New Publication: Microarchitectures médiévales

New Publication: Microarchitectures médiévales

 Jean-Marie Guillouët and Ambre Vilain (eds.), Microarchitectures médiévales: L'échelle à l'épreuve de la matière, Paris, INHA/Picard, 2018, 240 p., ISBN 978-2-7084-1042-8.

This collective work aims the re-evaluation of the forms and concepts of architecture and artistic creation in the Middle Ages. During this period of profound political and religious restructuration, the metamorphosis of European societies has been reflected in an architectural language. The vocabulary of architecture then spread on all kinds of materials and supports, but also on different scales, thanks to numerous exchanges and transfers between buildings, monumental decorations and the usual or devotional objects. This phenomenon of "architecture" gradually blurs the boundaries between architecture, image, and artefact, renewing the modes of addressing the spectator as well as the symbolic repertoire of mystery, authority and interiority.

Microarchitectures médiévales, the first major publication on the subject since the pioneering work of François Bucher, explores the technical and rhetorical processes of medieval microarchitecture in its broadest sense. In addition to the study of artistic monuments such as Gothic cathedrals and their sculptures or the inscriptions of the Alhambra Palace, this last one treated for the first time under the angle of microarchitecture, the collected contributions focus on devotional objects, models and illuminated manuscripts. An important part of the book is devoted to little-known objects, such as episcopal sticks, city seals, or the chivote, these church-formed tabernacles used in Orthodox liturgy.

By re-establishing the dialectical link that articulates miniature and gigantism in medieval thought, the essays in this book renew in depth the thinking of modern and contemporary concepts of scale, value and sublime.

This bilingual and richly illustrated volume contains 15 papers (8 in French, 7 in English).

The authors: Sabine Berger, Paul Binski, Clément Blanc-Riehl, James Alexander Cameron, Sophie Cloart-Pawlak, Alexander Collins, Julian Gardner, Jean-Marie Guillouët, Javier Ibáñez Fernández, Ethan Matt Kavaler, Farah Makki, Anita Paolicchi, Anne-Orange Poilpré, Matthew James Sillence, Achim Timmermann, Frédéric Tixier, Ambre Vilain, Arturo Zaragozá Catalán.

The editors: Jean-Marie Guillouët is a specialist in flamboyant Gothic microarchitecture, artistic transfers in the Gothic period and the socio-cultural history of the technical gesture. He is a lecturer in art history at the University of Nantes.

Ambre Vilain is sigillographer and teaches medieval art history at the University of Nantes. Her thesis, Imago Urbis: Les sceaux de ville au Moyen Âge, has been published in June 2018 (INHA/CTHS).