Universitas del Mediterráneo al Pacífico, international congress organized by Manuel Parada López de Corselas and Laura María Palacios Méndez
Call for papers open until the 1st of April 2017: http://congresouniversitas.wixsite.com/congress
Universitas del Mediterráneo al Pacífico is an International Congress of History of Art, which will take place at the Real Academia de España in Rome between the 20th and the 23rd of September 2017. The congress aims to reconsider the core ideas used to approach the Hispanic past in a broader sense, through interdisciplinary and intercultural points of view. First of all relegating ideas such as centre and periphery, which simplify reality in a world that was interconnected through a complex system of networks and nodes. Inside this framework, the peninsular kingdoms progressively acquired greater importance. This process concluded with the figure of Charles I, whose power grew in parallel to the territories that ultimately fell under his control. This series of events, which started in the 15th century, resulted in plurality – the key of artistic manifestations of Hispanic culture. This is an aspect we need to understand, not just inside the European scope – since Europe is not an isolated entity – but also overseas; firstly in all of the Mediterranean, as the ancient communication bridge, and secondly in the area between the Atlantic and the Pacific, as the non sufficit orbis of the austrias.
This is the point where the coordinates of space intersect with the multiplicity of traditions, whose encounter and dialogue gave rise to one of the most significant phenomena of culture during these centuries: syncretism. This is a key part of the peninsular kingdoms’ history because of their strategic location, which constantly grew over the years as their frontiers expanded. With the substratum of the Roma, Visigoth and Muslim Hispania during these centuries – legacies that shaped uses, concepts and aesthetics of art beyond common beliefs – Italy, Flanders, pre-Hispanic America, the isles of the Pacific, China and Japan became increasingly prominent on this cultural map.
Through this process, an iconosphere was created which interrelated at a global level. It was defined by the fluctuating tensions and symbioses between these different cultures in relation to politics, economy and social aspects. This network of connections resulted in the plurality of the arts, and also in the settlement of several hegemonies, which determined their role and eminence within diversity. A Universitas that intertwined in key cities (such as Seville), ports of culture, institutions, embassies, bank branches and trade, as well as in figures like viceroys, diplomats, explorers, missionaries and merchants who served as nodes in a multifaceted cultural horizon that was expanding.