IMC 2016: Sessions

Session 830: Gradations of Life, II: Representing Inanimate Matter in Medieval Manuscripts

Tuesday 5 July 2016, 16.30-18.00

Sponsor:Universität Hamburg
Organisers:Isabella Augart, Kunstgeschichtliches Seminar, Universität Hamburg
Ilka Mestemacher, Kunstgeschichtliches Seminar, Universität Hamburg
Moderator/Chair:Sara Ritchey, Department of History & Geography, University of Louisiana Lafayette
Paper 830-aBeing Licked into Shape: The Bestiary and the Medieval Margins of Creation
(Language: English)
Diane Heath, Centre for Medieval & Early Modern Studies (MEMS), University of Kent
Diane Heath, Centre for Medieval & Early Modern Studies (MEMS), University of Kent
Diane Heath, Centre for Medieval & Early Modern Studies (MEMS), University of Kent
Index terms: Art History - Painting, Manuscripts and Palaeography, Mentalities
Paper 830-bLiving Stones: Vegetated Architecture in Medieval Canon Tables
(Language: English)
Ilka Mestemacher, Kunstgeschichtliches Seminar, Universität Hamburg
Ilka Mestemacher, Kunstgeschichtliches Seminar, Universität Hamburg
Ilka Mestemacher, Kunstgeschichtliches Seminar, Universität Hamburg
Index terms: Art History - Painting, Manuscripts and Palaeography, Religious Life
Paper 830-cRecreating Transgressive Matter: Pearls in Girolamo da Cremona's Illuminations
(Language: English)
Isabella Augart, Kunstgeschichtliches Seminar, Universität Hamburg
Isabella Augart, Kunstgeschichtliches Seminar, Universität Hamburg
Isabella Augart, Kunstgeschichtliches Seminar, Universität Hamburg
Index terms: Art History - Painting, 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.