IMC 2016: Sessions

Session 730: Gradations of Life, I: Representing Inanimate Matter in Medieval Manuscripts

Tuesday 5 July 2016, 14.15-15.45

Sponsor:Universität Hamburg
Organisers:Isabella Augart, Kunstgeschichtliches Seminar, Universität Hamburg
Ilka Mestemacher, Kunstgeschichtliches Seminar, Universität Hamburg
Moderator/Chair:Isabella Augart, Kunstgeschichtliches Seminar, Universität Hamburg
Paper 730-aRepresentation with Inanimate Matter in Medieval Manuscripts
(Language: English)
Spike Bucklow, Hamilton Kerr Institute, Fitzwilliam Museum, University of Cambridge
Spike Bucklow, Hamilton Kerr Institute, Fitzwilliam Museum, University of Cambridge
Index terms: Art History - Painting, Manuscripts and Palaeography, Technology
Paper 730-bMoving Patterns: Textile Pages in Medieval Manuscripts
(Language: English)
Anna Bücheler, Kunsthistorisches Institut, Universität Zürich
Anna Bücheler, Kunsthistorisches Institut, Universität Zürich
Index terms: Art History - Painting, Manuscripts and Palaeography, Religious Life
Paper 730-cThe Life of Silva and the Work of the Poet in the Cosmographia of Bernard Silvestris
(Language: English)
Anya Burgon, Department of History of Art, University of Cambridge
Anya Burgon, Department of History of Art, University of Cambridge
Index terms: Language and Literature - French or Occitan, Manuscripts and Palaeography, Mentalities
Abstract

On the Scala Naturae, the steps between the realms of inanimate nature and the animals are so small that we struggle to see the boundaries, as Aristotle holds it in his Historia animalium. The session aims to explore these boundaries and gradations between inanimate and animate matter in medieval manuscripts. Reconsidering medieval definitions of minerals and stones, plants and animals according to the paradigms of existence, life and moving, we seek to provide perspectives on the transgression of these definitions. What is the status of transgressive matter like amber, corals, fossils, ivory, silk, or fur? Looking at manuscripts as the site of textual and visual knowledge, as material object and as aesthetic realm generating the marginalia’s own reality, this session brings together interdisciplinary perspectives on the ways materiality was constructed, categorized, and valued in the Middle Ages.