Having studied the History of Art, Architecture & Design at Kingston University, Surrey (UK), I embarked on a full-time Master of Arts degree in Medieval & Early Modern Studies at the University of Kent where the subject of my dissertation was the life and works of the artist, Levina Teerlinc (1520-1576). I am continuing to research this female artist who was the first to be appointed to an official position of artist to any European court in 1546, when she first appears in the accounts of Henry VIII as king’s paintrix.
In April 2019 I presented a paper at an international conference held at the National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, London, titled ‘Hidden in Plain Sight‘, on the visual evidence of trade with the New World and Far East prior to 1522 when Magellan circumnavigated the world. Here’s the link to the paper outline. https://melanievtaylor.co.uk/2019/04/17/hidden-in-plain-sight-visual-evidence-of-travellers-tales-trade-in-birds-other-marvellous-beasts/
Should the global pandemic of Covid-19 virus subside by July then I have been asked to present my wider research into the visual evidence of trade at the annual medieval symposium at Harlaxton http://harlaxton.org.uk. There are images in various illuminated manuscripts that show there was more than just the physical trade, and some of these paintings, be they marginal references or full page illuminations, are clearly inspired by travellers tales. However, we will have to wait until May until we know whether this year’s symposium will go ahead.
I live in Surrey with my terrier and have taught the following courses in art and medieval history to various adult education groups: Art & Architecture in Renaissance 1350-1500; The Exchange of Ideas between Southern & Northern Europe – Giotto & Van Eyck to Michelangelo & Hans Holbein the Younger; The Italian High Renaissance & Mannerism 1500 – 1600; The Stranger Painters of the Tudor Court (stranger is a way of describing foreigners); The Marketing of Monarchy; Elizabeth I – the Age of Gloriana; The Normans in Europe; The Reconquest of Spain; The Rise of the Venetian Republic; The Albigensian Crusade; France 1450 – 1500; The Golden Age of Dutch Art and How the Impressionists documented the Industrial Revolution. In addition I give study days on Hans Holbein the Younger, Nicholas Hilliard and the history of the Tudor Miniature. I am frequently asked to give talks to art clubs and various other groups on art and history.
I have written articles for various popular websites such as QueenAnneBoleyn.com, TudorsDynasty, On the Tudor Trail and the Tudor Society and am working with a documentary maker researching a previously unknown Tudor portrait when funds allow. These researches take time and a case of knowing where to look and being able to read and understand the original documents, if they exist. In addition, I’ve researched paintings in private collections and am continuing my research into the Wadlow portrait as and when time and funds permit.
If you are interested in coming to any of my monthly talks for my own art history group, Ashtead Art Lovers, and joining in the discussion, visit Ashtead Art Lovers Monthly Talks to see what we will be looking at each month. You can also see what we have looked at during the past 12 years on the “What we have looked at before” page. There is a list of Study Days for those interested in taking a deeper inquiry into these subjects. These take place in my home, but I am very happy to travel to give any of these talks to interested groups. If you would like to discuss dates etc. please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.