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Workshop Tamara Golan



von 14:00 bis 15:00




Zentralinstitut für Kunstgeschichte, Vortragssaal Raum 242, II. OG, Katharina-von-Bora-Straße 10, 80333 München

Termin übernehmen

Vision and Inquiry in Hans Fries’ Four Panel Paintings of Sts. Francis, Sebastian, Bernhard, and Anne at the Alte Pinakothek (1501)

In this workshop, I will explore the ascendancy of the judicial inquisitio as the most effective means of establishing truth in the late Middle Ages and the dissemination of this mode of inquiry in the artisanal sphere. Particular attention will be paid to how concerns over the authenticity of miraculous and visionary experiences merged with the rhetoric of the inquisitio during the Councils of Constance (1414-1418) and Basel (1431-1445). The introduction of the inquisitional procedure in this context recalibrated an already existing discourse on the nature of visions and other miracles, resulting in the tendency to place both under greater suspicion. In light of the growing distrust of vision and miracles, I contend that artists consciously experimented with innovative strategies of representation that embraced, navigated, and adapted to concurrent concerns of how to prove the miraculous.

This paper will therefore examine a set of four panel paintings (1501) by the Swiss artist Hans Fries in the Alte Pinakothek. I will analyze the representation of visionary experiences in these four panels, focusing in particular on the panel of St. Sebastian, in order to assess the particular visual strategies used by Fries that imbued his images with an evidentiary status, one which met the standards of proof demanded by the judicial sphere. As I hope to demonstrate, Fries was highly attuned to the kind of evidence required when claims for what is shown were couched in the rhetoric of visionary experience.