Canadian Shakespeare News

Look Here Upon this Picture: A Symposium on the Sanders Portrait of Shakespeare

“Look here upon this picture:”

A Symposium on the Sanders Portrait of Shakespeare

sanders_1After many years of persistent effort the University of Guelph is delighted to announce “Look here upon this picture:” An International Symposium on the Sanders Portrait of Shakespeare, to be held on Thursday, November 28, 2013 at the Vivian and David Campbell Conference Facility (Munk School of Global Affairs, University of Toronto, 1 Devonshire Place, Toronto, ON).

The symposium will be the premier event for anyone who loves Shakespeare and realizes the enormity of his contribution to the cultural life of this planet. The University of Guelph has played a key role in the analysis of the Sanders Portrait of Shakespeare and is now prepared to share an insider’s view of how this research plays a significant role in the world’s understanding of the impact of the Bard.

The symposium will:

  • make the results of the most recent research on the Portrait public, in an open forum where informed debate can occur with some of the world’s leading experts on the portrait
  • rectify the deplorable lack of attention that has been paid to a singular image of Shakespeare that has substantial amounts of evidence associated with it – evidence that no other so-called “contender” portrait has
  • demonstrate the University of Guelph’s longstanding commitment to bridging the gap between academic research and public interest, in an attempt to move the portrait from private ownership into the public domain.

Following the unveiling of the portrait and a presentation of the scientific documentation proving that the portrait dates back to the early 1600s, three panels of experts will address the curatorial and media response to the findings, the provenance and contextual arguments for its authenticity, and the market value of this unique treasure.

Owned by a Canadian, it is in the best public interest to move this portrait from private ownership into the public domain where ongoing research and debate can continue and where Canadians can access this wonderful image in a properly curated setting.

Refreshments and lunch will be provided, co-sponsored by Oxford University Press (Canada). The event will also mark the launch of the new Oxford University Press series Shakespeare Made in Canada, whose General Editor is Daniel Fischlin, a University Research Chair in the School of English and Theatre Studies at the University of Guelph. The series features the Sanders Portrait prominently as part of its cover design.

For more background on the conference see the recent Globe & Mail article by James Adams: Reputed Shakespeare portrait prepares to strut upon the world stage.

See also, “Experts to Debate, Discuss Canadian Portrait of Shakespeare.”

For more information on Shakespeare’s presence in London click here to view three films made by the London Metropolitan Archives for their 2013 exhibit  “Shakespeare and London.”

Due to  limited space and exceptional demand to attend the “Look here upon this picture”: A Symposium on the Sanders Portrait of Shakespeare is by invitation only. To inquire about the availability of seating please contact: Click on the link below to access a .pdf of the full conference program.

Shakespeare Program PDF: Look Here Upon This Picture: A Symposium on the Sanders Portrait of Shakespeare 

Conference Schedule:

Date: Thursday, November 28, 2013
Location: The Campbell Conference Facility, Munk School of Global Affairs

Morning Sessions:

9:30 – Unveiling the Portrait / Facing the Truth
Opening Remarks by Dr. Alastair Summerlee (President and Vice-Chancellor, University of Guelph)
Introduction by Dr. Daniel Fischlin (University Research Chair, School of English and Theatre Studies)

9:45-10:05 – The Scientific Evidence: Reading the Wood, Paint, Paper, Glue
Dr. Marie-Claude Corbeil (Senior Conservation Scientist, Canadian Conservation Institute)

10:05-10:30 – The Internal Evidence: Fashioning Shakespeare
Jenny Tiramani (former Costume and Stage Designer Shakespeare’s Globe, The School of Historical Dress)

10:30-10:45 Q&A

10:45-11:00 – Refreshments

11:00-11:45 – Reception History and Media: The Portrait as Story Machine
Moderator: John Kissick (Independent Artist and Director of the School of Fine Art and Music)
Robert Enright (University Research Chair, School of Fine Art and Music); James Adams (Globe & Mail);
Anne Henderson (Director/Writer Arcady Films/InformAction Films)

11:45-12:00 Q&A

12:00-1:00 – Oxford University Press Luncheon hosted by Jen Rubio (Oxford University Press Acquisitions Editor)

Afternoon Sessions:

Moderator: Dr. Irena Makaryk (University of Ottawa)

1:00-1:45 – Provenance and Context: Tracing Histories of Interconnection
Dr. Daniel Fischlin and Dr. Andrew Bretz (University of Guelph)

1:45-2:30The Sanders Portrait as Painting: An Art Historical Perspective
Lloyd DeWitt (Curator of European Art, Art Gallery of Ontario [AGO])

2:30-3:00 – Refreshments

3:00-4:10 – What’s the Value of Priceless? Hard Dollars vs. Legacy Issues
Moderator: Dr. Lilly Koltun (Former Director General, Portrait Gallery of Canada)
Kathryn Minard (International Society of Appraisers); David Loch (founder and owner of Loch Galleries); Dr. Jane Freeman (University of Toronto)

4:10-4:30 Q&A

4:30 – Closing Remarks: What’s Next?
Dr. Alastair Summerlee

5:00 – Reception

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