Reconsidering the Concept of Decline and the Arts of the Palaiologan Era

University of Birmingham
Arts and Law, Lectures Talks and Workshops, Research
Friday 24th (09:00) - Saturday 25th February 2017 (16:00)
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Maria Alessia Rossi - and Andrea Mattiello -

In the last centuries of the Byzantine era, the political entity of the Empire of the Romaioi released cultural and artistic energies migrating towards new frontiers of intellectual achievements. This conference looks at the innovation of these works of art alongside the notion of decline and decay frequently associated with this period.


  • Andrea Mattiello – University of Birmingham
  • Maria Alessia Rossi – The Courtauld Institute of Art 

Keynote Speakers:

  • Niels Gaul – University of Edinburgh
  • Cecily Hilsdale – McGill University
  • Angeliki Lymberopoulou – The Open University 

This one and a half day conference includes a symposium and a workshop. We will examine and contextualise the artistic and cultural production of the geopolitical centres that were controlled by or in contact with the late Byzantine Empire, such as the Adriatic and Balkan regions, the major islands of Cyprus and Crete, and the regions surrounding the cities of Constantinople, Thessaloniki, and Mystras. This conference will explore the many intellectual implications that are encoded in the innovative artistic production of the Palaiologan Era, which are often simplified by a rigid understanding of what is Byzantine and what is not.

The Symposium – taking place on the afternoon of the 24 and the morning of the 25 February - will bring together established scholars, early-career scholars, and postgraduate students. Three keynotes will provide the methodological framework for the discussion; while the selected papers will focus solely on the visual expressions and cultural trajectories of the artworks produced during the late Palaiologan Era. 

The Workshop, taking place on the afternoon of the 25 February, will offer the opportunity to further the discussion in a more informal setting and for a selected number of Master students to interact and offer brief presentations.

Download the full schedule.

To book your free place at this event, please register here

With thanks to our funders: TheSociety for the Promotion of Byzantine StudiesThe A. G. Leventis FoundationThe Mary Jaharis Center for Byzantine Art and CultureThe Courtauld Institute of Art and the University of Birmingham