CODART, Dutch and Flemish art in museums worldwide

New perspectives on Flemish illumination

Research Conference: 16 November - 18 November 2011

Information from the organizers, 12 September 2011



In 1959 Léon Delaissé organized an exhibition entitled La miniature flamande. Le mécénat de Philippe le Bon (The Flemish Miniature. The Patronage of Philip the Good). Seen in Brussels, Amsterdam and Paris, it was a ground-breaking initiative. Now, more than fifty years later, our knowledge of the illuminated manuscript in the Southern Netherlands during the Burgundian period has vastly increased, in large part thanks to new research techniques and topics. Traditional approaches such as connoisseurship and codicology have refined our understanding of the chronology and geographic distribution of manuscript production.

In recent decades, moreover, considerable attention has been directed towards historical contextualization – guild organization, actual working practices in the shop, and the complex relationship between word and image. The part played by the commissioner in the production, use and spread of illuminated books is hugely important. Attitudes to and the handling of the medieval parchment heritage in later centuries is also currently explored.

The Flemish Miniatures exhibition (Brussels-Paris, 2011-2012) provides the occasion for this colloquium. Its aim is to establish the current position vis-à-vis recent research results and the new perspectives they offer. Connections between illumination and panel painting, sculpture, engraving, woodcuts, stained glass and tapestry will be discussed. The intention is to achieve a fruitful interdisciplinary dialogue.

Supported by the Research Foundation Flanders (FWO) & the Fonds de la Recherche Scientifique (FNRS).