FORMES ET FIGURES DE L’IMAGINAIRE MARIN, DANS LE HAUT MOYEN ÂGE ET DANS LE MOYEN ÂGE CENTRAL
If fishes and sea monsters hold an extremely important place in Roman art, antique see imaginary world seems less rich than the medieval one. Medieval marine imagination did not only base on the Plinian assertion that every living being on earth has a marine counterpart, but it also incorporated Germanic and Celtic traditions that made the marine world a place inhabited by a strange fauna, some specimens of which have sometimes been confused with some monsters of Greco-Roman origin. Thus, marine hybrids are present in medieval thought and art, even though their presence often appears as an intellectual construction with a didactic purpose, or as pure fiction or simple ornamental devices.
BÂTIR FACE À LA MER : LA CATHÉDRALE NORMANDE DE CATANE EN SICILE. ÉTAT DE LA QUESTION
The construction of Catania cathedral is part of the Norman conquest of Sicily, as a religious and military center. With the reestablishment of the diocese (1092), the building was erected in the years 1086-1094 on the behalf of Roger 1st of Hauteville called in 1091 in Calabria by Ansger, Breton prior of Sant’Eufemia, to become the new bishop of Catania. The cathedral was inserted in the heart of the medieval city as a fortress for its strategic location close to the sea and port, and its relations to the coastal warning system. Despite the damage caused by earthquakes (the most serious one in 1693), after which the monument was reconstructed and kept its Romanesque parts (apses, transepts, joined structures and probably parts of the facade), a new research can be lead on the plan, elevations, and articulation of medieval spaces and their function. Original and unpublished documents from public or private archives can be used on this purpose to elaborate on different hypotheses related to other Norman Sicilian cathedrals and various contexts beyond the Alps.
L’ARCHITECTURE DANS LE PONENTE LIGURE AU XIe SIÈCLE
The Western part of Liguria presents a great architectural richness of the 11th century. In this area, one can find buildings with a basilical plan, with a single nave and, more rarely, two naves. These buildings generally do not show roofs made of vaults and whose walls are cut into rhythmic panels, with twin blind arcades on the top. Among the most important sites are the cathedral and the church of Saint Michael in Ventimiglia, San Paragorio of Noli and the buildings of the Finale Ligure area.
Daniel ISTRIA, Sophie CARON, Alexandra SOTIRAKIS
LA CATHÉDRALE DE MARIANA (CORSE). RETOUR SUR LE CONCEPT DE ROMAN D’IMPORTATION
For the Middle Ages, the sea is lived as a space of communication. It is exchanges place whose importance and rhythm fluctuate over the centuries, but which continue without any real stop. More than any other place, the island reveals the characteristics of these exchanges and in fact imposes itself as an ideal laboratory to analyse phenomena of diffusion and influence. In 2015, the archaeological study of the cathedral Santa Maria Assunta of Mariana, an emblematic building of Romanesque Corsican architecture, better known as Canonica, began. Consecrated in 1119, this church is the largest, most complex and best documented building on the island. Abandoned at the end of the 15th century and partially ruined during the 16th century, it has not received restoration campaigns until 1931 under the direction of H. Huignard, chief architect of the historical monuments department, then in the 1980s and the 1990s thanks to the intervention of J.-C. Yarmola, P. Colas and finally J. Moulin. Stylistic studies by C. Aru (1908), G. Moracchini-Mazel (1967) and R. Coroneo (2006) have stressed the importance of external influences, particularly from Pisa and to a lesser extent Lucca. Without contradicting this point of view, the new reading of the monument and the unprecedented analysis of construction techniques and works organization reveal a more complex situation. Beyond obvious references to Tuscan buildings, the collected data also could reveal more distant influences and probable importations of sculpted elements. It could also highlight the important part taken by local know-how. This new information invites to consider the displacements of men, ideas and materials between the continent and the island. This raises the question of the validity of the concept of “import Romanesque art”, which has profoundly influenced regional historiography of the 20th and beginning of the 21st century, since the publication of Prosper Mérimée’s Notes d’un voyage en Corse (1839).
L’ICONOGRAPHIE DU SACRIFICE D’ABRAHAM DANS L’ART ROMAN DU SUD-OUEST DE LA FRANCE ET DU NORD DE L’ESPAGNE (XIE-XIIIE SIÈCLES) :
NOUVEAUX ÉLÉMENTS DE RÉFLEXION
Medieval iconography of Abraham’s sacrifice (Genesis 22) and Romanesque sculpture of South West France and Spain are well studies subjects. However, new attention paid to the variety of medieval sources, to the functions and programs of these monumental images can renew the analysis on both sides of the Pyrenees of both famous works of art and unknown productions.
Immaculada LORÉS i OTZET
UN NOUVEAU CHAPITEAU DU CLOÎTRE ROMAN DE SANT PERE DE RODES (CATALOGNE) AVEC L’HISTOIRE DE NOÉ, AU MUSÉE DE CLUNY À PARIS
The Musée de Cluny in Paris acquired in 2014 a capital from a collection of Heidelberg that probably came from the cloister of Sant Pere de Rodes (Catalonia), which was added to the group of Catalan capitals that the museum has preserved since the nineteenth century. This paper analyses this capital, introducing it and bonding its figures to the nearby cycle of Noah from the cloisters of the Cathedral of Girona and the monastery of Sant Cugat del Vallès, tackling also the possible available models for the three cloisters.
LA CÔTE CATALANE AUX XIe-XIIe SIÈCLE : L’AUTRE FRONTIÈRE. ASPECTS ARCHITECTURAUX ET ARCHÉOLOGIQUES
We use to consider the medieval Catalonia as a frontier. The coast is also a border, with its dangers and its potentials. Catalonia in the tenth-twelfth centuries, therefore, has one border more, difficult to discern, but rich of opportunities. Regardind to the traditional image on the relationship between Catalonia and the sea, the Antiquity and late Antiquity, is a prosperous period in which the Catalan coast is the intermediary with the Mediterranean world; five centuries later, the thirteenth century marks the beginning of a Catalan-Aragonese. In the intermediary period it’s usual to consider that Catalonia turns its back on the sea. I would like to understand what the Catalan coast of the Romanesque period inherits from the earlier times, and to discern if something in the Romanesque period prefigures and explains the maritime development of the following centuries. A careful examination of sources outside the Catalan area, as the Pisan Liber Maiolichinus, and of architectural and archaeological remains, will re-evaluate maritime activity in Catalonia from around 1100, a century before the great Catalan-Aragonese maritime expansion.
JONAS ET LE POISSON
According to the Vulgate Jonah is swallowed by a piscis grandis (Jonas, II III) or a cetus (Matthew, XII), a word which means sea monster or large sea animal. In Romanesque Latin commentaries the words piscis or cetus are systematically used, whereas sometimes in the vernacular texts “whale” appears. The images of Jonah (sculpture, illumination, stainedglass window, enamel), very different to those of the Antiquity, show a fish or a terrifying monster. Jonah prefigures the Christ in a double way: being swallowed by the fish and cast out of it, he announces both Christ’s death and Christ’s resurrection. But the fascination for the marvellous mays account for the prominence of the fish episode, which is used in the sermons in order to charm the audience.
LE CULTE ET L’ICONOGRAPHIE DE L’ARCHANGE MICHEL SUR LE LITTORAL SUD-ORIENTAL DE L’ADRIATIQUE, ENTRE LE IXe ET LE XIe SIÈCLE
The author proposes an examination of various aspects of the worship of archangel Michael on the south-eastern coast of the Adriatic from the 9th to the 11th centuries by analyzing archaeological documents, church dedications, inscriptions, liturgical and narrative sources, toponymy and iconographic documents. At this moment, this area is divided between Byzantines and Slavs, Serbs and Croats. Michael, the intercessor par excellence, was venerated as the leader of heavenly armies, as the protector of royal power, cities and sanctuaries, as a member of the heavenly court and as the psychopomp. The observance of garganic tradition in the location of Benedictine monasteries devoted to St. Michael indicates indirectly that the archangel was also invoked for his healing functions.
Javier MARTÍNEZ DE AGUIRRE
LES DANGERS DES VAGUES : CONSIDÉRATIONS SUR UN CHAPITEAU DE LA CATHÉDRALE DE JACA
The scene beautifully carved on the so called “capital of the waves”, located on the central pillar of the southern arch of Jaca cathedral, has already received many interpretations. On the main side of the capital, a young woman tries to call the attention of a young man who appoints the opposite direction. On the lateral sides, young satyrs pushed by devils plays the double flute. The hypothesis made in this article considers the location of the capital in the center of the nave, close to the door leading to the market place, and assumes that the sculpture is an allegory of the temptations which assail the believer during his/her life. The scene would then be part of the visual discourse displayed on some capitals of the church and would echo the Benedictine spirituality promoted by bishop Pedro (1086-1099).
ARCHITECTURE ET SCULPTURE DANS LA SARDAIGNE DES XIe-XIIe SIÈCLES, INTERACTIONS ENTRE L’ÎLE ET LA TERRE FERME DANS LE CADRE DE L’ART ROMAN DANS LA MÉDITERRANÉE OCCIDENTALE
The study of the great sites of 11th and 12th centuries in the island of Sardinia, with the construction and completion of cathedrals and abbeys, allowed to assume the presence of craftsmen from extra-island territories. It is often difficult to dissociate the figure of the architect from that of the sculptor, who can sometimes be the same person. It is nonetheless possible to recognize in church construction some refined works which result to be the most consistent evidence of medieval sculpture in Sardinia. The paper analyzes the architecture and sculptural elements that survive in Sardinia from the early phases of Romanesque period, highlighting new elements and recent discoveries. At this moment, the island was a land of economic and cultural expansion for Pisa, and it was probably considered as an appropriate place to replicate and perhaps to experiment architectural and sculpted works in a central position in the Mediterranean and European artistic decor of the 11th and 12th centuries.
LES PARTIES ROMANES DE L’ANCIENNE CATHÉDRALE DE SAINT-BERTRAND-DE-COMMINGES
Very few remain from the Romanesque cathedral built by Bishop Bertrand de L’ Isle-Jourdain (c. 1050-1123), canonized at the beginning of the 13th century and whose name is preserved in the city name. One can only see the massive silhouette of the bell tower as well as the lower parts of the outer walls of the nave on which the Gothic nave, rebuilt in the 14th century, was erected. The bibliography has consistently reported two construction campaigns for this period: a first campaign during Bertrand’s episcopate, with the construction of a wooden roofed nave and a wall tower for the bells, and a second in the second half of the 12th century with the addition of the bell tower above the first bay, the portal, and the vault. However, an archaeological study of the Romanesque parts of the building allowed to propose a different chronology, and to attribute the construction of the cathedral to a single campaign. The analysis of the structure of the first part of the nave and the integration of the bell tower into the nave led to the site in perspective with contemporary architectural creations in the southwest of France. Thus, it may be possible to understand its elaboration and function, but also to make the chronology of the construction of the Romanesque cathedral more accurate, and to propose its restitution.
SAINT-HONORAT DE LÉRINS, UN MONASTÈRE INSULAIRE : DU STÉRÉOTYPE ARCHITECTURAL AUX SPÉCIFICITÉS MONUMENTALES
This paper intends to analyze the architectural program of Saint-Honorat complex on the island of Lérins, mostly built during the 11th century. The article has two sides. On the one hand, it underlines how this maritime and monastic organization can be considered as a stereotype when compared to other prototypes already established elsewhere. This aspect is particularly clear in the organization of the cloister. Nevertheless, beyond this first impression, the monastery demonstrates its singularity throughout many aspects. The history of the monastery, which foundations belong to the earliest moments of western monasticism, led the monks to look for solutions proclaiming the monastery antiquity. The insularity, linked in the same way to the origins of the monastery, has also implied choices regarding the interactions with the laymen based on ambivalent relations combining distance and formal presence.
Xavier BARRAL i ALTET
CONCLUSIONS : UNE MER HABITÉE POUR CEINTURER LE MONDE CONNU
Beyond the general synthesis on 2016 “Journées romanes”, conclusions will open the way towards some iconographical aspects of water and sea that concerns geography and cosmology, two medieval educated curiosities that underlie the general iconography of marine identity and its inhabitants. Among the four elements, earth and sea are the most frequently personified ones. In many cases, the division between earth and water seems to be integrated into the Creation narrative in the Book of Genesis, when on the third day God separated water from the continent, which he named Earth (Gn 1: 9-10). In other cases, monumental art reproduces real geographical maps in which the water of the sea girdles the known world. In Turin, in the mosaic of St. Savior, a circular composition is inscribed in a square; winds fill the blind spots. The large circle represents the ocean and its islands, which are identifiable by inscriptions. The ocean/winds ensemble is the essential feature of medieval world maps. Inside the circle representing the ocean, the decoration of the mosaic is no longer rendered in cartographic terms. One would expect to find the continents there, but one sees instead a series of eight large interlaced circles enclosing animals (birds, griffins, lions, bulls or elephants) to signify the fauna of the different countries: they are disguised cartographic symbols. At the center of the pavement, a representation of the wheel of Fortune, an important image in medieval iconographic strategy to express in a circular movement a cosmic and geographical context has been depicted: the wheel of life is represented in a layout that is often close, if not identical, to that of the Year and months. Water can also be represented by rivers reaching the sea. The rivers of Paradise are often represented at the four corners of a composition. If in general we can see the sources of life of the Christian, when they occupy this site, they assimilate to quadripartite images, linked to number 4 symbolism: four evangelists, four cardinal points, four virtues, four seasons, four elements. Sometimes rivers are represented in the form of human heads or masks, with animal ears and horns which, according to ancient tradition, represent the source of the river, i.e. the sea and the water.