Discovering the Italian Trecento in the Nineteenth Century

Event Date: 
15 Nov 2013 to 16 Nov 2013

March and November 2013, London and Venice

The growing interest in the early Italian Renaissance during the course of the ‘long’ nineteenth century has, in recent years, become a major and developing area of study, for students of both the Renaissance itself and the nineteenth century. These two conferences on the Italian trecento aim to take these studies further by concentrating on the ‘discovery’ of late medieval and early Renaissance Italy, the age of Dante and Petrarch, Giotto and the Pisani.

The conferences will cover such themes as the ways in which the concept of the ‘primitive’ changed during the nineteenth century, the nineteenth-century’s interpretation of the age of the Italian city states and the way in which this period became an inspiration for the fine and applied arts and architecture of the nineteenth century.

The conferences will be truly interdisciplinary and international - the impact of the Italian trecento went beyond Europe. Contributions are invited from the fields of history and art history, Italian language and literature, research in the early Renaissance as well as of the nineteenth century itself. It is expected that the papers will be published.

The conferences will be held on Friday and Saturday, March 1 & 2, 2013 in London at the National Gallery and the Wallace Collection and on Friday and Saturday, November 15 & 16, 2013 in Venice.  It will be possible to attend either or both of these.

The conferences are being organised by the Collecting and Display Seminar Group at the Institute of Historical Research and John Law, Swansea University in collaboration with the National Gallery, the Wallace Collection and the University of Warwick.

Proposed Topics include:

The history of trecento Italy and its interpretation in the 19th century

 Art criticism  in the 19th century and its understanding of the Italian trecento

 Collecting and connoisseurship: including early manuscripts, sculpture, ivories and the decorative arts

Education, in terms of manuals on design, drawing, painting and cast  collections

Literature and its translation

Tourism, travel guides, diaries

Recreating the trencento  in the arts and its influence on 19th century sculpture, painting, architecture and the decorative arts

The rediscovery of early Renaissance artistic techniques

Issues of conservation,  restoration and display arising from  research into the trecento.

The influence of the trecento on the 19th century - for example on social and religious thought

The influence of the trecento on Romantic composers

Please send a 300-word summary of your proposal for a 25-minute presentation to either of the convenors by 30th November, 2012, heading your proposal Trecento. Please indicate if you are  only able to attend either the London or the Venice session.

Our intention is to offer speakers all in-conference expenses (not including accommodation). We can endorse speaker’s individual applications for outside funding. Furthermore we hope to contribute to some travel expenses. 

John Law                                                                                            Adriana Turpin

Swansea University                                                                         Collecting & Display