Medieval images, especially manuscript illuminations, have long been treated independently of the contexts in which they were created. These beautiful miniature paintings, frequently valued as keepers of documentary evidence or as curious artistic commodities, have only recently become the focus of art historians concerned with new questions related to artistic working methods, audience and the status of the visual in the Middle Ages and the modern era. Excavating the Medieval Image argues that the illuminated image is best understood as thoroughly integrated in the material context of the manuscript - and thus, integrated in a cultural context of production and reception. Seen in this way, the illuminated manuscript becomes a kind of archaeological site, which must be carefully unearthed layer by layer. The fourteen essays gathered here are written by scholars of both medieval and Renaissance art history, and demonstrate varied methodological approaches that combine the pursuits of traditional connoisseurship and iconography with those of critical theory and historiography. In addition, the authors contribute more broadly to important interdisciplinary issues such as the study of gender, text and image, and the history of literacy and the book.
Contents: Introduction: Excavation and image, Nina A. Rowe and David S. Areford; Part 1 Texts and Pictures: Portraits and counterfeits: Villard de Honnecourt and 13th-century theories of representation, Stephen Perkinson; The limits of text and image? Matthew Paris's final project, the Vitae duorum Offarum, as a historical romance, Cynthia Hahn; Making the past present in Laurent de Premierfait's translation of De senectute, Anne D. Hedeman; Illuminating the Arras Mystery Play, Laura Weigert with the collaboration of Pascale Charron. Part 2 Women and Power: 'Richement et pompeusement par : the collier of Margaret of York and the politics of love in late medieval Burgundy, Jean C. Wilson; The horse and the hawk: representations of Mary of Burgundy as sovereign, Ann M. Roberts; Recycling Radegund: identity and ambition in the Breviary of Anne de Prye, V nique P. Day; Manual of dynastic history or devotional aid? Eleanor of Toledo's Book of Hours, Rowan Watson; 'Parlant de moy': manuscripts of La Coche by Marguerite of Navarre, Sherry C.M. Lindquist. Part 3 Art and Artists: Giovan Pietro da Birago, illuminator of Milan: some initials cut from choir books, Jonathan J.G. Alexander; Post Poyet, Roger S. Wieck; Ungrateful dead: Bruegel's Triumph of Death re-examined, Larry Silver. Part 4 Manuscripts and Modernity: Introducing Monsieur Gonfond, a 'Peasant-Illuminator' from St-R -de-Provence, Charlotte Daudon Lacaze; Genesis in Vienna: the Sarajevo Haggadah and the invention of Jewish art, Michael Batterman. Appendix: Bibliography of writings by Sandra Hindman; Index.