From Ireland Coming: Irish Art from the Early Christian to the Late Gothic Period and Its European Context

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Colum Hourihane
Princeton University Press, 2001 - Art, Irish - 356 pages
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Lying at Europe's remote western edge, Ireland long has been seen as having an artistic heritage that owes little to influences beyond its borders. This publication, the first to focus on Irish art from the eighth century AD to the end of the sixteenth century, challenges the idea that the best-known Irish monuments of that period-the high crosses, the Book of Kells, the Tara Brooch, the round towers-reflect isolated, insular traditions. Seventeen essays examine the iconography, history, and structure of these familiar works, as well as a number of previously unpublished pieces, and demonstrate that they do have a place in the main currents of European art.

While this book reveals unexpected links between Ireland, Late-Antique Italy, the Byzantine Empire, and the Anglo-Saxons, its center is always the artistic culture of Ireland itself. It includes new research on the Sheela-na-gigs, often thought to be merely erotic sculptures; on the larger cultural meanings of the Tuam Market Cross and its nineteenth-century re-erection; and on late-medieval Irish stone crosses and metalwork. The emphasis on later monuments makes this one of the first volumes to deal with Irish art after the Norman invasion.

The contributors are Cormac Bourke, Mildred Budny, Tessa Garton, Peter Harbison, Jane Hawkes, Colum Hourihane, Catherine E. Karkov, Heather King, Susanne McNab, Raghnall Floinn, Emmanuelle Pirotte, Roger Stalley, Kees Veelenturf, Dorothy Hoogland Verkerk, Niamh Whitfield, Maggie McEnchroe Williams, and Susan Youngs.

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Irish Crosses and Early Christian Sarcophagi
Some Observations on the Irish Round Towers
New Light on the Temptation Scene
The Iconography of the Three Children in the Fiery Furnace in NinthCentury Ireland
Shades of Iconographical Ambiguity
The Otherness of Irish Art in the Twelfth Century
Some Recurring Themes in Irish Romanesque Sculpture
The Role of Cultural Patriotism in the Study of Irish High Crosses
An Irish Emblem of Status in Its European Context
Fine Irish Metalwork from the Medway Kent England
An Iconography of Identity? The CrossHead from Mayo Abbey
Reasons Functions Efficiency
Goldsmiths Work in Ireland 12001400
Images of Land and Gender in Medieval Ireland
Late Medieval Irish Crosses and Their European Background

Celtic Antecedents to the Treatment of the Human Figure in Early Irish Art
Deciphering the Art of Interlace

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About the author (2001)

Colum Hourihane is Director of the Index of Christian Art, Princeton University.

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