Current Students

April Armstrong-Bascombe

My PhD thesis provides an inter-disciplinary analysis of the Mediterranean as a site of rich cultural exchange in the fourteenth century. In particular, I examine the dissemination of visual ideas, the evidence of artistic migration, and the transmission of iconography and style between artists and craftsmen located in mercantile centres across the Mediterranean basin. The objects of my research, which include small panel paintings, painted crucifixes and altarpieces, are analysed as a means to elucidate our understanding of the networks of association and influence between artists, patrons and merchants in the late medieval period. Striking similarities between the art produced by painters active in the Crown of Aragon with artists resident in Angevin Naples, the Italian city-states of Pisa and Genoa, and the papal court at Avignon, are testament to the close commercial, religious and social links which existed between Spain and Italy in the medieval period. My research considers the evidence of cultural mobility from a broad perspective, but major themes include: the Mediterranean as a united site of transnational cultural dialogue; patronage as a cultural mediator; artists and merchants as agents of cultural mobility; migration; devotional culture, and the workshop as a site of innovation and collaboration.

Supervisory Team:  Prof. Andrew Beresford, Modern Languages and Cultures (Durham), Prof. Stefano Cracolici, Modern Languages and Cultures (Durham).

Start Date: October 2016.