Rosshofgasse (Schnitz), Seminarraum S 01
Fachbereich Alte Geschichte, Sabine Huebner
Synergetic Spaces, Peripheral Images: The Politics of Late Roman and Early Christian Mosaics of the Eastern Levant
The geographically peripheral and historically transitory spaces of the late-antique Eastern Levant created a setting for flourishing and highly advanced mosaic production, the results of which adorned early Christian church floors in particular. Relying on and referring to sophisticated Roman mosaic craftwork and further preceding aesthetic values, the late-antique floor mosaics of the (Sub-)Byzantine Levant exemplify cultural-historical multidimensionalities and likewise provided patterns for subsequent Islamic art. Associated at the eikones Graduate School for the History and Theory of the Image, the Ph.D. project presented seeks to approach and comprehend the mosaic imagery in terms of specific patterns of social communication, religious authority and cultural identity, thus engaging with both the translatability of socio-political imagery and the significance and scope of geographically and politically peripheral spaces for stimulating, developing and expanding image production as such. More specifically and focusing on the archaeological sites of Umm er-Rasas (Church of Bishop Sergius; Complex of the St Stephen Church) and Madaba (Church of the Map; Church of the Virgin Mary and Hippolytus Hall), the talk will discuss and examine the imagery in terms of its historical, religious and aesthetic ambiguities.
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