Call for Papers: Wider Worlds: Art and Audience Under the Spanish Crown, The Frick Collection, New York, April 5, 2018
Deadline: Dec 12, 2017
The Frick Collection, New York
The Frick Collection is pleased to invite submissions for “Wider Worlds: Art and Audience under the Spanish Crown,” a public symposium inspired by the special exhibition Zurbarán: Jacob and His Twelve Sons, Paintings from Auckland Castle (January 31 to April 22, 2018). Co-organized with the Meadows Museum, in Dallas, where the paintings are currently on view, this exhibition marks the first time that Francisco de Zurbarán’s set of thirteen monumental canvases depicting the family of the biblical prophet Jacob will be displayed in the Americas.
Zurbarán’s paintings were probably commissioned in the 1640s for a monastery in colonial Spanish Peru, where the popularity of this particular iconography drew on histories positing the indigenous inhabitants of the Americas as “lost descendants” of the twelve tribes of Israel. The works traveled to England and, in 1756, entered the collection of the bishop Richard Trevor, an advocate for the rights of Jewish people. This history, as well as the apocryphal story of the paintings’ seizure by pirates, prompts us to think seriously about the afterlives of objects, anticipated versus accidental receptions, and art’s capacity for generating multivalent, sometimes competing, interpretations. For Jacob and His Twelve Sons, those interpretations range from justifying the enterprises of one colonial empire to serving as symbols of religious tolerance in another.
We welcome proposals for twenty-minute papers on the status of the art object and the circulation of objects and ideas in the early modern Hispanic world. Please send a C.V. and 250-word abstract by Tuesday, December 12, 2017, to email@example.com. Submissions from emerging scholars, including early career university and museum professionals and advanced doctoral students, are particularly encouraged. Possible lines of inquiry include:
• How artists, patrons, and audiences dealt with anxieties around distance, delay, and the conveyance of meaning in the diverse and multilingual early modern Hispanic world;
• Re-signification and/or halted trajectories in the biographies of objects, especially in a global context;
• The imaging of origin myths and master narratives;
• How Iberia’s Jewish and Islamic pasts were interrogated and reinterpreted in Catholic image practices;
• The issue of workshops, masters, and authorship and their relationship to global markets;
• The global and material turns in art-historical scholarship.
“Wider Worlds: Art and Audience under the Spanish Crown” is convened by Caitlin Henningsen (The Frick Collection) and Adam Jasienski (Southern Methodist University). Susan Grace Galassi (Senior Curator, The Frick Collection) will preside.
Zurbarán: Jacob and his Twelve Sons, Paintings from Auckland Castle, Meadows Museum, Dallas, USA, September 17, 2017 – January 7, 2018
Francisco de Zurbarán was born in Fuente de Cantos, in Western Spain, but spent most of his working life in Seville. Like Ribera, Zurbarán is also considered a Caravaggista (a follower of the Italian painter Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio, active 1571-1610) particularly for his exceptional use of chiaroscuro.
These 13 paintings (12 by Zurbarán and one a direct copy of the work by Zurbarán) are a visual narrative of Jacob’s deathbed act of bestowing a blessing on each son, foretelling their destinies and those of their tribes. Although each painting holds its own as an exceptional portrait, seeing the works together provides a unique experience for viewers, transporting them across history to make them a witness to that moment. At the Meadows, the paintings will be displayed together in one gallery.
It is not known who originally commissioned the series, but they were auctioned from the collection of a Jewish merchant named Benjamin Mendez in 1756. Richard Trevor, Bishop of Durham, acquired the paintings for Auckland Castle, seeing in the public presentation of these works an opportunity to make a statement about the need for social, political and religious understanding and tolerance between Christians and Jews in Great Britain.
While in the USA, the paintings will also undergo in-depth technical study for the first time at the Kimbell Art Museum. This will include the use of infrared reflectography, ultra-violet light, x-radiography and pigment analysis. The goals of this work are twofold: first, to gain a better understanding of Zurbarán’s artistic process by exploring this unique series of related works; and second, to identify any additional needs for their ongoing conservation and care after they return to the U.K.
Accompanying the exhibition and conservation research will be an illustrated catalogue containing scholarly essays exploring the series from various historical, religious and artistic perspectives. Dr. Mark A. Roglán, Director, Meadows Museum, is the scientific director of the project and has helped to gather contributions by Claire Barry, Director of Conservation, Kimbell Art Museum; Professor John Barton, Oriel and Laing Professor of the Interpretation of Holy Scripture, Emeritus at Oxford University; Dr. Jonathan Brown, Carroll and Milton Petrie Professor of Fine Arts at New York University; Dr. Christopher Ferguson, Curatorial, Conservation and Exhibitions Director, Auckland Castle; Dr. Susan Grace Galassi, Senior Curator, The Frick Collection; Akemi Herráez Vossbrink, PhD Candidate at the University of Cambridge; Alexandra Letvin, PhD Candidate at Johns Hopkins University; and Dr. Edward Payne, Senior Curator, Spanish Art, Auckland Castle. This exhibition and study have been co- organized by the Meadows Museum, SMU; The Frick Collection; and Auckland Castle; in association with the Kimbell Art Museum. A generous gift from The Meadows Foundation has made this exhibition and study possible, with additional support from the Centro de Estudios Europa Hispánica and the Center for Spain in America.
The Hermitage, Amsterdam, 28 November 2015 – 29 May 2016
More than sixty paintings and a rich collection of graphic works and applied arts masterpieces are on show.
Comprises a selection of predominantly Spanish, Italian and Early Netherlandish paintings and sculpture ranging in period from the Early Renaissance through until the late Baroque.
Link to the web catalogue
Link to the catalogue (page-turner version)