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All that glitters… in Berlin

16 September 2017

The third Dressing the Early Modern Network conference, “All That Glitters…”: Visual Representations of Dress in the Early Modern and the Boundaries of Reliability was organised in Berlin on 14-15 September 2017. Refashioning Renaissance team, strengthened with our fresh doctoral candidate Anne-Kristine Sindvald Larsen, took part of the conference, which was held at Kunstgewerbemuseum. The conference catered a wide range of interesting papers that gave an opportunity to learn and reflect.

Kunstgewerbemuseum and the adjunct Lipperheidesche Kostümbibliothek offered an ideal setting for the conference. The Kunstgewerbemuseum houses an extensive collection of tapestries and a dress collection from 18th century to present day, and it was a pleasure to get to know the collection on the intermissions of the conference. Lipperheidesche Kostümbibliothek consists of a wonderful collection of original source documents and secondary literature on clothing and fashion by Franz and Frieda Lipperheide.

Paula Hohti introducing Jane Malcolm-Davies.

The papers presented during the conference examined different aspects of visual representations of dress and brought forward intriguing questions and new approaches. Themes varied from the interpretation and reliability of visual images as source to case studies of specific garments, as well as depictions of the others. Our Principal Investigator, Professor Paula Hohti had a pleasure to chair a session that examined interestingly the different aspects of visual representations and how they can be challenged by new research that cross-references different sources. Dr. Jane-Malcolm Davies, who is going to be working in the Refashioning the Renaissance project as a Post-Doctoral Researcher, presented some of her research on knitted caps, and the felting process that was used on wool to mimic velvet. More information on Jane’s Knitting in Early Modern Europe can be found here.

Some examples of fulled caps presented by Jane-Malcolm Davies.

Our growing team, who now met for the first time, thoroughly enjoyed the stimulating discussions, the chances to connect with other scholars, and the sunny Berlin.