IMC Leeds 2016: Call for Papers

The Long Lives of Medieval Art and Architecture

23rd International Medieval Congress, Leeds, 4-7 July 2016
Submission Deadline: 1 September 2015
Organizer: Amanda Dotseth (Courtauld Institute of Art; Instituto de Historia CSIC-Madrid)

The way in which we access and analyze medieval buildings and the objects contained therein is deeply inflected by meaningful events in their long lives. Over time, the circumstances of creation and function; location, movement, modification and restoration; and styles of valorization leave indelible, if not always visible, marks. To all this, we might add yet another layer of circumstances influential to current interpretation: that deposited by the creative act of writing and rewriting the history of art and architecture. Historians, too, make their marks. We might, therefore, consider the telling of a building’s or object’s life as moving beyond biography to hagiography, in which over time material things are activated and set apart by their “gesta.”

Pivoting from histories that privilege a presumed original state, this pair of sessions, dedicated to buildings and to objects respectively, seeks papers on the long lives of medieval art. The organizer invites contributions that highlight the utility of diachronic analysis and defy the chronological or geographic boundaries set by academic discipline. In focusing on any point or points in an artwork’s timeline, historiographically conscious studies are welcomed, as are those which diagnose changes in understanding in order to shed light on “issues of time, rupture, and continuity,” as Caroline Bruzelius put it.

These AVISTA-sponsored sessions are organized in conjunction with sessions dedicated to the long life of medieval objects to be held at the 51st Annual Congress on Medieval Studies at Kalamazoo, MI, 12-15 May 2016. Therefore, submissions that advance the interdisciplinary mission of AVISTA by elaborating the technology of medieval buildings, manuscripts, sculpture, and metalwork are particularly encouraged.

Please submit a 500-word abstract to Amanda W. Dotseth at by 1 September. These sessions, together with their parallel sessions at Kalamazoo, anticipate a volume on the Long Lives of Medieval Art and Architecture as part of AVISTA Studies in the History of Medieval Science, Technology and Art, published with Ashgate Press. For more information see

AVISTA Membership:
Session participants are encouraged to join The Association Villard de Honnecourt for the Interdisciplinary Study of Technology, Science, and Art. For more information see our membership page.

AVISTA Travel Grant:
The Society is also pleased to offer up to two $500 grants-in-aid to graduate students or independent scholars to defray costs of attending. Application for one of these grants consists of a 300-word statement of need and CV which should be submitted together with the paper abstract to Amanda W. Dotseth at

Leave a Reply

Post Navigation