Lectures/Feb 24, 2017

Rome, Constantinople, Troy

Rome, Constantinople, Troy lead image

Rome, Constantinople, Troy: Triangulating Past and Present in the Fourteenth Century, lecture by Elena Boeck (Dumbarton Oaks), Harvard University, February 27, 2017, 5:00–6:30 pm

Elena N. Boeck (Ph.D., Yale, professor) specializes in the arts of the medieval Mediterranean world. Her first book, Imagining the Byzantine Past: The Perception of History in the Illustrated Manuscripts of Skylitzes and Manasses (Cambridge University Press 2015) investigates the rise of illustrated histories in the Mediterranean world from the twelfth through the fourteenth centuries and explores the ideological motivations for visualizing Byzantine history in Sicily and Bulgaria. The second book, The Bronze Horseman of Justinian in Constantinople: The Cross-Cultural Biography of a Monument (under contract), explores the changing identities and lasting legacies of this key imperial sculptural monument of Constantinople. It analyzes the bronze horseman's changing cultural signification and the monument's contribution to discursive constructions of Constantinople by various pre-modern audiences.

Her other research interests and publications explore cross-cultural exchange and contestation of established cultural narratives including selective appropriation of Byzantine narratives of power and their images in Norman Sicily, medieval Bulgaria and Rus'; icons of the Three-Handed Mother of God; the rediscovery of Byzantium on the nineteenth-century Parisian stage; transformations of Muscovite devotional images under the influence of counter-Reformation print culture.

She served as the consulting curator for the Art Institute of Chicago's "Heaven and Earth: Art of Byzantium from Greek Collections," September 27, 2014-May 10, 2015.

She is currently serving as the Director of Byzantine Studies at Dumbarton Oaks.