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Illuminating Sanctity

The Body, Soul and Glorification of Saint Amand in the Miniature Cycle in Valenciennes, Bibliothèque Municipale, MS 500


Maria R. Grasso

Maria R. Grasso’s monograph on the twelfth-century illustrated vita of Saint Amand, Valenciennes, Bibliothèque municipale MS 500, presents new information regarding its contents. The author’s discovery and analysis of a second almost complete set of preliminary drawings beneath another set of the same drawings demonstrates that important alterations were made prior to the execution of the cycle. Grasso’s discussion includes the probable reason for the change: the isolation of the terminating folio depicting the soul of Amand. This important devotional image is the focus of detailed analysis since the soul of Amand rests in the lap of a male figure she convincingly identifies as Christ, an extremely unusual placement for the soul of a saint, demonstrating the creativity of the artists.

Das Auge der Geschichte

Der Aufstand der Niederlande und die Französischen Religionskriege im Spiegel der Bildberichte Franz Hogenbergs (ca. 1560–1610)


Ramon Voges


Perceptions of the Dutch Revolt continue to this day to be shaped by Frans Hogenberg's visual reports on its events. In his book Das Auge der Geschichte, Ramon Voges offers for the first time a comprehensive historical analysis of these prints. By examining the broadsheets not as reflections of past events, but as a form of complex visual historiography, he approaches the well-known depictions made at the Hogenberg workshop in Cologne from a new angle.

His study provides insights into how the visual reports tell the story of great European conflicts in the age of the Wars of Religion. The book not only contributes to the history of historiography, it also reveals how Hogenberg’s prints participated in conflicts about power, faith, and violence.


Die Bildberichte Franz Hogenbergs prägen bis heute die Vorstellungen vom Aufstand der Niederlande. In seinem Buch Das Auge der Geschichte macht Ramon Voges die Druckgraphiken erstmals zum Gegenstand einer umfassenden historischen Untersuchung. Indem er die Blätter nicht als Abbilder eines früheren Geschehens, sondern als vielschichtige Form einer Geschichtsschreibung in Bildern analysiert, wirft er einen neuen Blick auf die vertrauten Darstellungen aus Hogenbergs Kölner Werkstatt.

Seine Studie gibt darüber Aufschluss, wie die Bildberichte die Geschichte der europäischen Großkonflikte im Zeitalter der Religionskriege erzählen. Sie leistet damit nicht nur einen Beitrag zur Geschichte der Geschichtsschreibung. Sie legt auch offen, wie Hogenbergs Druckgraphiken in die Auseinandersetzungen um Glauben, Herrschaft und Gewalt eingegriffen haben.


Suzanne Karr Schmidt

Suzanne Karr Schmidt's Interactive and Sculptural Printmaking in the Renaissance tells the story of a hands-on genre of prints: how innovative paper engineering redefined the relationship of early modern viewers to art, humanism, and science.
Interactive and sculptural prints pervaded the European reading market of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. Single sheets and book illustrations featured movable flaps and dials, and functioned as kits to build three-dimensional scientific instruments. These hybrid constructions—part text, part image, and part sculpture—engaged readers; so did the polemical, satirical, and, occasionally, erotic content. By manipulating dials and flaps, or building and using the instruments, viewers learned to think through images as well as words, interacting visually with desires, social critique, and knowledge itself.

BLAST at 100

A Modernist Magazine Reconsidered


Edited by Philip Coleman, Kathryn Milligan and Nathan O'Donnell

BLAST at 100 makes an original contribution to the understanding of a major modernist magazine. Providing new critical readings that consider the magazine’s influence within contexts that have not been acknowledged before – in the development of Irish and Spanish literature and culture in the twentieth century, for example, as well as in the areas of cultural studies, performance studies and the scholarship of teaching and learning – BLAST at 100 reconsiders the magazine’s complex legacy. In addition to situating the magazine in new and often unexpected contexts, BLAST at 100 also offers important new insights into the work of some of its most significant contributors, including Wyndham Lewis, Ezra Pound, and Rebecca West.

Contributors are: Philip Coleman, Simon Cutts, Andrzej Gąsiorek, Angela Griffith, Nicholas E. Johnson, Kathryn Laing, Christopher Lewis, J.C.C. Mays, Kathryn Milligan, Yolanda Morató, Nathan O’Donnell, Alex Runchman, Colm Summers, Tom Walker


Simon Cutts

Drawing on his experience over several decades, especially with Tarasque Press and Coracle, in this essay Simon Cutts explores the ways in which his work has evolved in relation to BLAST and the broader tradition of the “little magazine”.


Kathryn Laing

The contradictions implied by Lewis’s title, BLAST, at once destructive explosion and originary moment, conjure the image of a literary “Big Bang”. This sets the scene for the critical approach of this essay to Rebecca West’s story, “Indissoluble Matrimony”, and its fittingly uneasy fit in its BLAST contexts. The essay attends to the theme and metaphor of genesis, textual and contextual origins, and the idea of creative explosion. This includes discussion of West’s contributions to Dora Marsden’s The Freewoman/New Freewoman and her early fiction experiments. It also argues for a more careful consideration of intersections between Lewis’s artworks and West’s prose of this period, surfacing further possible reasons for its inclusion in BLAST. The essay concludes with an analysis of how the story simultaneously acknowledges and subverts its debts to feminist and literary models and a reconsideration of the story in its “bibliographic environment”.


Christopher Lewis

In this essay the thematic collision between “mythic” and “modern” worldviews is explored in relation to Enemy of the Stars, Wyndham Lewis’s Vorticist play. At the time of writing Enemy of the Stars, Lewis was interacting with a strong current in modernist thought which had grown out of Friedrich Nietzsche’s claim that cultural renewal depended upon art’s return to a cultic origin in the revived forms of “myth” and “ritual”. But at the same time that this sacred origin of art is invoked as a source of cultural regeneration, Enemy of the Stars also subtly reveals the material pressures to which art is subjected in the rationalized modern world. The narrative result is that a primitive ritualistic spectacle is mediated and subverted by the box office of the modern theatre, providing an important parable for the problematic aspirations of modern art.


Edited by Philip Coleman, Kathryn Milligan and Nathan O’Donnell


Kathryn Milligan

“A Review of Contemporary Art” appeared in the second issue of BLAST, published in July 1915. In it, Wyndham Lewis evokes the energetic changes then taking place in painting as the traditional form of the medium and its subjects were dismantled and reconstructed in new, complex ways, made manifest in British painting through the art of Lewis and his Vorticist companions. This essay explores how Lewis conceived of, and presented to the reader, the development of modern painting. Furthermore, it seeks to consider Lewis’s text in relation to the writings of his contemporaries, and how the narrative of changes in modern painting was constructed and presented to a wider audience.


Philip Coleman

This essay, an exercise in the scholarship of teaching and learning (SoTL), describes the experience of using the two issues of BLAST as the primary material for an undergraduate module taught in the School of English, Trinity College Dublin, in 2014 and 2015. The relationship between the BLAST module as it was taught in Trinity and the task of teaching modernism in general is described in an opening section that also outlines the specific pedagogical backdrop in tcd. The essay then goes on to explore some of the challenges and opportunities involved in discussing the magazine in the classroom. Drawing on site-specific documents such as the module reading schedule and its learning outcomes statement, as well as titles of student essays, a detailed account is given of the ways in which students responded to the magazine and its various materials in a particular pedagogical context. Abstracts from a selection of longer student essays are given in an appendix, following a concluding section in which the experience of teaching BLAST is related to broader questions of research and modernist pedagogy in the early twenty-first century.