The Nature of Exotic Shells: Labor and the Costs of Visibility
- Online event via Zoom
- Date: Apr 7, 2021
- Time: 03:00 PM - 05:00 PM (Local Time Germany)
- Speaker: Claudia Swan
- Contact: email@example.com
This talk traces the passage of shells from exotic
beaches and waters to European spaces of collecting, appreciation, and
scientific observation, paying attention to the sorts of labor subsumed under
the aegis of devotion to rarities. That sociable interactions and networks
undergird natural history and the culture of curiosity is not news. What this
talk brings to a social analysis of the production of early modern science is a
focus on the forms of labor that were key to making Dutch natural history
visible in collections and in publications. Its focus is on a signal
publication on shells by the German-born naturalist Georgius Eberhard Rumphius
(1627-1702), who lived out his life in the Dutch East Indies: D’Amboinsche rariteitkamer.
Claudia Swan is the inaugural Mark Steinberg Weil Professor of Art History & Archaeology at Washington University in St. Louis, and the author, most recently of Rarities of these Lands. Art, Trade, and Diplomacy in the Dutch Republic (Princeton University Press, 2021). She is co-author, with Marisa Bass, Anne Goldgar, and Hanneke Grootenboer, of Conchophilia. Shells, Art, and Curiosity in Early Modern Europe (forthcoming, Princeton University Press, 2021).
For participation via Zoom, please register HERE.
Scientific organization: Katherine Reinhart