Conrad on Film – The Secret Agent

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Joseph Conrad’s Edwardian novel The Secret Agent (1907) is currently being serialized on BBC television, starring Toby Jones and Vicky McClure. Conrad, as previous events listed here have shown, has been adapted multiple times for stage, screen and radio. The last BBC adaptation of The Secret Agent was, in fact, as recent as 1992.

If you know of any other adaptations of Edwardian texts that we have missed this summer, please do let us know!

Ten Edwardian Paintings at the Yale Center for British Art

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Spencer Gore, Ballet Scene from ‘On the Sands’, 1910, Yale Center for British Art

The Yale Center for British Art – the largest collection of British art outside the UK – reopened this week after a sixteen-month building conservation project. The re-installation of the collection tells the story of British art from the sixteenth century to the present day, while a special exhibition focuses on the collection of the late Rhoda Pritzker, who purchased a wide range of twentieth-century paintings and sculpture. Several works from the long Edwardian era can currently be seen in the galleries, including the ten images listed below:

  1. Spencer Gore, Ballet Scene from ‘On the Sands’, 1910
  2. Walter Sickert, Carolina dell’Acqua, 1903-4
  3. Duncan Grant, Vanessa Bell at her Easel, 1914
  4. Augustus John, Dorelia in the Garden at Alderney Manor, Dorset, c.1911
  5. Roger Fry, The Artist’s Garden at Durbins, Guildford, c.1915
  6. Alfred Munnings, Gypsy Life — The Hop Pickers, 1913
  7. Frank Brangwyn, Departure of the Bucintoro, 1910
  8. Charles Ginner, Design for Tiger Hunting Mural in the Cabaret Theatre Club, 1912
  9. Gwen John, Study of a Nun, Seated at a Table, c.1915
  10. Spencer Gore, Cambrian Road, Richmond, 1914

 

CFP: Modernity and the Shock of the Ancient

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Edwardian scholars may be interested in the following CFP:

Modernity and the Shock of the Ancient:
The Reception of Antiquity in the Late 19th and Early 20th Century
June 10th, 2016, Ashmolean Museum, Oxford.

Two personalities fought for possession of his soul, and he could not always keep back the lower of the two. They interpenetrated…something very, very old projected upon a modern screen.    (Algernon Blackwood,  The Wave: An Egyptian Aftermath, 1916)

The ancient world was vital to what it meant to be ‘modern’ at the turn of the last century. Yet antique reception in this period is vastly understudied in all areas except that of classical Greece and Rome. At a time when the looting or wholesale destruction of non Graeco­-Roman ancient sites is creating new public interest in their importance to modern cultures around the world, it is crucial that this narrow picture is reconsidered.

We invite abstracts for a one -day interdisciplinary conference at the Ashmolean Museum on June 10th, 2016.  This conference will re-­evaluate the reception of the ancient past in the late 19th and early 20th century, and its relation to constructions of ‘modernity’.  It will explore the reception of a geographically diverse antiquity – from Greece and Rome to Egypt, Mesopotamia and East Asia – in a variety of spheres including literature, public art and architecture, museum exhibitions, cinema, and consumer goods. As a new century began, the ‘ancient’ was signalling the ‘modern’ in both popular and high avant-garde culture, and was harnessed to a range of (often opposing) political agendas. In the process, a ‘new’ antiquity was born, the study of which illuminates what it means to be both ‘modern’ and ‘Western’, today as much as in the early 20t​h century. Continue reading

Schedule: ‘To show a foreigner England’: Englishness and the Edwardian Landscape

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As noted below, registration is now open for our April 11th symposium, ‘To show a foreigner England: Englishness and the Edwardian Landscape’, organised in association with the Royal West of England Academy in Bristol and sponsored by the Paul Mellon Centre. We look forward to seeing you there on what promises to be a fascinating day. The schedule for the day is as follows:

10.30-11.00: Registration

11.00-11.15: Short introduction

11.15-12.00: Exhibition viewing, with tour by curator Gwen Yarker

12.00-1.00: Lunch

1.00-3.00: Papers

David Matless (University of Nottingham): Regions of Englishness

Jessica Feather (Paul Mellon Centre): Collecting Watercolour in Edwardian England: Landscape and Englishness

Bill Greenslade (University of the West of England): Edwardian Afterlives: Thomas Hardy and Wessex

3.00-3.30: Break

3.30-4.30: Roundtable discussion, with introduction by Ysanne Holt

To show a foreigner England: Englishness and the Edwardian Landscape

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We are pleased to announce that registration is now open for our April 11th symposium, ‘To show a foreigner England: Englishness and the Edwardian Landscape’, organised in association with the Royal West of England Academy in Bristol. Tickets cost a mere £6.00, and include a light lunch. The day will start at 10.30 and run until  4.30. Speakers include Professor David Matless (author of Landscape and Englishness) and Professor Ysanne Holt (author of British Artists and the Modernist Landscape). There will also be an exhibition tour with the curator, Gwen Yarker.

This one-day symposium – coinciding with Inquisitive Eyes: Slade Painters in Edwardian Wessex – takes as its starting point the following quotation from E.M. Forster’s novel Howard’s End (1910),

If one wanted to show a foreigner England, perhaps the wisest course would be to take him to the final section of the Purbeck Hills, and stand him on their summit, a few miles to the east of Corfe. Then system after system of our island would roll together under his feet.

Forster’s comment suggests that the rolling hills of the South West should be taken as a synecdoche for England. Taking a cue from this idea – but expanding the discussion to include other regions also – the symposium will address a range of important questions: where was Englishness located at the turn of the century, and why? What made a landscape especially English, or distinctly not-English? What role did artist’s colonies play in understanding and promoting particular landscapes in the national consciousness? How important was landscape to the development of modern art in England?

If you have any questions, please e-mail us at edwardianculture@hotmail.co.uk

 

PhD scholarship on Literature c.1914

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The poet Edward Thomas c.1905

Emerging Edwardian scholars may be interested in the following:

Vice Chancellor’s Scholarship Award, Liverpool Hope University

Research Supervisors: Dr Guy Cuthbertson and Associate Professor William Blazek

Research Topic: The Literature of the First World War

Closing Date: 14 March 2016

The successful candidate will be supervised by Dr Guy Cuthbertson and Associate Professor William Blazek, both of whom have published widely in the field of First World War literature.  They will consider proposals on any aspect of First World War literature, but their own research has been focused on the literature of Britain and the USA.  A focus on Wilfred Owen, Edward Thomas, the Georgians, Edwardian legacies, Edith Wharton, Ernest Hemingway, F. Scott Fitzgerald, other American writers, or life-writing would be especially welcome. Liverpool Hope has excellent library resources for the study of the First World War.

Please contact Guy Cuthbertson at CuthbeG@hope.ac.uk if you would like to discuss a proposal. Continue reading

Two Week Extension: Englishness and The Edwardian Landscape

 

The Blue Pool, 1911 (oil on panel), John, Augustus Edwin (1878-1961) © The estate of Augustus John. Aberdeen Art Gallery and Museum, Scotland / Bridgeman Images.

The Blue Pool, 1911 (oil on panel), John, Augustus Edwin (1878-1961) © The estate of Augustus John. Aberdeen Art Gallery and Museum, Scotland / Bridgeman Images.

The Edwardian Culture Network is able to offer postgraduate and early-career researcher bursaries to speakers wishing to take part in the upcoming symposium ‘Englishness and the Edwardian Landscape’. New deadline: February 8th. N.B. This call for papers is open to those currently working on a postgraduate qualification, or to those who finished their PhD after 2012:

CFP: ‘To show a foreigner England’: Englishness and the Edwardian Landscape

Royal West of England Academy, Bristol, April 11th 2016.

This one-day symposium – coinciding with the exhibition Inquisitive Eyes: Slade Painters in Edwardian Wessex – takes as its starting point the following quotation from E.M. Forster’s novel Howard’s End (1910):

If one wanted to show a foreigner England, perhaps the wisest course would be to take him to the final section of the Purbeck Hills, and stand him on their summit, a few miles to the east of Corfe. Then system after system of our island would roll together under his feet.

Forster’s comment suggests that the rolling hills of the South West should be taken as a synecdoche for England. Taking our cues from this idea – but expanding the discussion to include other regions also – we will address a range of important questions: where was Englishness located at the turn of the century, and why? What made a landscape especially English, or distinctly not-English? What role did artist’s colonies play in understanding and promoting particular landscapes in the national consciousness? How important was landscape to the development of modern art in England? How was the English landscape marketed to audiences outside England, especially the wider Empire? Finally, how did depictions of the landscape by writers such as Thomas Hardy affect visual artists?

Although many of the questions raised by the exhibition are art-historical in nature, we welcome speakers and participants from other disciplines, including literature, cultural geography and history. We have already identified and contacted a small group of established academics, who have agreed to take part in our discussions. These include figures who have written widely on the subject,  some of whom contributed to the 2002 publication Geographies of Englishness: Landscape and the National Past, the influence of which we wish to acknowledge. In the thirteen years since this publication, however, research into early twentieth-century British art, national identity and Empire has expanded greatly, and new thinkers have entered the field. To this end, three-four graduate/early-career researchers will be selected to speak at the symposium. To be eligible, you must be currently working on an MA or PhD, or have completed a PhD after 2012. Speakers will receive a £100 grant to support travel and accommodation. To apply, please send a 300 word proposal, along with a one-page CV, to edwardianculture@hotmail.co.uk by January 16th.

This event has been generously supported by the Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art, and will be hosted by the Royal West of England Academy.