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ARTECHNE – Technique in the Arts, 1500-1950


12 May 2016
15:00 - 17:00
Drift 27, Utrecht – Tielezaal / Room 1.25 (University Library City Centre)

Technical Art History Colloquium: Cennino Cennini’s Libro dell’Arte

The newly initiated Technical Art History Colloquium is organised by prof. dr. Sven Dupré (Utrecht University and University of Amsterdam, PI ERC ARTECHNE) and dr. Arjan de Koomen (University of Amsterdam, Department of Art History, Coordinator MA Technical Art History). Monthly meetings take place on Thursdays, alternately in Utrecht and Amsterdam. In the third edition of the Technical Art History Colloquium, Lara Broecke and Victor Schmidt (Utrecht University) will give presentations about Cennino Cennini’s Libro dell’Arte. Lara Broecke is paintings conservator, artist and translator of Cennini’s book.

Teasing the Meaning from Cennini by Translation
Lara Broecke (Paintings conservator, artist and translator of Cennini’s Il Libro dell’Arte, Fourqueux, France).

The process of making a new translation of Cennino Cennini’s well-known early 15th century treatise, Il Libro dell’Arte, into English teased new meanings from the text. The discipline of translation entailed exceptionally careful attention to the vocabulary and forms of expression used by the writer and required that conclusions be drawn about his intentions, where simply editing would not. Many dilemmas and difficulties had to be resolved along the way, but the painstaking work brought rewards in the uncovering of hitherto unnoticed implications in the text, affecting our understanding of Cennini as a man, a writer and an artist.

Theoretical and Historiographical Notions in Cennini’s Libro dell’Arte
Victor Schmidt (Associate professor, Department of History and Art History, Utrecht University).

Cennino Cennini’s Libro dell’Arte is not just a collection of recipes. It also contains a number of terms and concepts relating to painting and its history, some of which were recorded in writing for the first time. In his talk, Schmidt will discuss a few of these in the very first chapter of the Libro dell’Arte, namely:
– The origins of human occupations following the expulsion from Paradise;
– The ‘definition’ of painting;
– Cennini’s characterization of Giotto.

Download the programme as PDF here.
The format of the colloquium is open, but there will always be substantial time for audience discussion. All those interested are welcome (admission free). For more information, please contact j.briggeman@uu.nl.