Ornamenta sacra. Iconological Study of the Liturgical Heritage from the Southern Netherlands (c.1450-c.1566)
This dissertation is part of an interdisciplinary BRAIN project, a research collaboration of the KU Leuven, UCL and KIK-IRPA Brussels. The project aims at conducting an iconological and anthropological research devoted to the late medieval and early modern liturgical heritage (ornamenta sacra) from the Southern Netherlands. The historical framework - from c.1450 till c.1566 - spans the fascinating development of an urban society where the limits of the socially acceptable ‘body’ are scanned. The chosen point of departure is an in-depth analysis of liturgical artifacts that beg to be ‘consumed’, such as rosaries, pax and ex-votos. This inquiry has as its principal focus the layman’s perception on the matter and the sources of its formation. The subject is being approached at the intersection of well-ordered orthodoxy on the one hand and spontaneous, emotionally charged grass roots on the other. In short, this study tends to shed light on the sensory and ritual aspects of several ‘undervalued’ liturgical objects.