Publication details

Experiencing Medieval Art from St Petersburg to Paris : The trajectories of André Nikolajevič Grabar



Year of publication 2019
Type Appeared in Conference without Proceedings
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Arts

Description Born in Kiev in 1896 – the very year Nicolas II arrived to the throne of Holy Russia – and died in 1990 in Paris, art historian and archeologist André Nikolajevič Grabar lived almost the entirety of the 70 years of the Sovietic Regime, from 1920 to 1989, outside of his birthplace. As such, his intellectual career also spanned the greater part of the twentieth century, responding to and at the same time deeply shaping the art historical approach of Byzantine art history. Although, to say “Byzantine” art history would be reductive of the broad range of topics that the works of Grabar encompassed, vastly embracing what could be termed Eastern and Western, late antique and medieval art.The double orientation of his scholarship, of course, seems almost caricatural of the physical orientation of his life – a movement from East to West – caused by the phenomenon of Russian emigration after 1917. Following the movement of Grabar, this paper wishes to reflect on three levels of transformation, the keyword of the conference. By three transformations are intended the one on individual and intellectual level, one on the field of art history as a collectivity in the years between 1917 and 1945, and finally a transformation whose roots are still deeply impacting the branch of art history today.
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