The central and western Balkans showcase one of the most diverse cultural and historical mixes that can be found anywhere in Europe. The actual topography, combined with the metaphorical ‘fault line’ of schisms that has divided Europe since the initial East-West division of the Roman Empire, creates a unique sense of frontier-lands. This is manifested in all aspects of arts and cultures of the area.
Confirming culture’s unifying effect, the arts of Serbia, Kosovo and Montenegro and their neighbouring countries reflect the area’s role in bridging the East-West divides. This is where the Eastern icon-making style transforms into Southern Renaissance; Byzantine church plans combine with Romanesque chapels; frescoes unify the teachings of Giotto and Constantinople’s courtly art… Yet these are not mere combinations or stylistic influences but original interpretations, resulting in new, unique regional schools of art.
Through a multidisciplinary approach, this day school will examine in a wider European context the art, history and cultures of some of the continent’s oldest and youngest countries – Kosovo, Montenegro and Serbia. It will showcase artistic treasures from medieval to contemporary times, discuss the artistic exchanges between the European East and West, and provide clues for a better understanding of the region’s turbulent past and present.
The Balkans by Mark Mazower, published by Phoenix; ISBN-13: 978-1842125441 (for broad historical background only)
Date: Thursday, 25 January, 2018 Time: 10.30 -16.30
Methodist Central Hall,
Manchester, M1 1JQ
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Nirvana Romell, 37 Buckingham Road, Wilmslow, SK9 5LA, Cheshire