School of History, Classics & Archaeology

A.G. Leventis Conference 2017

In the wake of the so-called ‘visual turn’ (one turn among many others), the study of ancient images has developed increasingly in the last decades, and a great number of conferences have been devoted to many aspects of image production in the ancient world. In particular, Greek Vase-painting has been one of the most fruitful fields, generating numerous conferences on Ancient Greek and Related Pottery, on Athenian Potters and Painters, as well as the German CVA conferences, and many more. All these meetings have produced original knowledge and interesting new insights. In recent years, the accent has been put on contexts - archaeological, religious, social, historical,- more than on style or iconography, on the viewer and the user, more than on the maker. The only shortcoming of all these enterprises is their exclusiveness and overspecialization on vase-painting. The study of vase painting is obviously the richest field, and is constantly reshaped by new discoveries ; this area also  has been deeply transformed by the on-line accessibility of the Beazley Archive pottery database.

Less discussed is the interaction and comparison between various media, e.g. sculptures, reliefs, gems, coins, terra-cottas, vases, and wall paintings. Our aim is to open a broad discussion between specialists of these different media and address questions that cross over the boundaries of overspecialised fields. There is no unified concept of  ‘the image’, but a wide variety of ‘images’ or more precisely of objects bearing images. We would like to sketch an outline of the variety of visual experiences at stake in the various media used in Antiquity. We do not plan to extend the former ‘Word and Image’ Leventis conference (Rutter & Sparkes 2000) but rather want to focus on visual objects, mainly in ancient Greece, without excluding other periods and areas.

More precisely, we would like to shed light on the specificities of each medium, the way meaning is produced, according to the nature of the medium, its use, its context, its enunciative structure. We would also like to discuss the methodologies used by different scholars to produce meaning; one century after Carl Robert’s Archäologische Hermeneutik, it is time to assess as clearly as possible the way that images ‘make,’ that is, create, sense, and the way we think we can access their meaning(s). Each contribution should try to address one or several of the above questions, giving priority to precise examples and clear comparisons.


  • Marcello Barbanera (Rome)                          
  • Judith Barringer (Edinburgh) - Profile
  • François de Callataÿ (Brussels)
  • Véronique Dasen (Fribourg)
  • Nikolaus Dietrich (Heidelberg)
  • Luca Giuliani (Berlin)
  • Annette Haug (Kiel)
  • Tonio Hölscher (Heidelberg)
  • Jeffrey Hurwit (Eugene - Oregon)
  • Ken Lapatin (Los Angeles)
  • François Lissarrague (Paris)
  • Mauro Menichetti (Salerno)
  • Marion Meyer (Vienna)
  • Thomas Morard (Liège)
  • Arthur Muller (Lille)
  • Richar Neer (Chicago)
  • Dimitri Paleothodoros (Volos)
  • Verity Platt (Cornell)
  • Vicky Sabetai (Athens)
  • Stefan Schmidt (Munich)
  • Alan Shapiro (New York)
  • Adrian Staehli (Harvard)
  • Mark Stansbury-O’Donnell (St Thomas - Minnesota)
  • Andrew Stewart (Berkeley)
  • Richard Veymiers (Liège)
  • Dyfri Williams (Brussels)


Further information will be made available as it is confirmed. 



A.G. Leventis Conference 2017

The next Leventis Conference - 'Images at the cross-roads: Meanings, media, methods' - will take please in Edinburgh, 9-12 November, 2017. (Published 8 March, 2017)