Early Modern Encounters #1

9 December 2021, 3:00:00 am

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Session Convenors

Dr Victoria Hobday, University of Melbourne
Professor Anne Dunlop, University of Melbourne

Session Moderators

Dr Victoria Hobday, University of Melbourne

Session Speakers

Joanne Morice, University of Melbourne
Dr Lisa Mansfield, University of Adelaide

The period between about 1250 and 1650 saw new and accelerating contact and exchange – of artists, patrons, places, materials, technologies, and objects- on an increasingly global scale. Some of these encounters were voluntary, and others forced (by war or colonization, for instance); some forms of encounter were themselves imagined through objects and artworks that moved, or written sources about other people, places and things.

PAPER #1
The Dynamics of Cultural Transfer: Swiss Artist Mercenaries in Northern Italy

PRESENTER
Dr Lisa Mansfield, University of Adelaide

For Northern Renaissance artists working in the first half of the sixteenth century in Switzerland and Germany, the relentless series of conflicts that raged across the Italian peninsula provided a supplementary, albeit rigorous and risky, source of financial security and social prestige by way of mercenary service. While the customary year of travel or Wanderjahre was already a rite of passage for Swiss artists like Urs Graf (Solothurn and Basel), Niklaus Manuel Deutsch (Bern), and Hans Leu (Zurich) to augment their technical development and professional networks as journeyman, the cultural impact of their repeated incursions into Lombardy on extended military campaigns for competing foreign powers remains an elusive topic in art historical studies of artistic mobility. This paper will explore dynamic points of contact between Swiss artist mercenaries and their encounters with Italian Renaissance images and objects, with a comparative analysis of experimental drawing practices and burgeoning collections of drawings fostered by bourgeois patrons north and south of the Alps during the Italian Wars (1494-1559).

PAPER #2 (pre-recorded presentation)
Baldassare degli Embriachi, World Maps and Trade Networks

PRESENTER
Joanne Morice, University of Melbourne

Baldassare degli Embriachi was a Florentine merchant and art entrepreneur. He is most famous for the carved ivory and bone objects that were produced from his workshops in Venice and Florence during the late fourteenth and early fifteenth centuries. However, in 1399 he commissioned four world maps (mappamundi) from the Majorcan cartographer Jaume Riba, and a Genoese painter Francesco Becaria, who were both residing in Barcelona at the time. Taking the commissioning of these maps by Embriachi as a starting point this paper seeks to understand his participation in knowledge making and transfer in the late fourteenth century and to articulate, in part, his relationship to the diverse network of artisans, traders, and map makers that was active in Spain, and the Mediterranean during the period. It will bring into view some of the art materials and objects that moved along these networks.

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Biographies

Dr Victoria Hobday, University of Melbourne

Dr Victoria Hobday lectures and teaches Renaissance Art History at the University of Melbourne. Her research interests include material and print culture and the intersection of art and science in the early modern period.


Professor Anne Dunlop, University of Melbourne

Anne Dunlop is the Herald Chair of Fine Arts at the University of Melbourne. She has also taught at Yale University and Tulane University. She works on Italian and European art in the later Middle Ages and early modern period, researching and writing on links between Italy and Eurasia in the Mongol period. She has been a Visiting Professor at Zhejiang University, Peking University and at Harvard’s Villa I Tatti Centre for Italian Renaissance Studies.


Joanne Morice, University of Melbourne

Joanne Morice is a PhD candidate at the University of Melbourne. Her research focuses on trade networks, materials and making, and consumption in Italy and around the Mediterranean in the Early Modern period.


Dr Lisa Mansfield, University of Adelaide

Lisa Mansfield is Senior Lecturer and Head of Art History at the University of Adelaide. Her research concentrates on early modern art and material culture in northern Europe, including portraiture and courtly image-making, representations of gender, and cultural intersections between art, war, and images of violence. She was awarded a Renaissance Society of America (RSA) Kress Fellowship for Art History at the Centre for Reformation and Renaissance Studies (CRRS), Victoria College, University of Toronto (2018), and was a Chief Investigator on the Australian Research Council Discovery Project, ‘The Italian Wars, 1494-1559’ (2018-2020).