Connecting Collections: Researching and Exhibiting Medieval and Early Modern Collections in Melbourne and Manchester

Melbourne Workshop: Foreign Bodies – Monday 9th April and Tuesday 10th April, 2018

Monday 9th April

2.00-5.00 Object viewing sessions at:

– State Library of Victoria

– National Gallery of Victoria International

7.00 Participants’ dinner, Lemongrass Restaurant, 174-178 Lygon St, Carlton


Tuesday 10th April

Print Room, Baillieu Library; and Visual Cultures Resource Center (VCRC), John Medley Building, Level 3, East Tower, University of Melbourne

9.30-10.30 Print Room: viewing of prints and drawings objects. Welcome. Presentation of current/projected research for the project (10 minutes per person)
10.45-11.00 Tea & coffee available in the Fourth Floor Linkway of John Medley
11.00-1.00 Presentation of current/projected research for the project (10 minutes per person – SVL and NGV objects)
1.00-2.15 Lunch
2.15-3.30 Discussion of research topics for online exhibition and special issue publication
3.30-3.45 Coffee
3.45-4.45 Round-table discussion (state of the field)


Manchester Masterclass: Cristina González (Oklahoma State University) – Thursday 22nd March 2018, from 10-12 midday.

If you would like to attend the masterclass, please e-mail Dr Cordelia Warr, Art History and Visual Studies (

Title: Itinerant Images in Spanish America: Art, Object, and Devotion in a Trans-Atlantic/Pacific World

The class probes the circulation of people, ideas and objects in the early modern Spanish world. While focusing on circuits of exchange, discussion will move beyond “origins” and a model-copy dichotomy in order to investigate refractive networks that emphasize materiality, context, and performance as sources for new meanings within the Spanish viceroyalties. Cases in which images gain currency through repetition, adaptation, and travel are especially relevant. We also explore the transformative potential of exotic materials, particularly with regards to devotional objects. How do early modern encounters impact the sacred in its material forms?


Porras, Stephanie, “Going viral?: Maerten de Vos’s St. Michael the Archangel,” Netherlands Yearbook for History and Art 66:1 (2017), 54-79.

González, Cristina Cruz., “The Balvanera Escudo,” Conversations: An Online Journal of the Center for the Study of Material and Visual Cultures (2014):

González, Cristina Cruz., “Our Lady of El Pueblito: A Marian Devotion on the Northern Frontier,” Catholic Southwest: A Journal of History and Culture 23 (2012), 3-21.

The  Mass of St Gregory the Great
Feathers on wood panel
Mexico City, 1539
Musée des Jocobins, Auch (France)



Manchester Lecture: Cristina González (Oklahoma State University) – Thursday 22nd March 2018, at 5:30, in the Whitworth Study Centre

Title: Conventual Bodies and the Body of Christ: The Power of Christocentric Piety in the Early Modern Spanish Convent

Art history has approached female monastic culture in New Spain through the lens of crowned-nun portraiture, a late colonial genre that reaffirmed a nun’s position as a mystical Bride of Christ. This has led to scholarly neglect of female imitatio Christi and the ecclesiastical pretence exhibited by several early modern holy women in Spain and Spanish America. Using examples from Spain, Mexico, and Guatemala, this talk explores the various pictorial strategies for capturing and performing an alter Christus status in transatlantic female communities. I discuss the images from the standpoint of their theological and political relevance while considering their optical demands and how they enlighten our understanding of a mimesis-imitatio correlation.

Christ with Augustinian Nuns
Oil on canvas
Puebla, 1750
Museo de Arte Religioso, Puebla (Mexico)


Portrait of Abbess Jerónima de la Asunción
Engraving by José Mota
Madrid, 1717



About the Speaker:

Cristina Cruz González is a specialist in the visual culture of Spanish America. She received her Ph.D. in Art History from the University of Chicago and her M.Phil in Classics from Cambridge University. She holds an M.A. in Art History from the University of Texas at Austin and a B.A. in Anthropology from Yale University.

Cristina González is finishing her first monograph, “Landscapes of Conversion: Franciscan Politics and Sacred Objects in New Spain,” which is focused on Franciscan image theory in colonial Mexico. The book considers the relationship between medieval piety and colonial devotions, the circulation and propagation of sacred objects in the Americas, and the effect of mendicant patronage on religious ritual. She has begun work on a second book project, “Women on the Cross: Imitatio Christi and Female Piety in Early Modern Spain and Spanish America.”


Manchester Workshop: Foreign Bodies – Monday 3rd July and Tuesday 4th July 2017

Monday 3rd July

2.00-5.00 Arranged visits to The John Rylands Library, Chetham’s Library or the Whitworth Study Centre
5.00-6.30 Check-in at hotel
6.30 Participants’ dinner

Tuesday 4th July

The Christie Room, The John Rylands Library, Deansgate

10.00-10.50 Reading Room of the John Rylands Library open with pre-arranged items & coffee available in Café Rylands
11.00 Welcome
11.15-1.15 Presentation of current/projected research for the project (10 minutes per person)
1.15-2.30 Lunch
2.30-3.30 Round table discussion (state of the field)
3.30-4.00 Coffee
4.00-4.45 Research topics for exhibition and publication
5.00 Participants’ dinner