Medieval manuscripts highlight of Lilly workshops at Indiana University

British scribe and illuminator Patricia Lovett will be this year’s guest for Indiana University’s Mediaevalia at the Lilly, an annual event focused on the Lilly Library’s large collection of rare medieval manuscripts and books.

The event is directed by Professor Hildegard Keller with Indiana University’s Germanic Department and Medieval Studies Institute and Cherry Williams, the Lilly’s curator of manuscripts.

As part of the event, Lovett will teach two workshops demonstrating calligraphy, illumination and manuscript-making. The workshops will be held on Thursday, Nov. 3, from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 2:30 to 5 p.m. in the Slocum Room of the Lilly Library. Both workshops are free and open to the public, but registration is requested by calling the library at 812-855-2452.

The first workshop, titled “Looking at Manuscripts,” will give a scribe and illuminator’s view of a selection of the library’s medieval manuscripts, while the second, titled “How Manuscripts Were Made,” will include a demonstration and explanation of quills, vellum, parchment, miniature painting and pigments.

On Friday, Nov. 4, Lovett will present a lecture discussing the craft of manuscript production titled “Gold on Parchment” from 5 to 6 p.m. in the Slocum Room. A reception will follow.

“Patricia is the only practitioner of calligraphy and illumination I know, and she has been such a long time in her business that Steve Jobs might well have taken with her those famous calligraphy classes that forged the path to relational fonts, as he pointed out,” Keller said. “Working with her will be especially enthralling since she is so knowledgeable about manuscript-making in theory and in practice.”

In conjunction with the event, students from Keller’s undergraduate and graduate courses will display their own work in the library’s Ball Room. The exhibit will be open during the workshops.

Lovett is the author or co-author of several books, including Calligraphy & Illumination: A Historical and Practical Guide; The Macclesfield Alphabet Book: BL Additional ms 88887: A Facsimile; and The Historical Sourcebook for Scribes. She is a Fellow and Chair of the Calligraphy and Lettering Arts Society.

Lovett’s visit is supported by the Medieval Studies Institute, the Lilly Library and the Department of Germanic Studies.

Source: Indiana University

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