Mary Philadelphia Merrifield: color history as expertise

Loske, Alexandra (2017) Mary Philadelphia Merrifield: color history as expertise. Visual Resources: an international journal on images and their uses, 33 (1-2). pp. 11-26. ISSN 0197-3762

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The aim of this article is to provide a brief overview and initial examination of some primary sources relating to British color researcher Mary Philadelphia Merrifield (1804–1889) that have not previously been considered. These are approximately 150 letters written by Merrifield to her husband, who had remained in England with some of their children, during her two research journeys to continental Europe between 1844 and 1846. By selecting a few representative letters and passages, this article will argue that knowledge as well as financial and social circumstances were instrumental in the development of the culture of connoisseurship both inside and outside the museum environment. One of the aims is to highlight how Merrifield negotiated access to libraries, archives and art galleries and how her expertise, acquired while working on her translation of Cennino Cennini’s Il libro dell’arte and other previous projects, together with her family and her class, helped her on this research journey.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: colour theory, connoisseurship, Women and Travel, Mary Philadelphia Merrifield (1804–1889), John Merrifield (1788/9–1877), Cennino Cennini (c.1370–c.1440), Charles Lock Eastlake (1793–1865)
Schools and Departments: School of History, Art History and Philosophy > Art History
Subjects: N Fine Arts > ND Painting > ND1115 Study and teaching
N Fine Arts > ND Painting > ND1470 Technique and materials
N Fine Arts > ND Painting > ND1630 Examination and conservation of paintings
N Fine Arts > NX Arts in general
N Fine Arts > NX Arts in general > NX0440 History of the arts
N Fine Arts > NX Arts in general > NX0700 Patronage of the arts
Depositing User: Alexandra Loske
Date Deposited: 28 Oct 2016 07:49
Last Modified: 29 Jun 2017 11:55
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