MARIA

MARIA

Marian Apocryphal Representations in Art

From Hagiographic Collections to Church Space and Liturgy in Fourteenth-to-Sixteenth-Century France

The medieval iconography of the Virgin Mary has been subject of considerable research which has explored its devotional functions, cultural aspects or classified it according to historical developments, all this suggesting the exhaustion of further research in the field. Still, there is an abundance of material which has been sporadically analysed indicating the possibility and need of further research on Marian apocryphal representations.


Mission

As an exhaustive interdisciplinary analysis has not been carried out so far, my investigation will be the first comprehensive study on the religious contexts in which depictions of Marian Apocrypha were disseminated in fourteenth and sixteenth century France.

While previous scholarship on Marian iconography has traced its developments from textual to visual sources, this project aims at furthering existent research by demonstrating that changes in the liturgical context, in which depictions of Mary were used, were far more significant to their evolution, popularity, and dissemination.

This study, therefore, builds on a range of scholarship which has outlined the importance of sacred space to our understanding of religious cultures. The project also offers a comparative approach on (visual and textual) Apocryphal material by concentrating on the analysis of religious (liturgy, epigraphy, hagiography) sources in connection to iconographic patterns and their transition from hagiographic collections to church space with particular emphasis on the early life of the Virgin.

Interest in Christian Apocrypha re-emerged in contexts such as that of the discovery of the Coptic library at Nag Hammadi, ecumenicity in church and academy, and/or growth of cross-disciplinary studies. Previous research on Marian (textual and visual) sources of apocryphal origin is sporadic and falls mostly in three categories:

  • research on the vitae Marianum
  • research on Marian iconography
  • research on the transmission of Marian Apocryphal texts/vitae in hagiographic collections.

By exploring the existent literature on this topic, one observes that fundamental issues on Marian apocryphal iconography have been partially omitted in previous studies; explained by resuming the corresponding episode, presented in a descriptive fashion or offered as brief (art) historical overview. These cases offer generally short studies on apocryphal iconography or, partially, stress certain religious contexts indicating the potential for an extensive analysis with regard to the proliferation and incorporation of Apocryphal textual material in liturgy, epigraphy, and various hagiographic collections and their influence over Marian iconography. The investigation of medieval apocryphal iconography in religious contexts is only partially explored, yet this exploration itself offers new perspectives as suggested by recently published literature.

Consequently, I plan to start my investigation within these neglected resources, by concentrating on the early life of the Virgin Mary, with the aim of examining their integration into religious contexts (liturgy and private devotion) and their transition from hagiographic collections to church space.

The overall objective of this project is to carry out the first comprehensive study on the contribution of religious contexts (liturgy, liturgical tradition, and devotio moderna, a movement of religious reform) to the development and dissemination of Marian apocryphal depictions and their transition from hagiographic collections to church space. The project has a strong interdisciplinary level by integrating medieval iconography, liturgy, hagiography, and cultural studies. The research will indicate the intricate connection between these fields and the processes of assimilating Apocryphal data.


Dissemination

Publications

Articles

  • Znorovszky, Andrea-Bianka. “Mary as an Altar and Sacrifice: the Presentation to the Temple in Fourteenth-to-Sixteenth-Century French Miniatures.” Conference Proceedings of the 5th Cycle of Medieval Studies, Florence, 3-4 June 2019. Lesmo: Edizioni EBS Print, 2019 (iris.unive.it/handle/10278/3714640)
  • Znorovszky, Andrea-Bianka. “The Apocryphal Geography of the Virgin Mary: Dissemination and Liturgy.” In “Set Me as a Seal Upon Thy Heart. Constructions of Female Sanctity in the Middle Ages.” (ed.) Andrea-Bianka Znorovszky, 41-64. Budapest: Trivent Publishing, 2018 (trivent-publishing.eu/home/33-set-me-as-a-seal-upon-thy-heart.html)
  • Znorovszky, Andrea-Bianka. “Beyond the Borders of Canonicity? The Virgin Mary, Apocryphal Iconography, and Hagiographic Collections in Fourteenth-Sixteenth-Century France.” In Teritorii, graniţe, comunităţi [Territories, Borders, Communities] (ed.) Costin Popescu, 379-395. Bucureşti: Editura Universităţii din Bucureşti, 2018

Edited volumes

  • (Expected, Spring 2020) “Apocryphal Iconography [tentative title]” (eds.) Andrea-Bianka Znorovszky, Stanislava Kuzmova. Budapest: Trivent Publishing. Published under the “Picturing the Middle Ages and Early Modernity” Series, (ed.) Andrea-Bianka Znorovszky

Peer-reviewed international conference participation

  • (Forthcoming) 06/07/2020-09/07/2020, Paper TBA, International Medieval Congress, University of Leeds, Leeds, UK
  • (Forthcoming) 07/05/2020-10/05/2020, Paper TBA, International Congress on Medieval Studies, Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, U.S.A.
  • (Forthcoming) 22/04/2020-24/04/2020, Paper TBA, Salve Regina. New Approaches to Marian Devotion in the Middle Ages, Ca’ Foscari Univesity, Venice, Italy
file pdfCall for papers - Deadline: 8 December 2019
"Salve Regina. New Approaches to Marian Devotion in the Middle Ages", 22-24 April 2020
1.26 M
  • 13/11/2019-15/11/2019, Picturing Mary in the Presentation to the Temple: Apocryphal Dynamics and Liturgical Developments in Medieval France, International Congress for Young Researchers in Middle Ages, University of Évora, Evora, Portugal
  • 01/07/2019-04/07/2019, Marian Apocrypha in French Liturgy and Church Tradition of the Middle Ages, International Medieval Congress, University of Leeds, Leeds, UK
  • 03/06/2019-04/06/2019, Mary as an Altar and Sacrifice: the Presentation at the Temple in Fourteenth-to-Sixteenth-Century French Miniatures, 5th Cycle of Medieval Studies, NUME, Gruppo di ricerca sul medioevo latino, Florence, Italy
  • 30/05/2019-31/05/2019, Mary with a Crown: Adapting the Iconography of the Presentation to the Temple in Manuscript Illuminations, Fourth Medieval Workshop in Rijeka, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, Rijeka, Croatia
  • 09/05/2019-12/05/2019, Visualizing Saint Anne and Mary’s Youth in French Miniatures, International Congress on Medieval Studies, Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, U.S.A.
  • 02/07/2018-05/07/2018, Mary and the Apocrypha: the Nativity and Presentation at the Temple between Hagiographic Collections and Church Representations, International Medieval Congress, University of Leeds, Leeds, UK
  • 03/07/2017-06/07/2017, The Apocryphal Geography of the Virgin Mary: Dissemination and Liturgy, International Medieval Congress, University of Leeds, Leeds, UK
  • 02/06/2016-04/06/2016, The Virgin of the Apocrypha: Reasons for Further Research on Marian Iconography, Tenth Conference of Iconographic Studies: Marian Iconography East and West, Center for Iconographic Studies, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, University of Rijeka, Rijeka, Croatia

Organization of conferences and scientific meetings

  • 06/07/2020-09/07/2020, Session organizer (2), Mary-Anne: Iconographies and Layers of Meanin, International Medieval Congress, University of Leeds, Leeds, UK, participants TBA
  • 07/05/2020-10/05/2020, Session organizer (1), Mary on the Move: Marian Iconography in Late Medieval France, International Congress on Medieval Studies, Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, U.S.A., participants TBA
  • 22/04/2020-24/04/2020, Conference organizer, Salve Regina. New Approaches to Marian Devotion in the Middle Ages, 22-24 April 2020, Ca’ Foscari University, Venice, Italy, TBA participants
  • 01/07/2019-04/07/2019, Session organizer (4), Apocryphal Iconography and Church Tradition, Apocryphal Iconography: Integration and Adaptation, 'Deformis formositas ac formosa deformitas': The Ugliness of and the Beauty of Ugliness, I - Ugliness and Deformity in Medieval Text', Deformis formositas ac formosa deformitas': The Ugliness of Beauty and the Beauty of Ugliness, II: Materializing Ugliness and Deformity in the Middle Ages, International Medieval Congress, University of Leeds, Leeds, UK, participants TBA
  • 09/05/2019-12/05/2019, Session organizer (3), Visualizing Women in the Apocrypha, Re-defining the Monster: Monstrous Otherness, Re-defining the Monster: Mapping Diseased and Exotic Monsters, International Congress on Medieval Studies, Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, U.S.A., participants TBA

Workshops, seminars, colloquia, lectures

Seminars - undergraduate/graduate

  • 08/04/2019, Mary’s Presentation to the Temple in Fourteenth-to-Sixteenth-Century French Manuscript Illuminations, School for International Education, Ca’ Foscari University, Venice, Italy

Workshops

  • 05/10/2018-06/10/2018, Reflections of Apocryphal Influences in Marian Iconography: the Nativity and Presentation in the Temple in French Late Medieval Manuscripts, Workshop: ‘Personal Redemption: The Impact of Lived Experience on the Conceptualization of the Sacred’, ETH, Zürich, Switzerland, Zentrum “Geschichte des Wissens” (ZGW)

Team

Project coordinator

Andrea-Bianka Znorovszky

Advisory board - Project supervisor

Flavia De Rubeis