HomeFrom quarries to rock-cut sites. Echoes of stone crafting

HomeFrom quarries to rock-cut sites. Echoes of stone crafting

From quarries to rock-cut sites. Echoes of stone crafting

Du front de carrière à la structure rupestre. Reflet du travail de la pierre

Dal fronte di cava alla struttura rupestre. Tracce incise della lavorazione della pietra

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Published on Monday, October 05, 2020 by Céline Guilleux

Summary

The conference aims at carrying on the international debate on the archaeological investigation of rock-cut spaces and stone quarries, considered as aspects of the same mining phenomenon: places in which specific empirical and handcrafted knowledge related to stone working is expressed and conveyed. The conference envisages a diachronic approach and therefore all case studies are welcome, without chronological limits.

Announcement

Argument

The archaeological study of quarries focuses mainly on the reconstruction of the extraction process, while rock-hewn spaces have often been approached from the point of view architectural styles or art-history. Nevertheless, a holistic structural approach to the study these spaces could allow a better understanding of the agency of those who carved the stone. Stone quarries and rock-cut sites have rarely been included in global studies of historical landscapes and few are the forums dedicated to the theoretical and methodological debate over the importance that these sites have for the understanding of past societies: the conference cycle organized by Marie-Elise Gardel at Saint-Martin-le-Vieil over the past 15 years; the research seminars " de la carrière à la construction " coordinated by the Laboratoire de Médiévistique occidentale de Paris (LAMOP - Université Paris-Panthéon Sorbonne); the recent sessions at the conference of the European Association of Archaeologists (2017-2019) and at the symposium of the Society of Italian Medieval Archaeologists (SAMI) which took place in Matera in 2018.

The study of these structures raises many methodological problems for researchers: the subterranean nature of some sites prevents the presence of natural light; the narrowness of the passages makes surveying difficult and the presence of waste piles and big blocks make the observation of quarry fronts extremely difficult. These sites have often been perceived as the result of synchronic processes. Because of that, site layouts have long been the only objects of study, neglecting the analysis of the carving phases and the determination of the relative chronologies. Furthermore, few researchers seem interested in the study of excavation and extraction processes, essential for defining the economy of the sites, identifying and qualifying the human agents who contributed to the creation of this evidences and understanding the organization and function of the space within the sites themselves.

The conference aims at carrying on the international debate on the archaeological investigation of ROCK-CUT SPACES and STONE QUARRIES, considered as aspects of the same mining phenomenon: places in which specific empirical and handcrafted knowledge related to stone working is expressed and conveyed. The conference envisages a diachronic approach and therefore all case studies are welcome, without chronological limits. The meeting will be organized considering two different research perspectives and observation scales:

- the analysis of the individual rock walls, considering the study of tool traces as a proxy for understanding the carving phases;

- the analysis of the structure (site / quarry) as a whole, by contextualizing the results of the study of the single walls.

The conference will be held in English and will take place over two days at the University of Pisa on 25 and 26 March 2021. The meeting will promote a participated reflection on the methods for documenting spaces that are carved in stone. A moment of exchange at the end of the first day will be devoted to questions of vocabulary, often revealing of different theoretical approaches and traditions of study. 

The participation of PhD students and young researchers is encouraged.

Scientific Committee

  • Marie-Laure Derat, Directrice de recherche au laboratoire Orient et Méditerranée (CNRS) ;
  • Marie-Elise Gardel (Archéologue indépendante) ;
  • Maria Grazia Melis, Professeure de l’ Università degli Studi di Sassari ;
  • Gabriele Gattiglia, Maître de conférence à l’Università di Pisa ;
  • Letizia Gualandi, Professeure de l’Università di Pisa
  • Anaïs Lamesa, post-doctorante en archéologie au laboratoire Orient et Méditerranée (CNRS) ;
  • Claudia Sciuto, post-doctorante en archéologie à l’ Università di Pisa ;
  • Marie-Elise Porqueddu, post-doctorante en archéologie à l’Universidad Autónoma de Madrid

Places

  • Università di Pisa
    Pisa, Italian Republic

Date(s)

  • Friday, January 15, 2021

Attached files

Keywords

  • carrière, rupestre, paroi, archéologie, site, diachronique, monde

Contact(s)

  • Anaïs Lamesa
    courriel : anais [dot] lamesa [at] cnrs [dot] fr

Information source

  • Anaïs Lamesa
    courriel : anais [dot] lamesa [at] cnrs [dot] fr

To cite this announcement

« From quarries to rock-cut sites. Echoes of stone crafting », Call for papers, Calenda, Published on Monday, October 05, 2020, https://calenda.org/804773

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