"The Decorated Page" of Medieval Images and Graphic Novels (9/15/11; Medieval Congress, May 2012)
"The Decorated Page" of Medieval Images and Graphic Novels: "Sequential Theory" in dialogue with medieval art International Medieval Congress in Kalamazoo, Michigan 10-13 May 2012
We can follow the history of the “Decorated Page” from illuminated medieval manuscripts to the graphic novel, but what if we skip the pesky intervening years from one to the other? That is, what can the theories and analysis of medieval manuscripts, wall paintings or other medieval visual mediums tell us about how we read the graphic novel, and how might the theories behind contemporary graphic novel analysis help us read medieval illustrations and art?
Standing on the shoulders of traditional analysis of medieval images, the use of the visual theories that support analysis of the graphic novel is a way of engaging the images in a postmodern (post medieval) way. Interpreting a manuscript image is probably the most common use, but we can see the potential of “sequential imagery” analysis being used on wall paintings, sculpture, frescoes, friezes and icons.