Siloé and Eastern Andalusia. – The transition to Renaissance in other areas.
Alonso Berruguete: First Sculptor of Renaissance Spainwill be the first major exhibition held outside Spain to celebrate the expressive art of the most important sculptor active on the Iberian Peninsula during the first half of the 16th century, Alonso Berruguete. The exhibition will present an impressive range of more than 40 works from across his career, including examples of his earliest paintings from his time in Italy, where he trained. His abilities as draftsman will also be celebrated with the largest group of his drawings ever to be assembled. The primary focus will be on his painted sculptures in wood, which generally decorated large altarpieces, or retablos. The Museo Nacional de Escultura in Valladolid, Spain, will be lending a substantial group of some of his very best figures. A section of one of his altarpieces will be loosely reconstructed in the exhibition to convey an idea of how his sculptures were originally seen.
The exhibition is curated by C. D. Dickerson III, curator and head of sculpture and decorative arts, National Gallery of Art, Washington.
A fully illustrated catalog accompanying the exhibition will be the first general book on Berruguete published in English and will feature essays by Dickerson as well as Manuel Arias Martínez, deputy director, Museo Nacional de Escultura, Valladolid, and Mark McDonald, curator of Italian, Spanish, Mexican, and early French prints and illustrated books, The Metropolitan Museum of Art. The exhibition was organized by the National Gallery of Art, Washington, and the Meadows Museum, SMU, Dallas.
It will travel to theMeadows Museum, Southern Methodist University, Dallas, from March 29 to July 26, 2020.
In ‘Black but Human’ Carmen Fracchia, Reader in Hispanic Art History at Birkbeck, explores the emergence of the slave and freed slave subjects in the visual form of Imperial Spain. The book considers the links between visual regimes and early modern Spanish discourses on slavery and human diversity that are the historic roots of contemporary racism in the Hispanic world.
‘Black but Human’ is the first study to focus on the visual representations of African slaves and ex-slaves in Spain during the Hapsburg dynasty. The Afro-Hispanic proverb ‘Black but Human’ is the main thread of the six chapters and serves as a lens through which to explore how a certain visual representation of slavery both embodies and reproduces hegemonic visions of enslaved and liberated Africans, and at the same time provides material for critical and emancipatory practices by Afro-Hispanics themselves.
The African presence in the Iberian Peninsula between the late fifteenth century and the end of the seventeenth century was as a result of the institutionalization of the local and transatlantic slave trades. In addition to the Moors, Berbers and Turks born as slaves, there were approximately two million enslaved people in the kingdoms of Castile, Aragón and Portugal. The ‘Black but Human’ topos that emerges from the African work songs and poems written by Afro-Hispanics encodes the multi-layered processes through which a black emancipatory subject emerges and a ‘black nation’ forges a collective resistance. It is visually articulated by Afro-Hispanic and Spanish artists in religious paintings and in the genres of self-portraiture and portraiture. This extraordinary imagery coexists with the stereotypical representations of African slaves and ex-slaves by Spanish sculptors, engravers, jewellers, and painters mainly in the religious visual form and by European draftsmen and miniaturists, in their landscape drawings and sketches for costume books.
Click here for more information and to pre-order this book
VALENTÍN CARDERERA Y SOLANO (Huesca, 1796 – Madrid, 1880) was a painter, scholar, communicator, collector and traveller. His life was marked by his efforts to safeguard Spain’s historical heritage and he journeyed around much of the Spanish mainland to bear witness in his drawings and watercolours to significant monuments, many at risk of disappearance as a result of the modernising drive ushered in by the new liberal order. Member of the Romantic generation and friends with the Madrazo family, Carderera was also in contact with some other figures like Richard Ford and Prosper Mérimée, with whom he shared the same nostalgia for the past and the need to define his position in the complex debate between tradition and progress.
The exhibition—featuring more than a hundred pieces including paintings, drawings, engravings, manuscripts, books, maps and objects—pays tribute to Carderera’s work and the significant legacy he left in the Biblioteca Nacional de España. In 1867 the Spanish State adquired his collection of drawings and prints: more than 45.000 pieces which enriched the department of Fine Arts with engravings of Mantegna, Dürer and Rembrandt, among others, along with one of the very few drawings attributed to Velázquez. Click here for more information.
The exhibition opens on 27 September in the Biblioteca Nacional de España’s Sala Hipóstila. It was curated by José María Lanzarote Guiral and organised by the Biblioteca Nacional de España and Centro de Estudios Europa Hispánica.
It is accompanied by a an exhibition catalogue which reconstructs Carderera’s intense life in six thematic sections, published by CEEH. Until 25 September, the catalogue can be purchased from the CEEH website at special discount price. Click here for more information.