1st Workshop of the ‘Mediterranean Palimpsests: Connecting the Art and Architectural Histories of Medieval and Early Modern Cities’

Monday, May 7, 2018

The first of a series of three workshops of the Mediterranean Palimpsests project will take place from 7 to 16 May 2018 in Nicosia. This workshop will establish group cohesion and set the tone for the constructive exchange of ideas and collaborative work. The schedule combines seminar discussions of key concepts from the readings (spatial scale, the arts as cultural resource, memory, authenticity, contestation, visualization, reception, heritage and identity) with focused site visits, beginning with Nicosia and continuing to other key sites in Cyprus. The historic capital of the island, with its physical division between the Greek Cypriot South and the Turkish Cypriot North, is an ideal starting point for the group’s exploration of the ways that art and architecture are perceived, represented and experienced in contemporary contested urban landscapes. Cyprus reminds us always of the tension of medieval history and heritage as experienced in the contemporary moment. Mediterranean Palimpsests focuses on the layered art histories of medieval Mediterranean cities as the basis for scholarly connections that challenge and move beyond the boundaries of modern historiographies, national narratives, and contemporary socioeconomic realities. Set in a region where issues of cultural heritage and identity are currently highly contested, the proposed project identifies the critical role of art history in explaining the past and understanding its relevance for the present as well as for the future.