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Collecting Histories

ISSN No: 2058-2781
Series Editor(s):
Andrea M. Gáldy

Series Description

The history of collections is an increasingly important branch of cultural studies that spans the disciplines of art history, political history, architectural history, archaeology, history of science, museums studies and the social sciences. It is taught at a growing number of universities in the UK, in Europe and in North America up to PhD level, even though this is still a fairly new branch of (mainly) art historical investigation.
The international research group Collecting & Display was founded in London in 2004 and has been in operation since 2005, organising regular seminars and international conferences. The success of the events and publications – four volumes of conference proceedings to date – is proof of the necessity of a dedicated series focused on cutting-edge research in the field of collecting history.
Therefore, the new series wishes to take the debate beyond the original forum and includes volumes that result from Collecting & Display events as well as publications that highlight the research and discussions conducted within other groups and institutions. All publications will be peer reviewed by specialists.

Editor(s) Biography

Andrea M. Gáldy gained her PhD from the University of Manchester (School of Archaeology and Art History) in 2002. A recipient of fellowships from the Henry Moore Foundation (2003-05) and from the Harvard University Center for Italian Renaissance Studies at Villa I Tatti (2005-06), she is one of the original founding members of Collecting & Display. Having taught at North American and British university programmes in Florence, she moved to Germany in early 2012 and is currently engaged in completing a post-doctoral project. A sixth volume of Collecting Histories – Collecting Prints and Drawings – is in preparation, while three additional international conferences are already scheduled for the period 2016 to 2018. For more information on the international forum Collecting & Display, please visit

Series Titles

Collecting and Dynastic Ambition

Dynastic Ambition, the desire to advance one’s family fortune and reputation, is the reason for all kinds of sometimes bewildering behaviour and activities. Within the study of the history of collecting, many and various motives have been given that underlie the patronage and collecting of art, from personal to public, private to p...

Collecting and Museology

To celebrate the first ten years of the international forum Collecting and Display, as well as the launch of a dedicated series of publications “Collecting Histories”, in 2014, a conference dedicated to new directions in terms of collecting, display, visitor experience and the use of modern media in today’s museums was held at muse...

Collecting and the Princely Apartment

Collecting is an obsession that goes back to the mists of history. While spare time and spare cash seem an absolute necessity for this kind of activity, every collector has his or her own approach to the formation of a collection. The way in which one’s treasures are displayed is another important instance in which one collector di...

Collecting East and West

If collecting the rare and valuable is an entirely normal trait of human behaviour, amassing objects from far-away places has also long played a role in the history of collecting. “East” and “West”, or “North” and “South”, for that matter, are of course entirely relative to one’s particular geographical position. Therefore, it is i...

Collecting Nature

Nature can be collected in many forms and shapes: live animals have been locked up in cages, displayed in zoos and menageries and their hides and dried body parts have been used as part of installations in galleries and studies. Plants from far-away countries have been cultivated in botanical gardens and in hothouses. Furthermore, ...

Collecting Prints and Drawings

Cabinets of prints and drawings are found in the earliest art collections of Early Modern Europe. From the sixteenth century onwards, some of them acquired such fame that the necessity for an ordered and scientific display meant that a dedicated keeper was occasionally employed to ensure that fellow enthusiasts, as well as visiting...

Women Patrons and Collectors

In looking at the history of collecting, one may be excused for regarding it as an activity in which, traditionally, women have shown little interest or in which they have not been involved.As the present volume shows, women—particularly aristocratic women—not only resisted this discrimination through the ages, but also built impor...