Carolyn Connor shows here that Byzantine ivory carvings--often assumed to have been monochromatic--were originally brightly colored. Most ivories today show no obvious traces of paint or stain, and many scholars believe that the Byzantines preferred the aesthetic of ivory's natural, creamy color. However, Connor's close examination of one hundred Late Antique and Byzantine ivories reveals that artists frequently colored ivories in bright hues of red, blue, green, and gold.
Intrigued by barely visible traces of paint or stain, Connor subjected such ivory objects as boxes, plaques, and book covers to scientific analysis. Under the microscope, she saw that their surfaces were once ablaze with color, while tests identified the actual pigments. Her findings, presented here, demonstrate that the ivories were colored and that the paint or stain--which does not adhere well to the surface of ivory--either wore off or was cleaned away. She draws on the work of archaeologists, classicists, historians, and art historians to show that this color was almost certainly original and not, as many scholars have assumed, a medieval or later addition. The author also locates Byzantine ivories within a long tradition of colored ivory going back, for example, to a painted chest found in the tomb of the Egyptian boy-king Tutankhamen. Connor's close study and contextualizing of a significant group of ivories will reshape our thinking about color, culture, and art.
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Carolyn L. Connor is Assistant Professor of Classics at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She is the author of Art and Miracles in Medieval Byzantium (Princeton).Review:
"The debate about whether medieval ivories might originally have been coloured has been a long-running one. Since
Winckelmann, the ideal of purity has been intrinsic to the appreciation of much sculpture, above all to the study of ivory, which
has a colour of its own and a beauty of material appreciated for its grain and gloss. Carolyn Connor's book, a survey of the
results of her Byzantine ivories project, deals with the issue conclusively. She proves finally that late antique and Byzantine
ivories were painted and gilded and thus effectively silences this dispute . . . Connor's book is significant in answering the
polychromy question. It provides the first important step towards a reassessment of the aesthetics of Byzantine colour
perception and reveals the need for much more analysis and discussion."--Burlington Magazine
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Descrizione libro Princeton University Press, 1998. Hardcover. Condizione libro: New. book. Codice libro della libreria 0691048185
Descrizione libro Condizione libro: Brand New. Book Condition: Brand New. Codice libro della libreria 97806910481851.0
Descrizione libro Princeton University Press, 1998. Hardcover. Condizione libro: New. Codice libro della libreria P110691048185
Descrizione libro Princeton University Press, Princeton, 1998. leg.ed. sopracop.fig.a col. Condizione libro: NUOVO. cm.20x26, pp.XII,129, 16 tavv.a col.e 12 ill.bn.ft., Princeton, Princeton University Press 1998, cm.20x26, pp.XII,129, 16 tavv.a col.e 12 ill.bn.ft., leg.ed. sopracop.fig.a col. Ediz.in lingua inglese. Codice libro della libreria 63102
Descrizione libro Princeton University Press, 1998. Hardcover. Condizione libro: New. Codice libro della libreria DADAX0691048185
Descrizione libro Princeton Univ Pr, 1998. Hardcover. Condizione libro: Brand New. illustrated edition. 164 pages. 10.75x8.00x0.75 inches. In Stock. Codice libro della libreria zk0691048185