Monthly Archives: June 2013

Call for Papers: “Romantic Connections”

“Romantic Connections”
NASSR supernumerary conference, supported by BARS, GER, and JAER
University of Tokyo, June 13–15, 2014

Plenary speakers:

Christoph Bode (LMU Munich)
James Chandler (University of Chicago)
Angela Esterhammer (University of Toronto)
Peter Kitson (University of East Anglia)
Jonathan Lamb (Vanderbilt University)
Kiyoshi Nishiyama (Waseda University)

The organising committee invites submissions for an international conference on “Romantic Connections” at the University of Tokyo in June 2014.

Call for Papers – Romantic Connections

The deadline for submissions is November 30, 2013.

This unique event will bring together four scholarly societies from three continents: it is a supernumerary conference of the North American Society for the Study of Romanticism (NASSR), also supported by the British Association for Romantic Studies (BARS), the German Society for English Romanticism (GER), and the Japan Association of English Romanticism (JAER).

More information is available on the conference website:

‘Things’ seminar

The Things: Early Modern Material Cultures seminar series will meet for the last time this term on Tuesday 11th June at 12.30pm in room SG1 in the Alison Richard building.  The topic will be ‘Painted Things’: Dr Matthew Hunter (McGill University) will discuss ‘Did Joshua Reynolds Paint his Pictures?’ and Professor Mark Hallet (Paul Mellon Centre) will speak on ‘Point Counter Point: Joshua Reynolds, Portraiture and late Eighteenth-Century Exhibition Culture’. All are welcome to attend.


Matthew Hunter. In May 1773, an open letter to London’s Morning Chronicle lodged a peculiar complaint with Sir Joshua Reynolds. Pigmented ooze—paint—had, in the view of this critic, come to bear in upon British art with undue, defacing force. The problem followed from conceptualizing artistic identity through an excessively literal translation of French Peintre as “Painter, and the materials which ingenious persons of that denomination make use of to display their talents, we have, from that word, calledpaint, which in French is named coleurs.” Closer to the liberal art actually practiced and promoted by Reynolds, this anonymous critic proposed, sculptors and architects could offer useful counter-models: “Why not like these have a peculiar name, Sir Joshua, for your very profession? Why not like these take up at once your classic name? Why not Pictor?” Situated within the rich, period discourse and extensive, modern documentation of Reynolds’s chemical experiments, this paper aims to take theMorning Chronicle’s complaint seriously. It considers the ways in which Reynolds and his contemporaries understood interfaces between paint and image, while exploring the broader stakes (then as now) of apprehending the President’s temporally-evolving chemical works as “pictures.”

Mark Hallett. This talk, which will focus on the portraits submitted by Joshua Reynolds to the annual Royal Academy displays of the 1780s, explores the workings of the painted object within the crowded, ephemeral and spectacular exhibition displays characteristic of the late eighteenth century. Particular attention will be devoted to the ways in which, within the Academy’s Great Room, Reynolds’s individual portraits of women were played off against each other and against portraits of male subjects, and thereby became part of an extended and highly intriguing form of visual dialogue and counterpoint.