CVAC awarded £470 toward the running of the second research conversation day on 23 June 2017, this year entitled ‘Visual Culture of the Classical World at Durham’.
The day-long workshop, also supported by the Department of Archaeology and the Centre for Classical Reception at Durham, took place at St. Mary’s College. It was attended by 45 people including the speakers, and the audience included undergraduates, graduate students, alumni and staff, including a number from the library services. Twelve scholars from four departments of Durham (see programme, below) presented short talks on their research, with the aim of enhancing awareness of each other’s work and comparing approaches to various kinds of visual culture. The funding was spent on catering costs, covering a coffees and teas and lunch for all attendees.
The last day of the academic year, the day was a busy one for many, and a date earlier or just outside of term might suit the next research conversation day, if the event is to become a regular one in the calendar of CVAC. The day was well-received, especially by undergraduates who commented to the organiser on their enjoyment. The event was certainly successful in its aims of increasing awareness of the work of scholars on themes pertaining to the Classical world and fostering greater cooperation between departments, although that sort of impact is soft and slow, requiring more events of this nature. Additionally, the event created an opportunity to advertise CVAC to people inside and outside the university. The organisation of the papers was roughly chronological, leading from studies of the visual culture of the ancient world to the reception of Classical visual culture and the visual culture of Classical reception in the modern era. A final discussion touched on a gap: reception in the present day, in digital media (films and gaming, for example).
Programme of speakers
- Catherine Draycott (Archaeology): Art and landscapes of empire in Achaemenid Anatolia
- Eris Williams Reed (Classics and Ancient History): The environment as visual culture: examples from the Roman Near East
- Peter Heslin (Classics and Ancient History) – Public and private art in the Roman World
- Anna Leone (Archaeology): Statues and urban decorum in late antique North Africa
- Rebecca Usherwood (Classics and Ancient History): Scratching the surface
- Dame Rosemary Cramp (Archaeology): A late Roman or Medieval relief?
- Edmund Thomas (Classics and Ancient History) – Rethinking the “Baroque”, ancient and modern
- Marc Schachter (MLAC) – The illustrated Ass: Apuleius’ Metamorphoses from manuscript to print
- Stefano Cracolici (MLAC) – Aeneid 1819: a landscape avant-garde
- Tom Stammers (History) – Augustus and Cinna in the Bowes Museum: painting, politics and theatre at the fall of Napoleon
- Seren Nolan (Classics and Ancient History) – The Roman matrona in eighteenth-century visual culture
- Richard Hingley (Archaeology): Building Roman Britain; urbanism, militarism, industry and barbarity in Victorian imagery