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36ème Congrès du CIHA - Lyon 2024

Parrainé par le Ministère de la Culture,
le Ministère de l'Enseignement supérieur et de la Recherche,
le Ministère de l'Europe et des Affaires étrangères

Appearance and Perception - Apparence et Perception

Gastronomie et flânerie : visualités et matérialités alimentaires dans la ville moderne

Frédérique Desbuissons 1, Richard Wrigley 2

1Université De Reims Champagne-Ardenne - Reims (France), 2University Of Nottingham - Nottingham (United Kingdom)

Sujet en anglais / Topic in english

This session aims to study the role, forms and stakes of the manifestations of food in modern cities between the 18th and 20th centuries. It will focus on the different dimensions of the aesthetic experience of flâneurs/flâneuses in a period marked by the rise of the culture of 'eating well' and but above all eating in public. The city, its food shops and markets, were the privileged spaces for the apprehension and appropriation of a form of consumption which spanned luxury and necessity, the multiplicity and exoticism of which had been increasing since the end of the Ancien Régime. We propose to consider it from the perspectives of material culture, art and visuality. The bodily dynamics characteristic of strolling invite us to take into account both the devices and scenographies of the experience of the good and the beautiful (signs, advertisements, displays, shop windows, etc.), and the architectural and urban arrangements that articulate them (streets, passages, stalls, restaurants, cafés, grocery shops, etc.), as well as the uses and representations that animate them. The experience of flâneurs/flâneuses embodies the ambiguities of food as commodity and as spectacle : their itineraries follow the presence of food on show, but also invariably include entering restaurants and ‘dematerialising’ food. Analysing the spectacle of food is also a way to investigate hierarchies of consumption and their topographical distribution.

The theme of materiality chosen by the CIHA organisers seems to us to be ideal for contributing to a history of gastronomy, considered in its visual, material and sensual dimensions, rather than in terms of literary or anthropological priorities. history of vocabulary and rhetoric, or a set of conventions or rules. The history of art has an essential role to play in understanding the gastronomic culture of major Western cities. While specialists in the art of the modern period have readily addressed the relationship between art and food, and if the 2015 Universal Exhibition "Feeding the Planet" gave the opportunity for a vast panorama (Arts & Foods. Rituali dal 1851, cat. exp. Milan, 2015), much remains to be done on the representations, performances and urban scenographies of food in the modern period.

Sujet de la session en français / Topic in french

Cette session se propose d’étudier le rôle, les formes et les enjeux des manifestations de l’alimentation dans villes modernes, entre le XVIIIe et le XXe siècle. Elle mettra l’accent sur les différentes dimensions de l’expérience esthétique des flâneurs et flâneuses dans une période marquée par l’essort de la culture du « bien-manger », en particulier dans la dimension publique de l’alimentation. La ville, ses marchés et ses commerces de bouche ont constitué les espaces privilégiés de l’appréhension et de l’appropriation d’une forme de consommation prise entre luxe et nécessité, dont la multiplicité et l’exotisme ont été croissants depuis la fin de l’ancien l’Ancien. Nous proposons de l’envisager sous l’angle de la culture matérielle, de l'art et de la visualité. Les dynamiques corporelles propres à la flânerie invitent à prendre en compte à la fois les dispositifs et les scénographies de l'expérience du bon et du beau (enseignes, publicités, affichages, vitrines, etc.), les aménagements architecturaux et urbains qui les articulent (rues, passages, échoppes, restaurants, cafés, épiceries…), les usages et les représentations qui les animent, ou encore les ambiguïtés de la nourriture, à la fois marchandise et spectacle telle qu’elles s’incarnent dans l'expérience des flâneurs et flâneuses, dont les itinéraires suivent les denrées à l’étalage, mais aussi invariablement l’entrée dans les restaurants et la « dématérialisation » de l’alimentation, ou rendent perceptibles, par l’analyse du spectacle de la nourriture, les hiérarchies de la consommation et leur distribution topographique.

Le thème Matière Matérialité du CIHA 2024 nous semble idéal pour contribuer à une histoire de la gastronomie qui ne soit pas réduite à la mise en mots ou en règles induite par son étymologie (gastro-nomie). En mettant en évidence la contribution des objets, images et expériences concrètes à la relation qualitative à l’alimentation (bien-manger), l’histoire de l’art est essentielle à la compréhension de la culture gastronomique des grandes villes occidentales. Or si les spécialistes de l'art de l'époque moderne ont volontiers abordé les relations de l’art et de l’alimentation, et que l’Exposition universelle de 2015 sur le thème « Nourrir la planète » a donné l’occasion d’un vaste panorama (Arts & Foods. Rituali dal 1851, cat. exp. Milan, 2015), beaucoup reste à faire sur l’articulation de la flânerie aux représentations gastronomiques durant la période contemporaine.

Multisensory materiality

Viveka Kjellmer1 , Érika Wicky2, Astrid von Rosen3

University Of Gothenburg - Gothenburg (Sweden), 2Bibliotheca Hertziana (Italy), 3University of Gothenburg (Sweden)

Sujet en anglais / Topic in english

This session aims to explore the non-visual aspects of art and materiality. How do sound, scent, taste and touch evoke new aspects of materiality in art? How can a multisensory approach open gateways to understanding and experiencing art?

We have recently seen a growing trend of immersive art exhibitions all over the globe. Immersive is the new black when it comes to art as experience, but as art historians we struggle to research the sensorial upsurge with traditional methods. New perspectives and methods can help us understand these added, or rather re-emerging, qualities of art.

The material turn explored the connection between visuality and materiality. To take it further, the sensorial turn in the humanities in general (Howes & Classen); and in art history in particular (Rose & Hendricks; von Rosen & Kjellmer) opens for updated perspectives where the non-visual senses are brought back into the analytical discussion.

We are interested in how multisensory approaches can help us take back what has been obscured during the years of focus on the visual aspects of art. The pictorial turn and the focus on visual culture helped broaden the field of art history and inspired a less hierarchical empirical outlook where not only traditional art but visual events such as digital images, garden design, fashion objects and scenography can add valuable insights. But in this process, we may have forgotten about the sensorial values of experiencing art. The traditional, but often unspoken, expertise of art historians is more than visual: what we experience in presence of the artwork potentially engages all our senses. As put by W.J.T. Mitchell (2005): “There are no visual media”; all visual experiences also evoke other sensory cues. Not only can the non- visual aspects give us valuable additional input about the aesthetic objects studied, they may also constitute artworks in their own right.

The last 20 years have seen a growing interest in multisensory art, each sense at a time, or together as multisensory Gesamtkunstwerke (Conference ‘Uncommon Senses III: The future of the senses’, Concordia university 2020). Insights in olfactory art and communication (Drobnick; Hsu), auditory art (Krogh Groth & Schultze; Matthias, Prior & Grant), gustatory art (Klein & Jordan) and tactile aspects of art as translations of visual art, but also as artworks exploring embodied reactions and sensations (Bacci & Melcher; Christidou & Pierroux), show that sensory communication has potential when it comes to understanding art, both historical and contemporary.

Painting the Materials, Imitating the Techniques. A Dialogue between Mediums in Early Modern Art

Roxanne Loos 1, Valentina Hristova 2
Université Catholique De Louvain - Louvain-La-Neuve (Belgium), 2Humboldt Universität Zu Berlin - Berlin (Germany)

Sujet en anglais / Topic in english

How can we comprehend the trend for simulating materials in European painting between the 15th and 17th centuries? Was it simply a demonstration of technical virtuosity underscoring the superiority of pictorial practice over the other arts? These issues are worth revisiting in light of anthropological approaches and materiality studies regarding the communicative potential of early modern images.

Since Leonardo, debates on the paragone have essentially focused on the confrontation between painting and sculpture. However, Renaissance workshop practice shows that this comparison is far from limited to questions of art hierarchies. Recent scholarship on intermediality (Oy-Marra 2018), matter (Bol, Spray 2023) and colour (Boudon-Machuel, Brock, Charron 2012) has stressed that the quest for mimesis is inseparable from fantasia and a growing preoccupation with the agency of images. Jan van Eyck’s grisailles on the reverse of altarpieces or Fra Angelico’s fictive marbles are just a few examples illustrating the meaningful transpositions of materiality in both Northern and Southern Europe.

Feigned representations of marble, bronze, wood, stucco, mosaic, pietra serena, or tapestry emerge as critical loci for assessing how the skilful imitation of one medium by another could open up new ways for investigating the ability to deceive the eye. Far from incidental, such fictitious incursions usually underlie complex processes of intellectual and sensorial transfers. The choice of the counterfeit medium is also significant. Challenging literature on materiality (Anderson, Dunlop, Smith 2014) and mediality (Kiening, Stercken 2018; Weddigen 2011) points out the need to analyse materials (or techniques) in terms of their physical and visual properties, with specific symbolic connotations. Furthemore, anachronism offers a compelling avenue for further inquiry (Nagel, Wood 2010). The afterlife of Antiquity calls attention to the programmatic way in which the classical past is borrowed to enhance the dynamic interplay between mediums.

Whether motivated by aesthetic, spiritual or ideological objectives, material mimesis contends undoubtedly with a productive tension between the painted surface and realspace. These counterfeit elements often act as thresholds, underpinning the narrative’s construction and regulating its meaning-making process.

This session scrutinizes, therefore, the semantic and symbolic vitality conveyed by the painters’ reflection upon perception and appearance (fragility/solidity, flatness/rilievo, brightness/darkness, preciousness/simplicity) emphasizing the sumptuousness of the artworks at a lower cost.

Bétons apparents : stratégies plastiques. Empreintes, textures, aspects

Gwenaël Delhumeau 1 , Cyrille Simonnet 2
Ensa Versailles (France), 2Université de Genève (Switzerland)

Sujet en anglais / Topic in english

In this session, which focuses on the materiality of concrete, we propose to question the project processes that integrate a reflection on the question of the animation of surfaces. We would like to start from the latter to try to analyse what is projected onto it. By animation, we mean aspect, texture, imprint, trace..., everything that conditions the visuality of the material.

To cross the reality of it implies, in a way, to turn the building on itself (the building as a material entity but also as a field of activities). It would then be, by a sort of involution, a way of understanding it from the thickness of its surfaces and no longer only in its mass, its geometry, its structure. This implies a shift of attention towards the time proper to the pouring, within the very formwork of which the concrete walls are the imprint. In other words, on the threshold of a technical operation of "taking form", which we know, with Gilbert Simondon, is forever veiled from those who work to achieve it. It is not only the cement which is setting. The act of casting materializes in specific traces. They speak. What do they say? That is the question.

Although the history of the material (concrete) shows that the architectural debates around this question are well identified, they often hide the strategies implemented in the construction field by the building companies and the prefabrication sectors to respond to the requirements and the economy of the prescription.

Trying to "give concrete a grimace", as François Hennebique recommended at the beginning of the 20th century, is in fact an unavoidable imperative for those who are trying to impose a material that does not yet exist beyond the economic and technical cultures that promote its use (industrial equipment at first, the entire sector later).

Behind this falsely casual slogan (to give concrete a face...), there are many things. It is the productive mechanics of a nascent practice, which invents its tools, adjusts its instruments, refines its technique, and seeks its language at the dawn of a history that is both resourced by it and distrusted by it. Coated, bleached, made up, tattooed, sanded, scarified, ostensibly exposing its wounds... concrete makes a sign, it catches the eye, it tells something. There is a kind of narrative here, which is not only superficial...

It seems important to test this narrative against the scale of the construction site or the prefabrication unit; in this way, we can approach the interplay of procedures and concrete processes in which so many operators confront the surface of the material, and collaborate in the definition of plastic integration strategies that are sometimes very voluntary and of which architects are the heralds.

At the articulation of the designed and the built, we would like in this session to question head- on the traces of a production that often evades the narrative, while impartially offering the spectacle of it.

Sujet de la session en français / Topic in french

Dans cette session centrée sur la matérialité propre du béton, on propose d’interroger les processus de projet qui intègrent une réflexion sur la question de l’animation des surfaces. On voudrait ainsi partir de ces dernières pour tenter d’analyser ce qui s’y projette. Par animation, nous entendons aspect, texture, empreinte, trace…, tout ce qui conditionne la visualité du matériau.

En traverser la réalité implique en quelque sorte de retourner le bâtiment (comme entité matérielle mais aussi comme champ d’activités) sur lui-même. Ce serait alors, par une sorte d’involution, une façon de le saisir (le prendre, le comprendre) depuis l’épaisseur de ses surfaces et non plus seulement dans sa masse, sa géométrie, sa structure. Ce qui implique un déplacement de l’attention vers le temps propre de la coulée, au sein même des coffrages dont les murs en béton sont l’empreinte. Soit au seuil d’une opération technique de « prise de forme », dont on sait avec Gilbert Simondon qu’elle est à jamais voilée à ceux qui œuvrent à son accomplissement. Il n’y a pas que le ciment qui « prend ». L’agir du coulage se matérialise dans des traces spécifiques. Elles parlent. Que disent-elles ? C’est la question.

Si dans l’histoire du matériau (béton), les débats architecturaux autour de cette question sont bien repérés, ils occultent souvent les stratégies mises en œuvre dans le champ constructif par les entreprises de bâtiment et les filières de préfabrication pour répondre (et ainsi en devancer les orientations, en termes industriels) aux exigences et à l’économie de la prescription.

Tâcher de « donner une grimace au béton », comme le préconisait au début du XXème siècle François Hennebique, relève en effet d’un impératif incontournable pour celui du moins qui s’efforce d’imposer un matériau qui n’existe pas encore au-delà des cultures économiques et techniques qui en promeuvent l’usage (l’équipement industriel d’abord, le secteur dans son entier plus tard).

Derrière ce mot d’ordre faussement désinvolte (donner une grimace…), il y a bien des choses. C’est le rouage productif d’une pratique naissante, qui invente ses outils, règle ses instruments, affine sa technique, cherche son langage à l’orée d’une histoire qui à la fois s’y ressource et s’en méfie. Enduit, blanchi, maquillé, tatoué, poncé, scarifié, exposant ostensiblement ses blessures… le béton fait signe, il accroche l’œil, il raconte quelque chose. Il y a là comme un récit, qui n’est pas que superficiel…

Il semble important d’éprouver ce récit à l’aune du chantier de construction ou de l’unité de préfabrication ; ainsi aborder le jeu des procédures et des processus concrets où tant d’opérateurs se confrontent à la surface du matériau, et collaborent à la définition de stratégies d’intégrations plastiques parfois très volontaires dont les architectes se font les hérauts.

À l’articulation du conçu et du construit, nous voudrions dans cette session interroger frontalement les traces d’une production qui souvent se dérobe au récit, tandis qu’elles en offrent imparablement le spectacle.

Tapestries: Materiality, Meaning and Intermediality in a Longue Durée Perspective

Merit Laine 1, Martin Olin 2, Elodie Pradier 3
Uppsala University - Uppsala (Sweden), 2Nationalmuseum - Stockholm (Sweden), 3Université Bordeaux-Montaigne (France)

Sujet en anglais / Topic in english

There is perhaps only one historic occasion that is referred to through the materiality that defined it: The meeting of the kings François I of France and Henry VIII of England at the Field of Cloth of Gold in 1520. Among the textiles then displayed were tapestries: images glowing with colour and woven with the finest wool, silk, and gold, as described by contemporaries. This was not a unique instance: beautiful and costly tapestries have served to define persons, events, and spaces in many parts of the world for a very long period of time. The materials and the highly skilled and complex production processes of fine tapestries resulted in an instantly recognizable materiality that constituted the essence of the meaning of these objects, beyond any iconographic content of their design. Materiality thus constituted a large part of their agency. A set of tapestries could envelop and transform the space in which it was displayed, which could be anywhere. Moving across borders and continents, these textiles became part of transnational material cultures that still survive, in secular as well as religious, public as well as private spaces. Often treasured for generations, tapestries continued to accumulate unique meanings and increase their agency throughout their history. Even new tapestries carried the inherited meaning of their materiality.

From Antiquity onwards, tapestries have also been the subject of intermedial representations and allusions in an increasing range of textual and pictorial media and genres, up to the film sets and advertisements of the present day. Such representations and allusions often convey material characteristics, thereby referencing the impact of the materiality of actual tapestries. While materials, production, and specific workshops have long been important subjects of research, tapestry materiality as such has not been the primary focus of systematic study. The papers of this panel may present results, or explore questions, methods, and theoretical frameworks for further, interdisciplinary research. The focus is tapestries produced for, displayed in, and/or referencing courtly and other elite contexts. A longue durée perspective is suggested by surviving objects and references from Antiquity onwards, the long continuities of production and display practices, and the relevance of tapestries to-day. In a wider perspective, it is hoped that this approach will contribute to our understanding of how the meanings and agency of materiality survive and are modified, across time and space.

Exhibition Design: between materiality and spatial dramaturgy

Pamela Bianchi 1, Wesley Meuris 2
Ensapb - Paris (France), 2Sint Lucas Antwerpen (Belgium)

Sujet en anglais / Topic in english

Keywords: exhibition design, art narratives, curatorial studies, museums

This session focuses on the materiality of exhibition devices and their role in shaping knowledge. It is interested in examining the changing ontology of exhibition design, arising today from new curating approaches, such as hybrid installations, speculative narratives and aesthetic experience. Expanding existing scholarship and research on exhibition design studies, this session considers exhibition-making processes, materials and structures, and explores how the materiality of the exhibition (the curatorial and exhibition design practices) can spatialise aesthetic experience, foster spatial perception and, importantly, reposition the individual at the centre of newly-created social and spatial narratives.

Since the 1980s, the art world has moved away from an object-oriented culture to a systems- oriented one. This created a form of permeability that allowed for hybrid creative and exhibition formulas to appear: sort of meta-sculptures and meta-spaces capable of generating experience and knowledge. From the landmark exhibition Contemporanea (Villa Borghese, Rome, 1973) to Liam Gillick’s show Renovation Filter: Recent Past and Near Future (Arnolfini, Bristol, 1999); from the Boijmans Museum’s archive in Rotterdam (The Depot, 2021) to the hybridizations of the Atelier van Lieshout, the alternative models of social and economic organisations of Superflex and the display projects of Adrien Gardère Studio, it becomes clear that artworks are not the only parts integral to an exhibition. Rather, architectural and design structures, as well as different types of spaces and materials (see Carlo Scarpa’ travertine panels at the Querini Stampalia Foundation in Venice), become important signifying and relational exhibition parameters that question the exhibiting in terms of curating, display, experience and contents. The close relationship between exhibits and design elements defines a kind of spatial dramaturgy that resurfaces today in hybrid exhibitions (temporary and permanent), where the ontological limits of their components are challenged by a post-media creative approach. Moving beyond rigid positioning and strict epistemological margins, a new ontology of exhibition devices seems to offer a new compositional freedom to conceptualise and articulate a range of curatorial intents, meanings and means of communication.

This session aims to question what exhibition design could be and could do today in terms of the ontology of an exhibition, and to explore the role of its materiality, both technical and theoretical, in the narrative processes. Neither a simple process of visual representation nor a product of an architectural gesture, exhibition design could be understood as integrating the idea of an art form in itself.

Sujet de la session en français / Topic in french

Mots-clés : conception d'exposition, récits d'art, études curatoriales, musées

Cette session se concentre sur la matérialité des dispositifs d'exposition et leur rôle dans l’articulation de la connaissance. Elle s'intéresse à l'examen de l'ontologie changeante du design d’exposition, découlant aujourd’hui de nouvelles approches en termes de curating : installations hybrides, récits spéculatifs, expérience esthétique. Élargissant les connaissances et les recherches existantes autour du sujet, cette session examine les processus, les matériaux et les structures expographiques, et explore la manière dont la matérialité de l'exposition (curating et design d’exposition) peut spatialiser l'expérience esthétique, favoriser la perception spatiale et, surtout, repositionner l'individu au centre de récits spatiaux et sociaux renouvelés.

Depuis les années 1980, le monde de l'art est passé d'une culture object-oriented à une systems-oriented. Cela a créé une forme de perméabilité qui a permis l'apparition de formules hybrides, créatives et expositionnelles : sorte de méta-sculptures et de méta-espaces capables de générer de l'expérience et de la connaissance. De l'exposition phare Contemporanea (Villa Borghese, Rome, 1973) à celle de Liam Gillick Renovation Filter: Recent Past and Near Future (Arnolfini, Bristol, 1999); des archives du Musée Boijmans à Rotterdam (The Depot, 2021) aux hybridations de l'Atelier van Lieshout, ou encore des modèles alternatifs d'organisations sociales et économiques de Superflex jusqu’aux projets muséographiques du Studio Adrien Gardère à Paris, il devient clair que les œuvres ne sont pas les seuls éléments constitutifs d'une exposition. Au contraire, les structures architecturales et de conception expographique, ainsi que les différents types d'espaces et de matériaux (voir les panneaux de travertin de Carlo Scarpa à la Fondation Querini Stampalia à Venise), deviennent des importants paramètres signifiants et relationnels qui questionnent l'exposition en termes de curating, display, expérience et contenus. La relation étroite entre les expositions et les éléments de conception expographique définit une sorte de dramaturgie spatiale qui réapparait aujourd'hui dans des expositions hybrides (temporaires et permanentes), où les limites ontologiques de leurs composants sont remises en question par une approche créative post-média. Au-delà du positionnement rigide et des marges épistémologiques strictes, une nouvelle ontologie des dispositifs d'exposition semble offrir aujourd’hui une nouvelle liberté compositionnelle pour conceptualiser et articuler une gamme d'intentions curatoriales, de significations et de moyens de communication.

Cette session vise à questionner ce que pourrait être et pourrait faire le design d'exposition aujourd'hui en termes d'ontologie d'une exposition, et à explorer le rôle de sa matérialité, à la fois technique et théorique, dans les processus narratifs sous-jacents. Ni simple processus de représentation visuelle ni produit d'un geste architectural, le design d'exposition pourrait même être compris comme intégrant l'idée d'une forme d'art en soi.

The Matter of Edges

Alfred Acres1 , Marine Kisiel2

1Georgetown University - Washington (United States), 2Palais Galliera, Musée de la Mode de la Ville de Paris (France)

Sujet en anglais / Topic in english

Much has been written about the boundaries of pictures and other works of art. Physical frames, manuscript margins, borders, framing devices, and cropping are but a few of the phenomena we explore in this light. Among less formal, more philosophical reflections on the periphery of a work, many will think first of parergon as a supple term of analysis.

Less has been said about material change or elaboration between the core of a work and its limit. This can happen in many ways—sometimes in a transition of one medium or technique to another, sometimes in a switched representational mode, sometimes with mutual infiltrations between internal and external elements. Such changes can be gradual or abrupt, inconspicuous or obtrusive. All of them, however, reveal conscious thought not only about the appearance and meaning of a work, but also its material and conceptual geography; relative distances are gauged both internally and toward—or from—surroundings. Medium, support, technique, display apparatus, and setting are integrated or separated in countless ways.

So what? If all works of art have edges of some kind, might the topic be too general to be useful? Not if we approach it with precise observations, fresh questions, and art from a breadth of places and times not usually considered together. What aims or considerations inform an artist’s formulation of edges? In what ways do those formulations shape emphasis, diffusion, or other vectors of attention? What functions or meanings are served? How can such efforts guide narrative, devotion, persuasion, cogitation, or feeling? When do edges demarcate a difference between subject and surplus, or between something and nothing? Do some works of art obviate the edge as fact or idea? Papers for this panel need not explicitly address these or comparably “meta” questions about edges. Not every paper, in other words, will center the edge per se. Most will instead consider a single work or body of works that articulate edges in novel or otherwise revealing ways. The panel’s approach can thus be fittingly centripetal, with a variety of cases drawing us toward a core of inquiry that might otherwise remain indistinct.

Artifice: The art of deception / Artifice : l'art du trompe-l'oeil

Delphine Morana Burlot1, Paola D'alconzo2, Sigrid Mirabaud3

1Univ Paris I - Paris (France), 2Univ Federico Ii - Napoli (Italy), 3Institut national d’histoire de l’art (INHA) - Paris (France)

Sujet en anglais / Topic in english

Imitating rare or precious material with different media has long been part of artistic processes, and it was used to sublimate the aspect of valued artifacts.

From faint-marbles in stucco works in Antiquity mentioned by Pliny the Elder, to fake beads and jewelry of the French Royal Crown in the 18th century, the expected conferences will focus on artisans’ skills in imitating precious materials and how the prowess of imitation was perceived by their contemporaries (patrons, collectors). Fake is now viewed negatively and can even be legally punished, whereas in past times imitation materials were more frequently viewed as even more beautiful than the precious stone or metal that it was copying.

These questions are related to the perception of artists’ skills in rendering the illusion, the value of artistic work and craft, and to the questions of authenticity and deception, but are often attached to the idea of a laborious and slow process in the making. Far away from the expression of a genius mind (Wittkower; Heinich), that rises in a lightning strike (Diderot), imitation requires time and experience, as well as invention and ingenuity. A shift in the valuation of the “artifice” appears in 18th century, when the liberalization of fine arts (Painting, Sculpture and Architecture) tended to discredit laborious craft work: as ready-to- use pigments appeared on the market, some artists considered the only spiritual part of their work, discrediting the material one. The rise of industrialization and mechanical reproduction led to a devaluation of artistic imitation, as it was now made by a machine, without spirit, without an aura (Benjamin). On the other hand, the emergence of authorial agency (Nagel and Wood) and the development of collectionism (Griener) led to the rise of forgeries, and with it, material tricks were found by forgers in order to make modern artefact look older than they really are (Lenain).

The conferences will focus on different aspects of imitating artefacts, on their value, price, and trade, on invention in the making (tricks), current diagnostic methodologies to detect them, and on the status of fake objects in art criticism literature. We can mention examples of artifice: in Jewelry and goldsmith (strass and reproduction of reliquaries); in Tapestry (Painting-tapestry) ; in Sculpture (Estofado de oro, and anatomical models) ; in Painting, (imitation of more precious materials); in Mural Painting (stucco marble panels and scagliola); in Printmaking (imitation of drawing or painting), in Ceramics (imitation of metal or jade), Architecture. The question of artificial ageing of artefacts will also be considered, for instance in the making of fake works of art.

Sujet de la session en français / Topic in french

L’imitation de matériaux rares ou précieux à l’aide de différents moyens est un défi technique qui a longtemps été pratiqué par les artisans et les artistes afin de sublimer l’aspect des artefacts et œuvres d’art.

Des décors de faux marbres mentionnés par Pline l’Ancien, aux fausses perles et joyaux de la couronne au XVIIIe siècle, l’habileté des artisans en matière d’imitation de matériaux précieux était regardée comme une prouesse par leurs contemporains (mécènes, collectionneurs). Si le faux est aujourd’hui mal perçu, il peut même être sanctionné légalement, autrefois les matériaux d’imitation pouvaient être considérés comme plus dignes d’admiration que la pierre ou le métal précieux qu’ils copiaient.

Ces thématiques sont liées à l’importance donnée aux compétences artistiques en matière d’illusion, à la valeur accordée à l’art et à l’artisanat, aux questions d’authenticité et de falsification, mais elles sont également attachées à l’idée d’un processus de fabrication lent et minutieux. Loin de l’expression du génie (Wittkower ; Heinich), qui surgit comme un éclair (Diderot), l’imitation requiert du temps et du savoir-faire, ainsi que de l’invention et de l’ingéniosité. Un changement de la perception de « l’artifice » apparaît au XVIIIe siècle, lorsque la libéralisation des beaux-arts (peinture, sculpture et architecture) tend à discréditer le travail artisanal laborieux : avec l’apparition sur le marché de pigments prêts à l’emploi, certains artistes ne s’intéressent plus qu’à l’aspect intellectuel de leur création, discréditant ainsi l’aspect matériel. L’essor de l’industrialisation et de la reproduction mécanique a entraîné une dévalorisation de l’imitation, celle-ci étant désormais réalisée par une machine, sans aura (Benjamin). D’autre part, l’émergence de l’individualité auctoriale (Nagel et Wood) et le développement du collectionnisme (Griener) ont conduit à l’essor de la contrefaçon, et avec elle, des astuces matérielles ont été trouvées par les faussaires afin de faire paraître des artefacts modernes plus anciens qu’ils ne le sont en réalité (Lenain).

Les conférences porteront sur différents aspects de l’imitation des matériaux, leur valeur, leur prix et leur commerce, sur des astuces de fabrication, sur les méthodes de diagnostic actuelles pour les détecter et sur le statut des faux dans la littérature artistique.


Materials in the Making

Henrike Haug 1, Magdalena Bushart 2,Valérie Nègre 3
1University Of Cologne - Cologne (Germany), 2Technical University / Berlin - Berlin (Germany), 3Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne - Paris (France)

Sujet en anglais / Topic in english

DFG FOR Dimensions of techne in the Fine Arts – Manifestations / Systems / Narratives (Magdalena Bushart and Henrike Haug)

Only through processing will matter become material. Material narratives (and thus discussions of materiality) are therefore not only stories about their resources and exploitation, but also about the human handling and perception of materials. Both perception and application are interrelated: On one side, the supposedly inherent, supra-temporal material properties determine the processing. On the other side, the workmanship assigns certain properties to the material (and thus a different value corresponding to the cultural context).

We are no longer talking about material iconography or iconology, but rather about agencies, affordances or about semantics that ascribe the different materials to gender, region, nation, function, or time. Such codes can be based on literary traditions – religious texts, myths and legends, art theoretical treatises, historical narratives, or scientific interpretations - but can also be oriented on the model character of historical artefacts; often it is impossible to fully separate one from the other. In contrast, much less attention is paid to the actions on and in the material. Yet, as David Pye emphasised in "The nature and art of Workmanship", published in 1968, they play an essential role in defining the perception of material: The workman encounters an overwhelming number of "properties" of the material during his work operations. In this process, he has to decide which affordances of the material he wants to negate and which he wants to emphasise. This decision will depend on the period and location, the level of technical development, the status of art and craft, the dominant taste and the values associated with it. The possible applications are therefore never absolute, but always to be understood in a relational way and can be differently interpreted, reinforced, or also discarded with regard to the creative goal.

In our section, we want to focus on this interrelationship and ask how physical or chemical properties of materials, their “behaviour”, and their reaction to external influences are displayed in the artwork and how they affect the ways of use and handling. In this context, it is also important to consider the relationship between the “agency” of a material and cultural assignments, or between a “storied matter” and “stories about matter. The aim is no longer to determine the one meaning that is universal across all times or even cultures, but rather to delineate the field of possible meanings and to explore the overlaps that can result from the combination of different levels. The “material turn” thus becomes accompanied by a “production turn”, which emphasises the cultural embeddedness of the values and properties of "material".

Art and the Invisible / L'art et l'invisible

Taisuke Edamura1, Henri de Riedmatten2

J. F. Oberlin University - Tokyo (Japan), 2Université de Genève (Suisse / Switzerland)

Sujet en anglais / Topic in english

The limits of our seeing have continued to dissolve through unflagging technological development; we have striven to make visible what was formerly not and reveal its hidden wonder for centuries. While the idea of the primacy of vision might still lurk in our habitual seeing, artists have thrown out caveats as to its fruitlessness for decades, as surveyed in the 2012 exhibition at the Hayward Gallery in London. Invisible to us is not necessarily absent or empty. Rather, the invisible is filled with a richness obtained outside vision, be it perceptual or imaginative, the exhaustion of which has made possible a range of multi-sensorial and critical engagements with the world that surrounds us.

Yves Klein (1928-1962) freed the very essence of painting, or what he called sensibilité picturale, from the confines of the medium’s formal aspects, allowing visitors to his 1958 show at the Galerie Iris Clert in Paris to embrace its immaterial energy directly and with immediacy. More sinisterly, Mexican Teresa Margolles’ Air (2003) basks us in air humidified with water used to clean murdered bodies prior to autopsy. For the artist, no graphic pictures can be more powerful than the particulate traces of the dead to speak of the violence faced by the victims. The invisible also significantly enhances our senses. Chris Burden (1946-2015) tested this by making himself unseen from viewers during his durational performance piece White Light/White Heat (February 8-March 1, 1975) at the Ronald Feldman Gallery in New York. Provided with nothing worth looking at, they were forced to “experience the art through other means than mere looking, and conceptually to connect visibility to invisibility” (Stiles 2007).

Sujet en français / Topic in french

Les limites de notre vision ont continué à se dissoudre par un développement technologique indéfectible ; nous nous sommes efforcés de rendre visible ce qui ne l'était pas auparavant et de révéler ses merveilles cachées pendant des siècles. Si l'idée de la primauté de la vision peut encore se tapir dans nos habitudes visuelles, les artistes ont mis en garde contre sa stérilité pendant des décennies, comme l'a montré l'exposition de 2012 à la Hayward Gallery de Londres. Pour nous, l'invisible n'est pas nécessairement absent ou vide. Au contraire, l'invisible est plein d'une richesse obtenue en dehors de la vision, qu'elle soit perceptive ou imaginative, dont l'épuisement a rendu possible un éventail d'engagements multisensoriels et critiques avec le monde qui nous entoure.

Yves Klein (1928-1962) a libéré l'essence même de la peinture – ou ce qu'il appelait la sensibilité picturale – des limites des aspects formels du médium, permettant aux visiteurs de son exposition de 1958 à la Galerie Iris Clert à Paris d'embrasser son énergie immatérielle directement et avec immédiateté. Sur un mode plus sinistre, Air (2003) de la Mexicaine Teresa Margolles nous plonge dans un air humidifié par l'eau utilisée pour nettoyer les corps assassinés avant autopsie. Pour l'artiste, aucune image graphique ne peut être plus puissante que les traces particulaires des morts pour parler de la violence à laquelle les victimes ont été confrontées. L'invisible renforce également nos sens de manière significative. Chris Burden (1946-2015) l’a testé en se rendant invisible aux yeux des spectateurs lors de sa performance de longue durée White Light/White Heat (8 février-1er mars 1975) à la Ronald Feldman Gallery de New York. N'ayant rien d'intéressant à regarder, les spectateurs étaient contraints de « faire l'expérience de l'art par d'autres moyens que simplement regarder, et relier conceptuellement la visibilité à l'invisibilité » (Stiles 2007).

Dressing Bodies, Dressing Spaces: Challenges and New Approaches to Textiles and Adornment (300-1600) / Habiller le corps, Habiller l’espace: Enjeux et approches aux textiles et à l'adornement (300- 1600)

Elizabeth Dospel Williams 1, Patricia Blessing 2, Eiren Shea 3, Maximilien Durand 4

Dumbarton Oaks - Washington, Dc (United States), 2 Princeton University (United States), 3 Grinnell College - Grinnell, Iowa (United States), 3Musée Du Louvre - Paris, France (France)

Sujet en anglais / Topic in english

Holistic consideration of the interrelationships of pre- and early modern bodies and spaces across Eurasia (300—1600) has been limited by conceptual frameworks divided into geographic, temporal, and methodological specialization. Thus, work on dress has dealt with personal appearance, highlighting questions about identity through clothing, jewelry, and accessories. Likewise, scholarship on interior decoration has considered the relationship of ephemeral design elements to permanent architectural forms through function and placement. Further, scholarship on the body’s presence in space has tended to work with movement, placement, and perception of abstracted bodies, rather than concrete figures weighed down by clothing and jewels.

These approaches, divided largely by medium, reflect art historiographical biases and technical specializations which silo, on the one hand, experts in textiles (weaving), jewelry (metalwork), and sculpture (architecture), or of art historians, archaeologists, and architectural historians, on the other. Similar divisions of body and interior also occur in the broader perspective of material culture theory, while modernist aesthetics have further obscured the interrelatedness of human form and spatial environment. Museum contexts reinforce this divide: objects tend to be isolated within cases, leading to a view of these pieces as context-free, while the museumification of historical spaces means that attendant furnishings are often displayed in special exhibition spaces, whereas historical rooms lie empty.

The proposed panel considers adorned human bodies in their spatial environments to forge new theoretical frameworks drawn from decorative arts historiography, ornament studies, sensory archaeology, anthropology, and material spatiality. An intermedial approach is essential, such as advocated in Luke Lavan and Ellen Swift’s (2009) work on late antique dress and interior decoration and in Jonathan Hay’s (2010) explorations of the somatic experiences of surfaces in early modern Chinese decorative arts objects. Recent efforts to draw together diverse Eurasian experiences of dress and furnishing textiles include a conference on medieval wearables at the Bard Graduate Center (2022) and a panel on embodied movement and interior decoration at the ICMS-Kalamazoo (2023).