Collecting East and West
Florence, Italy, 25 to 29 June 2009
Collections usually concentrate on what is rare and hard to come by. This rarity may refer to the age or the material of the collected objects but frequently is a condition resulting from the object’s exotic origins. Merchants, explorers, warriors, and pirates travelled widely and we can look back at a long history of imported treasures in the collections of European princes; for example porcelain in the fifteenth century and objects from the New World from the early sixteenth century onwards. Weapons from the Near East formed an important part of any princely Armoury north and south of the Alps.
This conference means to look at imported objects, whether artworks, antiquities, plants, or books, in collections in Europe and elsewhere. The mechanisms of import and distribution of the objects will be addressed, and so will be the contribution collections of such pieces made towards improving the knowledge about foreign countries and people. Given that East and West are relative to where the collector and the collection are based, we hope to receive proposals dealing with European and non-European collections of exotic objects. We look forward to finding out more about why such objects were and are attractive to collectors and hope that the discussion of the papers will also lead to the exploration of the term ‘exotic’ itself. Please send your proposal of 250 words to firstname.lastname@example.org on
or before 31 October 2008.
Collecting & Display (100BC to AD1700)
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