The Legacy of al-Andalus: Craftsmanship and architectural fragments from Islamic Spain Dr Anna McSweeney, University of Sussex
York Islamic Art Circle
Ceilings can tell an extraordinary story. Crowning intimate and important spaces, in palaces made for rulers, these architectural wonders were made with exquisite craftsmanship by Muslim craftsmen for the palaces of al-Andalus, Castile and Aragon. But what happens to them once those rulers have disappeared? This lecture will consider the legacy of these architectural fragments with a focus on ceilings made under Islamic and post-Islamic Spain which were dismantled and dispersed among museums across the world. What kind of stories can they tell, and why is it important to tell them today?
About the speaker
Dr Anna McSweeney
Dr Anna McSweeney is a Lecturer in Art History at the University of Sussex. A specialist in the art and architecture of the western Mediterranean Islamic world, her publications include The Alhambra Cupola from Granada to Berlin (Verlag Kettler, 2019 –in press) and Spain and Orientalism, an edited volume of Art in Translation (2017). From 2015-2018 she was a research fellow at the Warburg Institute in London with the Bilderfahrzeuge Project, where her work included co-curating an exhibition at the Lethaby Gallery, London on Metadata: How we Relate to Images (2018), supported by the German Federal Ministry of Education. From 2013-14 she worked at the Museum of Islamic Art in Berlin (M.I.K.) as an 'Art Histories and Aesthetic Practices' fellow of the Forum Transregionale Studien, Berlin. A graduate in the History of Art and Architecture with English Literature from Trinity College Dublin (BA) and in the History of Islamic Art and Architecture from SOAS, University of London (MA), she received her PhD from SOAS in 2012.