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Kamini Vellodi on ‘A timely collection?’

9 January 2019

A timely collection?

Review of:

Time in the History of Art. Temporality, chronology and anachrony, edited by Dan Karlholm and Keith Moxey, Studies in Art Historiography, New York and London: Routledge 2018, 254 pages, 50 B/W Illus, ISBN 978-0-415-34744-0, £115.00.

Kamini Vellodi (Edinburgh College of Art, University of Edinburgh) 20/KV1

Abstract: The question of time has been at the forefront of art historical investigation for several years. The value of Time in the history of Art is in bringing together a conceptually, methodologically and thematically diverse range of viewpoints to present the range of problematics at stake in the questioning. The collection is, however, symptomatic of the challenges and pitfalls of art historical attention to time. First, sustained and analytical attention to philosophies of time are obscured in favour of descriptions of the temporal complexity of artefacts/images/artworks. Thus, despite claims to the contrary, the underlying conceptual frameworks and models of time (including the much-maligned model of chronology) persist. Second, the questioning of time is detached from the questioning of other fundamental presuppositions of art historical study – such as knowledge, representation and fact – and as such only partially enacts the critique of art historical thinking that it claims to stage.

Keywords: time, chronology, critique, anachronism, heterochrony


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