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Volume Editor: Sofia Kotzabassi
What was happening in Byzantium as the Turks drew ever closer to Constantinople and an interest in classical Greek studies had been rekindled in the West? What was the role of the Byzantine scholars in an Empire facing multiple political and economic problems, and what were the matters that engaged them? What was the importance of teachers, libraries and monasteries to the so-called Palaeologan Renaissance, and what the significance of the theological disputes?

These questions and more are addressed in the twelve essays authored by international experts of this Companion, which advances our understanding of the intellectual milieux, trends, and achievements of the Palaeologan period.

Contributors are: Giuseppe De Gregorio, Pantelis Golitsis, Eleni Kaltsogianni, Apostolos Karpozilos, Sofia Kotzabassi, Sophia Mergiali-Sahas, Ioannis Polemis, Alexander Riehle, Demetra Samara, Ilias Taxidis, and Ioannis Vassis.
Written by the poet-painter Karel van Mander, who finished it in June 1603, the Grondt der edel, vry schilderconst (Foundation of the Noble, Free Art of Painting) was the first systematic treatise on schilderconst (the art of painting / picturing) to be published in Dutch (Haarlem: Paschier van Wes[t]busch, 1604). This English-language edition of the Grondt, accompanied by an introductory monograph and a full critical apparatus, provides unprecedented access to Van Mander’s crucially important art treatise. The book sheds light on key terms and critical categories such as schilder, manier, uyt zijn selven doen, welstandt, leven and gheest, and wel schilderen, and both exemplifies and explicates the author’s distinctive views on the complementary forms and functions of history and landscape.
Studies of Mimesis and Materials in Nature, Art and Science
Volume Editors: Marjolijn Bol and E. C. Spary
Mimesis or imitation comes in many forms, from animal and plant mimicry to artistic copies ‘from life’. This book offers eighteen essays addressing mimesis from diverse perspectives. From the recreation of galaxies to Iron Age torcs, from counterfeit dragons to modern waxworks, each chapter explores facets of material mimesis from prehistory to the present day. The Matter of Mimesis invites readers to compare practices of imitating, faking, and synthesising materials and objects in nature, art and science, raising questions about skills, techniques and politics of making that transcend historical and disciplinary boundaries and inform both our past and future worlds.
Public Porticoes, Small Baths, Shops/Workshops, and ‘Middle Class’ Houses in the East Mediterranean
Author: Solinda Kamani
This book examines neglected architectural decoration from the late antique city of the East Mediterranean. It addresses the omission in scholarship of discussion about the embellishment of non-monumental secular buildings (public porticoes, small public baths, shops/workshops, and non-elite houses). The finishing of these structures has been overlooked at the expense of more lofty buildings and remains one of the least known aspects of the late antique city.
The book surveys the archaeological evidence for decoration in the region, with the maritime sites of Ostia and Ephesus selected as case studies. Drawing upon archaeological, written, and visual sources, it attempts to reconstruct how such buildings appeared to late antique viewers and investigates why they were decorated as they were.
A Companion to the Renaissance in Southern Italy (1350-1600) introduces for the first time readers unfamiliar with Southern Italy to different aspects of the history and culture of this vast and significant area of Europe situated at the center of the Mediterranean during the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries.

Commonly regarded as a backward, rural region untouched by Italian Renaissance, this book presents both a general survey of the most recent research on the centers of southern Italy, and insights into the ground-breaking debates on wider themes, such as the definition of the city, continuity and discontinuity at the turn of the sixteenth century, and the effects of dynastic changes from the Angevin and Aragonese Kingdom to the Spanish Viceroyalty.

Contributors include Giancarlo Abbamonte, David Abulafia, Francesco Caglioti, Guido Cappelli, Bianca De Divitiis, Chiara De Caprio, Fulvio Delle Donne, Teresa D’Urso, Dinko Fabris, Guido Giglioni, Antonietta Iacono, Fulvio Lenzo, Lorenzo Miletti, Francesco Montuori, Pasquale Palmieri, Eleni Sekallariou, Francesco Senatore, Francesco Storti, Pierluigi Terenzi, Carlo Vecce, Giuliana Vitale, and Andrea Zezza.
Art, Material Culture, and British-Russian Relations
Volume Editor: Louise Hardiman
“Courtly Gifts and Cultural Diplomacy” explores the history of British-Russian state relations from the perspective of art and material culture. This richly illustrated book presents manifold practices of courtly gift-giving and vivid case studies of British-Russian artistic diplomacy over the centuries. It traces a visual and material history of cross-cultural dialogue that starts with an early English map of Russia made in the 16th century and ends with gifts of Fabergé art objects and domestic photographs exchanged between the British royal family and the family of Tsar Nicholas II in late Imperial Russia. Twelve expert authors from academia, the arts, and the museum sectors in Britain, Russia, and the United States present new narratives and critical interpretations based on material from previously unexplored archives. Their diverse approaches reveal the importance of artistic diplomacy and the agency of gifts of art and material culture in courtly and state relations.
Author: Maggie Atkinson

Abstract

This examination asserts that artist and photographer Hannah Maynard’s association with late-nineteenth-century North American organizations that advocated the often-repudiated notion of the possibility of spiritual life after physical death informed her photographs. Spiritualists offered numerous examples of alternative existences after corporeal demise, and this paper will explore the possibility that Maynard used her knowledge to re-create and re-interpret late-nineteenth and early-twentieth century perceptions of a realm of Spirit.

In: Religion and the Arts

Abstract

For a long time, Herman Hesse’s celebrated Siddhartha (1922) popularized a version of Buddhism in the West. However, by comparing it to Kunzang Choden’s The Circle of Karma (2005), the first Bhutanese novel published in English, with its similar plot of a seeker, this essay finds the ways it displays a Westernized ideal of Buddhism. Unlike The Circle of Karma, Siddhartha actually relies on Western ideas of individualism and self-reliance.

In: Religion and the Arts