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Van Bruaene, Anne-Laure

Van Bruaene, Anne-Laure


Anne-Laure van Bruane, born in Ghent, Belgium, 1975. Professor of History at Ghent University.

Theme Group Fellow (April – June 2016)

Urban Culture in the Renaissance and Reformation Low Countries, 1485-1585

Research Question

The Low Countries forged a unique urban culture in the late Middle Ages, with well-defined public rituals and a strong civic religion. This project explores how this urban culture was transformed in the sixteenth century by new intellectual movements – Humanism, the Reformation – and as a consequence of political events, in particular the Dutch Revolt.

Project Description

In the late Middle Ages a distinctive Netherlandish urban culture developed, at a time when the Low Countries were one of the most urbanized regions of Europe. This project looks beyond the medieval period by examining the changes in the turbulent sixteenth century, when political events (in particular the Dutch Revolt) were fuelled by the new intellectual movements of Humanism and the Reformation. I will examine the case of Lucas d’Heere (1534-1584), a highly mobile painter, poet and festival designer from Ghent who converted to Calvinism and consciously introduced new Humanist forms in his painting and poetry. I will consider d’Heere as an artist at the crossroads of (trans)national and urban politics, of courtly and civic culture and of medieval and early modern knowledge systems.

Selected Publications

1) Van Bruaene, Anne-Laure. 2008. Om Beters Wille. Rederijkerskamers en de stedelijke cultuur in de Zuidelijke Nederlanden (1400-1650). Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press.

2) Kavaler, Ethan Matt, and Anne-Laure Van Bruaene, eds. Forthcoming. Urban Perspectives on sixteenth-century Netherlandish Art & Culture. Turnhout: Brepols.

3) Buylaert, Frederik, Jelle De Rock, and Anne-Laure Van Bruaene. Forthcoming. “City Portrait, Civic Body & Commercial Printing in sixteenth-century Ghent.” Renaissance Quarterly..

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