27 Oct 2006 9:00am - 5:00pm CRASSH



Grace Brockington (Faculty of English, Cambridge)

Linda Goddard (Department of History of Art, Cambridge)


In nineteenth- and early twentieth-century Britain, the bonds between the 'sister arts' were both strong and complicated. Practitioners like Dante Gabriel Rossetti, William Morris and Maurice Maeterlinck worked to establish connections between various art forms, whether poetry, painting or theatre. They collaborated with other artists and writers and shared sources of inspiration, but the nature of their partnerships and the degree of affinity between word and image varied considerably. Similarly, while the growth of literary journals, serialised novels and caricature brought illustrated narratives to a wider readership, the images did not always relate explicitly to the text in question, and could function as independent 'visual narratives'. For Symbolists like Maeterlinck, however, theatre suggested a solution to these tensions by uniting all art forms on the stage.


In conjunction with two exhibitions at the Fitzwilliam Museum, 'Literary Circles: Artist, author, word and image in Britain 1800-1920' (Mellon Gallery, 17 October 2006 to 30 December 2006) and 'Chasing Happiness: Maurice Maeterlinck, The Blue Bird and England' (Shiba Gallery, 3 October 2006 to 7 January 2007), this interdisciplinary study day will investigate the multiple ways in which text and image inform, or work in tension with, each other. A series of informal presentations and discussions will address themes related to the exhibitions, ranging from popular illustration to the private press, literary-artistic collaborations, stage design, photography, performance and caricature. Speakers include Caroline Arscott (Courtauld Institute of Art), Drew Milne (University of Cambridge), Jane Munro (Fitzwilliam Museum), Cathy Phillips (University of Cambridge) and Paul Stirton (University of Glasgow).


Tel: +44 1223 766886
Email enquiries@crassh.cam.ac.uk