Alternative stigmatics

Wednesday 8 June 2011 18.00

Cordelia Warr (BSR Balsdon Fellow/University of Manchester)

Saint Francis is the stigmatic most depicted in Italy between the thirteenth and the sixteenth centuries. Yet there were up to one hundred and fifty stigmatics recorded in Europe between Francis’ death and 1600 with near parity in numbers between stigmatics associated with the Franciscan Order and those associated with the Dominican Order. Dominican…-authored manuscripts and printed books of the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries show considerable interest in stigmata which is indicative of a debate about the nature, definition, and importance of stigmatization within the Order. Yet the Dominicans encountered considerable opposition from the Franciscans when they overtly promoted their own stigmatics. This paper uses one case study of a fifteenth-century altarpiece to explore the ways in which painting could be used to draw attention to stigmatics other than Saint Francis and to explore the means by, and the reasons for which this was done.

Art history lecture