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Jan van Eyck and the Northern Renaissance in Bruges: New Interdisciplinary Research

Henri Pirenne Institute for Medieval Studies (Ghent University) & BRON Research Centre (Musea Brugge) are organising a two-day conference on new and ongoing research on Jan van Eyck and the Northern Renaissance in Bruges. This page is where you will find all the information.

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Fifteenth-century Netherlandish painting, and Bruges as one of its main centres, have long been classic research topics in art history. This is epitomized by the study of Jan van Eyck and his oeuvre, which has resulted in an extensive body of work by important (art) historians. In the last few years social historians have started new investigations of the archival sources while archaeologists have also increasingly begun to look into the relationship between painting and material culture in this period.

The aim of this workshop is to present stimulating new and ongoing research on Jan van Eyck and Northern Renaissance Bruges within the context of the wider Burgundian Low Countries, in an interdisciplinary conversation between leading scholars in the fields of art history, socio-economic and political history and archaeology.

Practical info

Dates: 25 and 26 April 2024

Location: Musea Brugge, Vriendenzaal (Groeningemuseum)

Ticket: €90 / €40 for students*

Don’t forget to bring your student card or to send us proof of your registration at a university to musea.secretariaat@brugge.be. Your registration will not be completed without this document.


Thursday 25 April

09:00-09:25 Registration and coffee

09:25-09:35 Word of welcome: Anne van Oosterwijk (Musea Brugge)

Session 1: Bruges, the Burgundian State and the Northern Renaissance I

Chair: Anna Koopstra (Musea Brugge)

09:35-10:00 Stephan Kemperdick (Gemäldegalerie, Berlin), ‘Hernoul le fin’ and Portraits of Couples

10:00-10:25 Maxime Poulain (Ghent University) and Mathijs Speecke (Ghent University), An Alchemist’s Workshop? New Evidence on the Production of Pigments in Late Medieval Bruges.

10:25-10:50 Bert Verwerft (Ghent University), Wim De Clercq (Ghent University) & Jan Dumolyn (Ghent University), Arnolfini, Bladelin, and their Social Networks in Bruges

11:10-11:40 Coffee break

Session 2: Bruges, the Burgundian State and the Northern Renaissance II

Chair: Frederik Buylaert (Ghent University)

11:40-12:05 Susan Frances Jones (Northeastern University London), Jan van Eyck and his Workshop: the 'Master-and-Assistants' Model, the Van Maelbeke Virgin and the Question of Chronology

12:05-12:30 Niels Fieremans (Ghent University), Pirates, Paintings and Portinari. The Case of the Burgundian Galley

12:30-12:55 Sophie Caron (Musée du Louvre, Paris), The Madonna with Chancelor Rolin: Two Functions for One Object?

13:15-14:45 Lunch break

Session 3: Patronage and Circulation

Chair: Lisa Demets (Ghent University)

14:45-15:10 Leen Bervoets (Ghent University), Patronage of the Northern Renaissance in Numbers. A Statistical Analysis of the Social Context of Early Netherlandish Painting

15:10-15:35 Till-Holger Borchert (Suermondt-Ludwig Museum, Aachen), Barthélémy d’Eyck and Eyckian Manuscript Paintings Between the Courts of Burgundy and Anjou

15:35-16:00 Hendrik Callewier (State Archives of Belgium, Bruges), Van Eyck's "Virgin and Child" as A Monument to a Vain and Ambitious Canon: A New Biography of Joris van der Paele

16:00-16:20 Project presentations Ghent University and Musea Brugge

Friday 26 April

9.30-10.00 Registration and coffee

Session 4: Van Eyck and Beyond

Chair: Wim Blockmans (Professor Emeritus, Leiden University)

10:00-10:25 Danny Praet (Ghent University), The Virtues on the Ghent Altarpiece

10:25-10:50 Maximiliaan P.J. Martens (Ghent University), A Newly Discovered Blessing Christ by Quinten Metsys

10:50-11:15 Kathleen Froyen (KIK-IRPA, Brussels), The Challenges of the Third Phase of the Restoration of the Ghent Altarpiece

11:15-11:40 Emma Capron (The National Gallery, London), The Ugly Duchess and Humanistic Satire

11:40-12:00 General discussion and closing remarks chaired by Marc Boone (Ghent University)