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GDS Colloquium Series: Winckelmann and the Roman Art Market

Suzanne Marchand, European Intellectual History and Comparative Literature, LSU
Friday, March 24, 2017
1:00-3:00 PM
3308 Conference Room Modern Languages Building Map
All too often the career of J. J. Winckelmann has been isolated from the wider context which made his career possible: the libertine culture of aristocratic neo-classicism which spread from Italy to France, England, and the Germanies in the eighteenth century and, more importantly, the booming Roman art market which served the Grand Tour. Winckelmann, who had seen almost nothing but Baroque (and medieval) art before arriving in Rome, spent most of his first years in Rome among artists and restorers, who taught him a great deal about the technicalities of classical art. Winckelmann befriended many restorers—including Rome’s most successful, Bartholomeo Cavaceppi—as well as art dealers, men for whom the discernment of styles, authenticity, and iconography were professional and vital requirements. We may not ever know just how much Winckelmann learned from the Roman makers and collectors of casts, copies, and forgeries, or from the dealers, but it was certainly a significant amount. Finally, we need to see Winckelmann’s work too in the context of mercantile attempts to make ‘national’ luxury goods salable on wider European and world markets; the porcelain industry, with its emphasis on ‘whiteness,’ is especially relevant to the making of neoclassical taste.

For a copy of the paper, please contact Julia Hell at

Free and open to the Public.
Building: Modern Languages Building
Event Type: Lecture / Discussion
Tags: German, Graduate, History, Lecture
Source: Happening @ Michigan from Germanic Languages & Literatures, Department of History