Read About the First Museums of Medieval Art in Romania in the Latest Article by Cosmin Minea, ‘Medieval Art, National Architectural Heritage and Museums in Late 19th Century Romania’

Abstract: This article describes how the material heritage was given new
shape and meaning in the context of the new nation-state of Romania. It starts
by looking at the history of the first public museum in Romania, namely the
Museum of Natural History and Antiquities in Bucharest and also at the
broader interest in the Roman antiquities in 19th century Romania. It then
focuses on the first restoration of historical monuments and the initiatives of
two of the most well-known architects at the time to establish museums of
religious art: André Lecomte du Noüy (1844-1914) and Ion Mincu (1852-
1912). The process of creating a national heritage for Romania has led to the
design of valuable new buildings and was underpinned by a powerful will to
modernise the country. At the same time, it has represented a destructive force.
The built fabric of historical sites and historical artefacts were reshaped,
rebuilt, given new meanings and context, so that to fit into the political
objectives of the new nation-state. The article will balance and analyse the
significance of these various efforts to restore historical monuments and
establish the first museums of Romanian heritage.

Mihnea Mihail will present on 9 July his paper at the Leeds International Medieval Congress

The is titled ‘St Anne, Mary, and Christ’s Body: Anna Selbdritt in 14th- and 15th-Century Wall Paintings in the Kingdom of Hungary’

Click this link to see the schedule and for full registration info.


This paper will concentrate on 14th and 15th centuries mural representations of Anna Selbdritt in the former Hungarian Kingdom. While academic literature mostly examined painted panels, manuscripts and sculptures, wall paintings received less attention. The ten murals from the territories that were part of the Kingdom of Hungary were created in the 14th and first half of the 15th centuries, so prior to the peak of devotion to St. Anne, that can be roughly established in the second half of the 15th century. It is frequently considered that the debates regarding the Immaculate Conception and the interest in genealogical filiations were major theological and social aspects of the Late Middle Ages that had an impact upon the development and spread of Anna Selbdritt and Holy Kinship iconography. However, I argue that, in the case of the Hungarian Kingdom, the interest in St. Anne’s figure, alongside Mary and Christ, was not fostered by the presence of Franciscans or other religious orders that held the Immaculatist view, as has been previously asserted. I believe that at the core of this iconography was the figure of Mary and her role, visual and theological, in Eucharistic devotion as a means of personal redemption. The wider iconographic context in which the Anna Selbdritt theme was included, alongside scenes like The Last Judgment and motifs like the Pietà and The Discovery of the True Cross can be interpreted as visual enhancement of Christ’s fleshly presence in the sacral space and demonstrate the murals Eucharistic and salvific functions.

Full Video of our Progress Report: Art Historiographies in Central and Eastern Europe. An Inquiry from the Perspective of Entangled Histories

This ERC Starting Grant was awarded to Dr Ada Hajdu in 2018, with New Europe College-Institute for Advanced Study as its Host Institution. The project was due to last five years. Following Dr Hajdu’s untimely death in July 2020, the project was curtailed and will come to an end this summer. The research team and the Host Institution felt the need for a concluding meeting to reflect on the project’s achievements and, at the same time, to offer tribute to a deeply missed friend and colleague.

Cosmin Minea has published his full chapter about ‘Foreign and Local Entanglements in the Creation of Romanian Architectural Heritage in the Late 19th Century’

Cosmin Minea, ‘Foreign and Local Entanglements in the Creation of Romanian Architectural Heritage in the Late 19th Century’, Art and Politics in the Modern Period, Dragan Damjanović et all. (eds.), (Zagreb: University of Zagreb, FF-press, 2019), 293-302.


Magdalena Kunińska will present her paper titled ‘The dignity of the art historian”: Lech Kalinowski, Jan Białostocki and a response to Max Dvořák “Kunstgeschichte als Geistesgeschichte“ in Poland after the Second World War’ on April 16

She will take part in the conference The Influence of the Vienna School of Art History II: The 100th Anniversary of Max Dvořák’s Death which takes place on 15-16 April 2021 online and is organised by the Institute of Art History of the Czech Academy of Sciences.

The conference is held online on Zoom. Registration will take place via e-mail: Unregistered participants will be able to watch the conference online on Facebook of the Institute of Art History of the Czech Academy of Sciences.

See here more details, including the conference program.