I think that I’m an art historian who specialises in medieval parish church architecture, particularly the explosion of creativity and artistic production that happened in early-fourteenth-century England. I’m generally fascinated by ecclesiastical architecture, basically because you don’t usually have to pay to see it. I’m also deeply engaged, in a sort of T. S. Eliot way, by Anglo-Catholic ritual and history, so am not afraid to get my right knee dirty on occasion. I’ve made a huge database (some 1,300 entries) on medieval sedilia in England for my PhD thesis, and am looking to start a similar research project on the English parish church chancel, if any institution believes me that there’s more to English parish churches than post-communion coffee and biscuits.
I’m a pretty rubbish medievalist, because I think Victorian stained glass is often of aesthetic merit, and there was one occasion that I said something complimentary about a Baroque church. I think it’s very important for academia and the humanities to engage with a larger public, and try and bring some sense of the intellectual process of irreverent discussion and debate that goes into the production of our footnoted and peer-review journal articles. This blog was started when I was undertaking my PhD on sedilia – the stone seats for the priest, deacon and subdeacon often found in English medieval churches. It has been a way to try out various ideas to relate my research and interests to a wide audience: some of which, especially the wonky arches of Great Mistakes in English Medieval Architecture, have been surprisingly successful.
In addition, I also currently keep the rather bluntly-titled Medieval Art Research going with call for papers and other such opportunities in academic art history, which you can also follow on Facebook and Twitter, or email us if you’d like us to post anything.