A Reservoir of Ideas

Essays in Honour of Paul Williamson

An invaluable reference for all those interested in the history of sculpture and medieval art. This lavishly illustrated volume is a celebratory tribute to the leading scholar and curator Paul Williamson, formerly Keeper of Sculpture, Metalwork, Ceramics & Glass at the Victoria and Albert Museum.
Date Published :
April 2017
Publisher :
Paul Holberton Publishing
Editor :
Glyn Davies, Eleanor Townsend
Language:
English
Illustration :
200
Format Available    QuantityPrice
Hardback
ISBN : 9781911300168
Pages : 292
Dimensions : 11.4 X 9.9 inches
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In stock
$65.00

Overview
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An invaluable reference for all those interested in the history of sculpture and medieval art. This lavishly illustrated volume is a celebratory tribute to the leading scholar and curator Paul Williamson, formerly Keeper of Sculpture, Metalwork, Ceramics & Glass at the Victoria and Albert Museum.

This rich collection of over twenty fully illustrated essays covers an array of medieval topics, with a particular emphasis on sculpture. The contributors, all friends and colleagues of the dedicatee, are prominent experts in their different fields, from the United Kingdom, Europe and the United States. The wide range of subjects covered includes ivories, wood carvings, alabaster, architectural sculpture, caskets, reliquaries, and questions of imagery and iconography. With a full scholarly apparatus, A Reservoir of Ideas is an invaluable work of reference.

The volume celebrates the museum career and scholarship of Paul Williamson, a scholar and curator whose outstanding contribution to art history continues to expand and inspire the study of sculpture in general and medieval art in particular. Williamson joined the V&A in 1979 as one of the youngest curators ever appointed. He took over as Chief Curator in 1989, and he was Director of the Collections from 2004-07, and Acting Deputy Director in 2013. During his 36-year career at the V&A he wrote 17 books and over 150 articles. Williamson’s profound experience and expertise as a curator at the V&A have both enhanced his own well-deserved reputation as the leading expert in the study of European sculpture, and simultaneously enriched the standing and holdings of the collections themselves. The works acquired during his time at the V&A, and the gallery displays that he either oversaw or curated himself, amply demonstrate his tremendous range of knowledge and appreciation of art. Despite his wide-ranging expertise and enthusiasm for the art of all periods, it seems fitting that this volume is devoted to medieval art, and primarily to sculpture - the works of art that undoubtedly lie closest to his heart. It is a testament to his standing at the pinnacle of medieval studies that so many leading experts have eagerly contributed to this exceptional collection.

About The Author
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Glyn Davies is curator of medieval sculpture at the Victoria and Albert Museum. He works on medieval sculpture, metalwork and textiles from the thirteenth century to the Reformation. He was the lead medieval curator for the Medieval & Renaissance Galleries redisplay at the V&A (opened 2009), and co-authored the accompanying book (with Kirstin Kennedy). In 2016, he co-curated the exhibition Opus Anglicanum: Masterpieces of English Medieval Embroidery (London, 2016). He is the co-author (with Paul Williamson) of the catalogue of the V&A’s Gothic ivories, Medieval Ivory Carvings 1200–1550 (2014).

Over many years at the V&A working on a wide variety of exhibitions and gallery projects, Eleanor Townsend co-curated the exhibition Gothic: Art for England 1400–1547 (London, 2003), assisting with the editing of the accompanying award-winning catalogue, and was a curator on the Medieval & Renaissance Galleries Project which opened in 2009. She is now a PhD researcher in the History of Art Department at the University of Oxford, working on late medieval English sculpture.

REVIEWS
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"An invaluable and beautifully illustrated reference work … unreservedly recommended."

- Midwest Book Review, June 2017

"A stunning reference point for the latest work in the field. Opening its pages is like entering some glittering Medieval treasury, a fine celebration of the cosmopolitan range of its industrious and highly regarded dedicatee."

- The Art Newspaper, November 2017

"Handsomely produced ... the breadth of subjects covered, the sumptuous color photographs, and typically crisp prose of the contributions make this volume a delight to read."

- The Medieval Review, April 2018

"A particularly attractive and lavishly illustrated collection ... thoughtful and engaging ... a remarkable compendium of studies on medieval works of art in different media ... a valuable contribution to scholarship."

- The Burlington, November 2018

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