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French organization founded in Poitiers in 1953. The Centre d’études supérieures de civilisation médiévale (CECSM) is affiliated with the Université de Poitiers, the Centre national de la recherche scientifique (CNRS), and the Ministère de la Culture et de la Communication. The founders, among them historian Edmond-René Labande and art historian René Crozet, began CESCM as a month-long interdisciplinary study of medieval civilization, inviting foreign students to participate. CESCM has since developed into a permanent organization but maintains the international and interdisciplinary focus of its founders.

CESCM continues to hold its formative summer session, known as ‘Les Semaines d’études médiévales’, and invites advanced graduate students of all nationalities. The summer session spans two weeks and includes sessions on a variety of topics, each conducted by a member or affiliate of CESCM. CESCM supports collaborative research groups and regularly holds colloquia attended by the international scholarly community.

Since 1958 CECSM has published ...


Robin Adèle Greeley

(b Mexico City, 1968).

Mexican sculptor, installation artist, and multimedia artist. A figure in the generation of Mexican artists that came to prominence in the 1990s, Cruzvillegas studied pedagogy at the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (1986–1990). Informally, he also studied caricature with Rafael “El Fisgón” Barajas (1985) and with Gabriel Orozco in the Taller de los viernes (“Friday workshop,” 1987–1991). In 2007 Cruzvillegas began developing the aesthetic platform of autoconstrucción (“self-building”). Rooted in the ad hoc building tactics prevalent in squatter settlements on the outskirts of megacities, his autoconstrucción works inventively repurpose found detritus to produce a materialist critique of object experience in the 21st-century’s global consumer economy.

Cruzvillegas’s early artistic ventures were informed by, among other factors, his participation in the Taller de los Viernes; his engagement with the underground music, political caricature, and comic book scenes; and his encounters with artists and curators committed to opening Mexico’s then relatively insular art world to international ideas. At the informal Taller de los viernes run by Orozco, Cruzvillegas explored artists and ideas not readily available in Mexico at the time, assimilating everything from Robert Filliou’s ...


Katherine Chacón

(b Caracas, Aug 20, 1939; d Caracas, Apr 17, 2016).

Venezuelan photographer and architect. Dorronsoro worked successfully in the fields of photography and architecture from 1963. That year, after his graduation as an architect at the Universidad Central de Venezuela (UCV), he began to cultivate a passion for photography that developed a strong focus on portraits of the social landscape. His work portrays reality from a critical perspective that reveals the hidden edges of contemporary culture. Sometimes with a touch of irony or acid humor, his photographs provide data to understand the sociocultural context of the subjects and places that he represented and reveal the deep inequalities of the urban environment. Dorronsoro’s first solo exhibition, Gorka Dorronsoro: 21 fotografías de la serie Paraguaná–Venezuela, was held in 1974 at the Museo de Bellas Artes (MBA) in Caracas. The photographs included in this exhibit portrayed the social and economic realities of Paraguaná, a village immersed in poverty, where one of the most important oil refineries in the country is located. In ...


Yuka Kadoi

(b. Eger, 1926).

Hungarian art historian and archaeologist active in Britain. After studing Arabic and Oriental Art in Budapest, Fehérvári began his career there in 1952 at the Francis Hopp Museum of Eastern Asiatic Arts. Following the Hungarian Revolution of 1956, he moved to Vienna to begin a Ph.D. at the university of Vienna. He continued his doctoral research with a scholarship to the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) in London, working under the supervision of David Storm Rice. He was awarded a doctorate in 1961 for his study of the mihrab, and soon after he was appointed lecturer and later professor at SOAS. He conducted excavations in Iran (Ghubayra, 1971–6), Libya (Medinat al-Sultan, 1977–81) and Egypt (Bahnasa/Oxyrhynchus, 1985–7), and published on Islamic ceramics and metalwork. Following his retirement in 1991 and political changes in Hungary, he joined the Hungarian diplomatic service and was appointed Ambassador to Kuwait and other Gulf states, remaining in that position until ...


Betsy L. Chunko

(b Florence, June 10, 1946; d Fiesole, March 30, 2007).

Italian archaeologist. Francovich began his career as a student at the University of Florence, and from 1975 until his untimely death in 2007 he taught at the University of Siena. He is widely considered one of the most influential archaeologists of medieval Italy, particularly regarding the territory around Siena and Florence. His many publications over his 30-year career have shaped our understanding of the origins and development of hilltop villages in Tuscany. He died in a fall in the forest of Montececeri, near Fiesole.

Francovich completed his studies in history at the University of Florence under Elio Conti in 1971. There he had focused on the subject of deserted villages and local history, an interest which led him to enter the field of archaeology. A fellowship through the Harvard Center for Italian Renaissance Studies in 1972 at the Florentine Villa I Tatti allowed him to undertake his first village excavations....


(Mark David)

(b London, Aug 30, 1950).

English sculptor and draughtsman. He studied archaeology, anthropology and art history at Trinity College, Cambridge (1968–71) and Buddhist meditation in India and Sri Lanka (1971–4), experiences that profoundly inform his work. Influenced by the ideals of Indian sculpture as much as by those of modernism, his sculptures use the human form to explore man’s existence in and relation to the world. He is primarily known for the lead figures cast from his own body. Free of individualizing surface detail, with welding lines emphatically exposed, these remain physical casings rather than imitative representations of the universal human form. His belief that the spiritual and physical selves are inseparable is reflected in works such as Land, Sea and Air II (1982). Three figures, crouching, kneeling and standing, were placed on the seashore, embodying the process of Buddhist spiritual awareness. The work also referred to the earthly condition of the body and man’s relationship with his surroundings. These concerns are further reflected in Gormley’s full use of installation space, with sculptures suspended from ceiling and walls. Many works were made specifically for natural environments, most controversially ...


Cecile Johnson

(b New York, March 7, 1942).

British installation artist of American birth. She studied Mesoamerican archaeology and anthropology, tribal art, and linguistics, and conducted anthropological, fieldwork in Central America before moving to London and taking British residency in 1967. From the early 1970s Hiller included social, anthropological, and feminist concerns within her persistent questioning of traditional artistic notions of authorship, subject-matter, and methodology, which she articulated using painting, sculpture, sound, printed texts, video, photography, and drawing in numerous large-scale installations. Dedicated to the Unknown Artists (1972–6; exh. Brighton, U. Sussex, Gardner A. Cent., 1976) consisted of 305 ‘rough sea’ postcards collected by the artist from England, Scotland, and Wales, with accompanying charts and notes exploring the relationship between the linguistic description and visual depiction of ‘rough seas’. Photographed anonymously, the uncredited postcards were seen by Hiller as cultural artefacts, and her role as that of a collaborator who relocates them in an (installational) art context with her detailed document recording the entire process. Later works include the installation ...


Manuel Cirauqui

(b Santiago de Chile, 1972).

Chilean sculptor. A key figure in the post-dictatorship generation of Chilean contemporary artists, Navarro used electrically powered devices—functioning as light sculptures, in most cases—to address interweaving questions of social trauma, popular culture, and the apparently apolitical nature of sensory pleasure.

Born on the eve of Pinochet’s coup, Navarro grew up in Santiago during the dictatorship and started his art school training at the Universidad Católica in the aftermath of the military regime. His early works were handmade, bricolage versions of domestic objects such as lamps, hammocks, or even zootropes, whose use by the viewer equaled a form of performance in the context of the exhibition. In other words, these half-functional object-sculptures were Navarro’s first attempts to appropriate, however minimally, energy and movement through the artwork and then transfer its management to the viewer-user. Dating from the late 1990s and coinciding with the artist’s relocation to New York, Navarro’s first large sculptures still manifest the shared background of a generation orphaned by art criticism, used to circumvent material limitations and administrative obstacles with a do-it-yourself attitude common to various forms of underground pop culture and particularly music. Despite recurrent reference to icons of Western art history (such as Dan Flavin, Josef Albers, or Ellsworth Kelly), Navarro’s relation to this canon is rather anarchistic, as though the historical text were a repertoire of rock songs ready to be sampled....


Clark Maines

(b Bayonne, Jan 7, 1935; d Aug 10, 2009).

French medieval art historian and archaeologist. Pressouyre studied history and geography as well as archaeology and art history at Bordeaux (1960) and received his doctorate from Strasbourg in 1979. He taught at the Sorbonne as well as at Yale and Michigan universities. Pressouyre was renowned as a stimulating lecturer and supportive teacher. His medieval archaeology seminar brought together students and specialists, influencing many in the field for more than 20 years. His students’ admiration was expressed in a festschrift, Utilis est lapis in structura (2000).

Pressouyre’s early publications focused on 12th-century sculpture, particularly on the rich ensemble from the cloister of Châlons-en-Champagne, Notre-Dame-en-Vaux at Châlons-en-Champagne (formerly Châlons-sur-Marne), which he excavated and for which he created an on-site museum. Among the more than 80 articles he had published in major journals, his studies on stylistic trends in 12th-century sculpture in the Champagne region, and on the iconography of the medieval cloister, remain standards in the field....


Lisa Blackmore

(b Cali, Sept 2, 1955).

Colombian painter, sculptor, illustrator, and collage and installation artist. Roldán graduated in architecture from the Pontificia Universidad Javeriana in Bogotá in 1979, then moved to Paris to study art history at the Ecole du Louvre and La Sorbonne and modern engraving at Stanley W. Hayter’s Atelier 17.

Defying the use of signature themes or motifs, Roldán draws on a broad pool of references, from mythology to art history and literature, to create works that reflect on the transitory nature of life cycles, engaging with intimate processes of the passage of time and everyday detritus in order to create rich palimpsests and repurposed objects. His early paintings, such as Reflections (1989, 1990, and 1991), embraced abstraction, amorphous forms, bold color, and strong lines, that suggest the influence of the American abstract painters whose work he encountered after moving to Milwaukee, USA, in 1981. Quotidian experiences and recycled materials are recurrently present in such works as the time-based ...


Enrique Larrañaga

(b Caracas, Mar 20, 1922; d Caracas, Dec 19, 2008).

Venezuelan architect and educator. Sanabria is the most prominent figure among the second generation of Venezuelan architects formally trained in the discipline. Sanabria attended Engineering School in Caracas between 1941 and 1945. While working at a design and construction firm VRACA (Vegas y Rodríguez Amengual, Compañía Anónima), Sanabria’s talent was noticed by the owners, who sponsored him, to study at Harvard Graduate School of Design. He graduated from Harvard in 1947 and returned to Venezuela in 1947. Back in his native country, Sanabria joined the Department of Architecture and became the first Program Director of the School of Architecture, founded in 1954.

In 1948 he opened the first local firm exclusively dedicated to design, with his friend and colleague Diego Carbonell. The partnership lasted until 1953 and stood out for its modern proposals, fine detailing, and environmental responses to the local conditions; qualities that, with a particular sense of both regional and urban scales, characterized Sanabria’s designs....


Amy Rosenblum Martín

(b San Miguel de Tucumán, Sept 24, 1973).

Argentine conceptual artist, architect, and aeronautical inventor. Saraceno spent his early childhood in Italy, returning to Argentina as a teenager. In 1999 he earned his bachelor’s degree in architecture at the Universidad Nacional de Buenos Aires. He received postgraduate degrees in art and architecture from the Escuela Superior de Bellas Artes de la Nación Ernesto de la Carcova, Buenos Aires (2000); Städelschule, Frankfurt am Main (2003); and Università Iuav, Venice (2004).

Saraceno created visionary installations and events that raised pointed questions about sustainable traveling and living. He found answers to those questions in natural elements, such as clouds, bubbles, and spiderwebs, revealing unexpected poetic connections in his work. Over decades of work with spiders, for example, research led him to consider their webs as geometrical models to explain the unknowable origins of the universe. Aerocene (2015–) floated people into the air in giant silver Mylar balloons. The balloons were intended to prototype a means of traveling around the world fueled only by wind, radiation from the sun during the day, and radiation from earth at night. A significant feat of art, engineering, architecture, and science, ...