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CFP: Drawn to Blue

Made from discarded blue rags, early modern blue paper was a humble material. Despite that, its manufacture required expert knowledge and its impact on European draftsmanship was transformative.

This call seeks proposals for 20-minute papers that address the history of European blue paper from the fourteenth century until 1800. Open to art historians, curators, conservators, conservation scientists, paper historians, papermakers, and dyers, successful proposals will demonstrate original archival research and/or object-based approach to their discussion of works on blue paper. While all topics will be considered, organizers encourage papers related to the following subjects:

● blue paper production outside the Italian peninsula and the Netherlands;

● color shift in blue paper and its implications;

● technical and/or scientific examination of blue paper;

● artistic uses of blue paper;

● non-artistic uses of blue paper;

● blue paper as means of transcultural exchange;

● intersection between blue paper production and textile trade and technological developments.

Co-organized by the J. Paul Getty Museum and the University of Amsterdam, this interdisciplinary online symposium will take place November 12–13, 2024, over two morning sessions Pacific Standard Time.

Proposals should include: Author’s name, title, and an abstract not to exceed 500 words. Submissions should be sent to by July 31, 2024. Please put “Drawn to Blue” in the subject. Accepted speakers will be notified by mid-August.

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