Summer Term 2020 at The Courtauld – Academic highlights - The Courtauld Institute of Art

Summer Term 2020 at The Courtauld – Academic highlights

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Summer Term 2020 at The Courtauld – Academic highlights

Despite the difficult circumstances, the 2020 Summer Term at The Courtauld has seen significant awards to our faculty members, the publication of two new books and the successful completion of two PhDs.


Academic awards

The Gerda Henkel Foundation – Dr Robin Schuldenfrei

Dr Robin Schuldenfrei, Katja and Nicolai Tangen Senior Lecturer in 20th-century Modernism, has been awarded a twelve-month research scholarship for her next book project, Modernism and Migration: Materiality between Europe and America, 1930-1960. This inter-disciplinary project examines the materiality of modernism in art, architecture and design and proposes that modernism, as we know it today, could only coalesce after a period of international mobility; a process of exile, emigration and resettlement from continental Europe to Great Britain and America, in the interwar, wartime, and post-war period. Robin will take up this role in the 2020-21 academic year.

Getty Museum Scholar Award – Dr Guido Rebecchini

Dr Guido Rebecchini, Senior Lecturer in Sixteenth-Century Southern European Art, will be spending next summer (2021) at the Getty Museum in Los Angeles. While at the Getty, he will work as co-curator with Julian Brooks and Davide Gasparotto in preparation for an exhibition on Parmigianino, due to take place in 2022 and write an essay for the catalogue.

New books

Stone Fidelity book coverDr Jessica Barker, Lecturer in Medieval Art History – Stone Fidelity: Marriage and Emotion in Medieval Tomb Sculpture

Medieval tombs often depict husband and wife lying side-by-side, and hand in hand, immortalised in elegantly carved stone: what Philip Larkin’s poem An Arundel Tomb later described as their “stone fidelity”.

This first full account of the “double tomb” places its rich tradition in dialogue with powerful discourses of gender, marriage, politics and emotion during the Middle Ages. As well as offering new interpretations of some of the most famous medieval tombs, such as those found in Westminster Abbey and Canterbury Cathedral, it draws attention to a host of lesser-known memorials from throughout Europe, providing an innovative vantage point from which to reconsider the material culture of medieval marriage. Setting these twin effigies alongside wedding rings and dresses as the agents of matrimonial ritual and embodied symbolism, the author presents the “double tomb” as far more than mere romantic sentiment. Rather, it reveals the careful artifice beneath their seductive emotional surfaces: the artistic, religious, political and legal agendas underlying the medieval rhetoric of married love.

Find out more information.

Dr Robin Schuldenfrei, Katja and Nicolai Tangen Senior Lecturer in 20th-century Modernism –  Iteration: Episodes in the Mediation of Art and Architecture

This edited volume considers the ways in which multiple stages, phases, or periods in an artistic or design process have served to arrive at the final artifact, with a focus on the meaning and use of the iteration. To contextualize iteration within artistic and architectural production, this collection of essays presents a range of close studies in art, architectural and design history, using archival and historiographical research, media theory, photography, material studies, and critical theory. It examines objects as unique yet mutable works by examining their antecedents, successive exemplars, and their afterlives—and thus their role as organizers or repositories of meaning. Key are the roles of writing, the use of media, and relationships between object, image, and reproduction. This volume asks how a closer look at iteration reveals new perspectives into the production of objects and the production of thought alike.

Written by an international team of contributors, offering a range of perspectives, it looks broadly at meaning and insight offered by the iteration—for processes of design, for historical research, and for the reception of creative works.

Find out more information


Congratulations to Costanza Beltrami and Albert Godycki who have been award PhDs this term.

Costanza Beltrami was awarded a PhD in April, supervised by Dr Tom Nickson. Her thesis, Juan Guas and Gothic Architecture in Late Medieval Spain: Collaborations, Networks, Geographies, was examined by Dr Zoe Opacic from Birkbeck, University of London, and Professor Javier Martínez de Aguirre, from Universidad Complutense de Madrid.

Albert Godycki has been awarded a PhD this month, supervised by Dr Joanna Woodall. The thesis, Strength and Sinews: ‘Haarlem Mannerism’ and the Emergence of a Dutch Body Politic, 1585-159, was examined by Dr Allison Stielau at UCL, and Dr Edward Wouk, from University of Manchester.

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