The Early Royal Society and Visual Culture
Perspectives on Science
MIT Press Journals
MetadataShow full item record
Kusukawa, S. (2019). The Early Royal Society and Visual Culture. Perspectives on Science, 27 (3), 350-394. https://doi.org/10.1162/posc_a_00311
Recent studies have fruitfully examined the intersection between early modern science and visual culture by elucidating the functions of images in shaping and disseminating scientific knowledge. Given its rich archival sources, it is possible to extend this line of research in the case of the Royal Society to an examination of attitudes towards images as artefacts –manufactured objects worth commissioning, collecting and studying. Drawing on existing scholarship and material from the Royal Society Archives, I discuss Fellows’ interests in prints, drawings, varnishes, colorants, images made out of unusual materials, and methods of identifying the painter from a painting. Knowledge of production processes of images was important to members of the Royal Society, not only as connoisseurs and collectors, but also as those interested in a Baconian mastery of material processes, including a “history of trades”. Their antiquarian interests led to discussion of painters’ styles, and they gradually developed a visual memorial to an institution through portraits and other visual records.
External DOI: https://doi.org/10.1162/posc_a_00311
This record's URL: https://www.repository.cam.ac.uk/handle/1810/290120