Drapery: classicism and barbarism in visual culture





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Peer reviewed



This is a unique book in its field, in which no serious academic research has been published. (See the small pamphlet 'The Draped Figure', Cecil Gould, National Gallery London, 1952.) Using material from fine art, photography, sculpture, dress, and film, the research is informed by concepts drawn from psychoanalysis, women’s studies, Marxism, postcolonial theory and cultural studies. Primary research was carried out in archival collections in Paris, including the Bibliotheque Doucet, Bibliotheque Nationale de France, Musee Rodin, Musee de l’Homme, the Bibliotheque du Film, and the Musee de la Mode et du Textile. I interviewed important contemporary artists working with cloth and drapery e.g. Alison Watt, Liz Rideal. The research and the publication were supported by a grant from the AHRC. Keynote lectures drawn from this research were delivered at the National Gallery, and at the Ionian Centre in Athens (as part of a conference and exhibition Ptychoseis=Folds+Pleats during the Cultural Olympiad June 2004). In addition I curated an exhibition to accompany the book at The City Gallery, Leicester, 2002 'Fold: Drapery in Contemporary Art', (exhibition and catalogue supported by regional arts lottery funding). Artists included Helen Chadwick, James Welling, Yve Lomax, Zineb Sedira, Ali Zaidi. I co-organised an international conference (with Professor Alison Yarrington) at the National Gallery London, 'Drapery in Visual Culture: Contexts, Clothing, Corporealities', 30-31.8.2002. This was supported by The British Academy and the National Gallery. Internationally known artists (including Lia Cook and Liz Rideal) and scholars presented research papers. Reviewed in The Guardian Saturday Review 2.2.2002 p.13 “amazingly pertinent”, “fascinating”, and in 'Textile' vol.1 no1, 2003, pp204-8 “…one is left with admiration at the skill and ambition of the author ... One can only recommend this publication to writers, makers and art historians…”


RAE 2008, UoA 63 Art and Design


Doy, M.G. (2002) Drapery: Classicism and Barbarism in Visual Culture, London: I.B Tauris.


Research Institute