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February 7, 2019 | 4:30 p.m. - 5:30 p.m.
Category: Lecture
Location: Manoogian Hall #446 | Map
906 W. Warren
Detroit, MI 48201
Cost: Free
Audience: Current Graduate Students, Current Undergraduate Students, Faculty

Alice Isabella Sullivan, Ph.D., Lecturer, Department of History of Art, University of Michigan, will talk on "New Visual Expressions in Medieval Moldavia after 1453".

This talk is part of the CMLLC Colloquium series. Free and open to the public.

Abstract: In the decades after the fall of Constantinople in 1453, the principality of Moldavia—lying within the borders of north-eastern modern Romania and the Republic of Moldova—emerged as a Christian frontier at the crossroads of western European, Byzantine, Slavic, and Ottoman cultures. Contacts with neighboring regions resulted in the local assimilation of select elements from distinct visual traditions. This eclecticism with respect to sources is most evident in the painted and fortified Orthodox monastic churches of Moldavia built under the patronage of two rulers: Stephen III “the Great” (r. 1457-1504) and Peter RareĊŸ (r. 1527-1538; 1541-1546), Stephen’s illegitimate son and heir. In this talk, I examine the developments in monastic church architecture in Moldavia under the aegis of these two princes, who, through their artistic patronage, self-consciously reflected upon the past glory of Byzantium and their contemporary situation. I consider some of the modes of artistic transfer that contributed to the unprecedented visual forms of these Moldavian buildings, as well as the princely aspirations in the context of which they took shape. Then, I engage with the structuring of sacred space in the Moldavian churches and the ways in which the vast image cycles both inside and outside were carefully calibrated to enhance and give visual expression to the specific purpose of the part of the building onto which they were painted. 

For more information about this event, please contact Leonidas Pittos at 313-577-3002 or