Location: Bard Graduate Center, 38 West 86th St, New York, NY 10024.
Organizers: Andrew Morrall (BGC, New York) and Mark A. Meadow (University of California, Santa Barbara).
Prudence, Techne, and the Practice of Good Governance in the Early Modern Kunstkammer
In 1565, Leo Quiccheberg wrote a brief dedication to Emperor Maximilian II, recommending his brother Samuel Quiccheberg’s treatise on collecting, the Inscriptiones vel tituli Theatri amplissimi. By reading Samuel’s book, the ruler would learn “… what, from founding a theater of this sort, might be gained for Your Majesty’s prudentia from such a Kunst und Wunderkammer.” Written at the moment when the Habsburgs, Wittelsbachs, and other princely houses were first establishing collections as state institutions, this is among the earliest texts to connect museums with the ability to govern wisely and effectively. This conference explores the intertwined histories and philosophies of governance, techne, and collecting in the early-modern period. In particular, speakers will examine how the intersection of these three realms was informed by a newly pragmatic sensibility.
9:30 Peter N. Miller, Bard Graduate Center: Welcome
Andrew Morrall, Bard Graduate Center, Mark A. Meadow, University of California, Santa Barbara: Introduction
Texts/Theory/Codification of Ideas
9:50 am Mark A. Meadow, University of California, Santa Barbara: Quanta prudentia et usus administrandæ reipublicæ: Mylaeus and Quiccheberg on the Utility of Techne
10:30 am Vera Keller, University of Oregon: Jakob Bornitz and the Cameralists’ Kunstkammer
11:10 am Coffee Break
11:30 am Alessandra Russo, CoIumbia University: An Indestructible “Indian World” of Artists: Art, Prudence, and Desire in Bartolomé de las Casas’s Apologetic History
12:10 pm Lunch Break
Collections and Objects
1:30 pm Jessica Keating, Carleton College: Fruits of the Flesh: Abundance and Prudence in the Collection of Holy Roman Emperor Rudolf II
2:10 pm Andrew Morrall, Bard Graduate Center: “For practical utility [and] noble meditations”: Craft, Techne, and the Pursuit of Virtue in the Early Modern Kunstkammer
2:50 pm Coffee Break
Techne and Practice
3:10 pm Tina Asmussen, ETH Zurich: Mining Investment and Antiquarian Practices in Late Sixteenth-Century Basel
3:50 pm Ana Matisse Donefer-Hickie, The Metropolitan Museum of Art: The Noble Art: Alchemy at Court
Comment and Roundtable
4:30 pm Pamela H. Smith, Columbia University: Comment
5:15 pm Reception
Organizer: Andrew Morrall, Professor, Bard Graduate Center, 38 West 86th St, New York, NY 10024. tel: 212- 501-3042