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Title: Flemish sculpture art and manufacture c. 1600-1750
Author: Lock, L. E.
Awarding Body: University College London (University of London)
Current Institution: University College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 2008
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This thesis attempts to shed light on the creative and production processes in a field that has recently been termed "the greatest unknown story in the history of Western European art" (Jeffrey Muller, 2006). In the context of 17th-century Antwerpen solely being appreciated for three great painters (Rubens, Van Dyck, Jordaens) and its sculpture always being "explained" as copying Bernini's and Algardi's Italian models, it is not surprising that this field has been neglected. In fact, its study has been minimal since World War II. And until then documentary identification and attribution were the only preoccupations of its historians. For the purposes of the thesis, Flemish sculpture will roughly be taken as that produced in the former Southern Netherlands, at first under Spanish, then under Austrian dominion (excluding independent Liege), and investigated in the time from Rubens's return to Antwerpen in 1608 to the end of its heyday by the middle of the eighteenth century. Thus within this huge field, of which an estimated 25,000 to 30,000 sculptures and sculptors' drawings have survived, the present study takes a different methodological approach. Using well-documented cases and especially those cases for which three or more different stages in the design and production are extant (preparatory drawing, preparatory terracotta model and the work as executed in wood or marble), it analyses in a necessarily empirical and exemplary way the workings of the sculpture production: the commissioning process the project from the drawn sketch to the finished model the manufacture from the raw materials to the delivery. To a certain extent, this thesis uses the methodology of the seminal study by Jennifer Montagu, Roman Baroque Sculpture, The Industry of Art (1989). However, around this skeleton, certain complementary situations are also investigated, in particular the effects of collaborations between sculptors and an architect, a painter, a painter-architect or a cabinet maker. The study concludes with a discussion of the social standing of Low Countries sculptors and their trade between art and manufacture.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available