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Thursday, October 10, 2019 at 4:30pm
Goldwin Smith Hall, G22
232 East Ave, Central Campus
Guest Speaker Aden Kumler will present “The gift of screws”: material un-making in the Middle Ages.
Much recent work on materials and “materiality” in the Middle Ages has focused on the aesthetic and hermeneutic efficacy of materials and celebrated the entanglement of the human and the non-human. The skillful and laborious destructioninvolved in the pragmatic and conceptual handlings of materials has received comparatively less attention. Examining a selection of European medieval objects and texts as an archive of destructive acts of un-making, in this talk I explore how the forceful, even violent, working of materials involved in the making of works of art powerfully shaped medieval Christian conceptions of the economy of salvation.
Aden Kumler is Associate Professor of Art History and Romance Languages & Literatures at the University of Chicago. In addition to essays treating a range of issues in the history of medieval material and visual culture, she is the author of Translating Truth: Ambitious Images and Religious Knowledge in Late Medieval France and England(Yale University Press, 2011).