Special Interest Days 2016

These days are held in Borwick and Priest Hutton Memorial Hall and are led by experts in their fields.  Subjects recently studied include: The Grand Tour, Be Your Own Art Detective; A Passion for Tea; Byzantine Mosaics; Artists and the Landscape; English Churches; Music Inspired by Paintings; Treasures of the Silk Road. These events have proved to be both popular and informative

Tea, coffee and a full lunch are provided as part of the days.Places for these events are usually limited, and therefore early booking is advised.

In 2016 we have two special interest days. 

Tuesday 5th April 2016

Gaudi and Barcelona

Study day led by Clyde Binfield OBE PhD

Man of Kent, Cambridge graduate, cruise lecturer, Professor Emeritus in History at the University of Sheffield, Clyde is a straight-up-and-down historian returning to some of his first and last loves – buildings, their creators and their settings.  

This study day will be of particular interest to those who are going on the LDFAS trip to Barcelona later in the year. Clyde Binfield will explore the questions raised by Gaudí’s controversial style of architecture.

First we will look at Barcelona: Climate for Gaudi: the historic Roman and Medieval Mediterranean port which became a crucible for industrial revolution and political unrest, with a culture and an architecture paralleled but never bettered in contemporary Europe.

Then, in Barcelona, Catalonia, and Gaudi we will focus on Gaudi himself: if there is more to Barcelona than Gaudi, there is certainly more to Gaudi than La Sagrada Familia.

Finally we will look at Gaudi and Beyond: was he unique or has he a posterity - perhaps in the bridges, airports, railway stations, and art galleries of Santiago Calatrava of Valencia?

The booking form can be downloaded via the link at the foot of this page.



Tuesday 8th November 2016

Understanding Medieval Imagery

Study day led by David Bostwick BA MA PhD

David is a NADFAS lecturer, specialising in the Cultural History of the Mediaeval, Tudor and Stuart periods, and a consultant on historic buildings to The National Trust, English Heritage and Historic Scotland. He is a specialist in Medieval imagery and interior furnishings and decoration 1400-1700. He is a tour leader and also lectures in the USA and Australia.

David gave us a wonderful lecture on The Green Man in Art in April 2015. It went down so well we have invited        him back to deliver this study day.

Lecture 1: The Imagery of Medieval Christianity

This lecture looks not only at Saints and their emblems, but also at how people visualised Angels, the Dragon, the Devil and complex ideas such as “The Three in One”. A visual language was created to convey stories and concepts from the Bible to a largely illiterate audience. The representation of Demons was a fertile ground for the artistic imagination, but pride of place went to visualisation of the Soul – shown as a tiny naked human being – and best seen in the paintings of Bosch.

Lecture 2: The Imagery of Sin & Folly

The Seven Deadly Sins and the Fool were rich topics for the medieval artist’s creativity. In the margins of illuminated books, such as the Luttrell Psalter, and on misericords and roof bosses, hybrid creatures such as the mermaid abound. They are often shown doing strange things such as playing a pair of bellows with a crutch, whilst the Fool squeezes a cat and bites its tail to make it sing. Why does a group of mice hang a cat on the gallows? Why does a monkey masquerade as a physician? Why does a man try to fit a horseshoe onto the foot of a goose? And, indeed, why do people stick out their tongues?

Lecture 3: The Green Man

(Note: This is not a repeat of last year’s lecture but substantially different: Green Man mark II)

In the 20th century, medieval images of the human face surrounded by and disgorging leaves became popularly known as “The Green Man” because of their superficial similarity to the leaf-clad “Jack-in-the-Green” seen in Morris dances and Mummers plays. However, the origins of the foliate mask can be traced to Roman sources. Thereafter, the trade in Coptic textiles spread the image across Europe so that by the early 12th century “The Green Man” could be seen in Romanesque sculpture, manuscript illumination, ivories and metalwork. The Christian notion that Sin could be likened to a tree planted in the heart – with each Vice seen as a separate branch – led to images of trees growing from within and emerging as leaves through the mouth. This entirely Christian image reminded the onlooker not to be sinful, and enjoyed huge popularity in the art of the Middle Ages.

The booking form can be downloaded via the link below.

ldfas webmaster,
17 Jan 2016, 08:23
ldfas webmaster,
10 Jun 2016, 12:58