Arts, Humanities, and Complex Networks

This is the title of the 2nd Leonardo Satellite Symposium that will take place at the Ludwig Museum in Budapest on June 7, 2011. And there we will be (the CulturePlex Lab), with a paper on the network of Baroque Hispanic-American paintings. The program is out there and can be checked, along with many beautiful images, at here. For a quick view of our summary, just keep reading:
Sustaining a Global Community: Art and Religion in the Network of Baroque Hispanic-American Paintings (Juan Luis Suárez, Fernando Sancho & Javier de la Rosa)
In this paper we analyze the network of Hispanic baroque paintings from 1550 to 1850. We divide the data set of 11,443 works from Spain and Latin America in 25 year periods in order to study the evolution of the paintings’ 211 descriptors. We show that most of the paintings are linked through genre and theme and that religious Christian themes make up the overwhelming majority of connections among paintings.
The inter-dependence of art and religion in this network begs the question of the evolutionary role of art and symbolic networks in the sustainability of global communities. It also helps to understand how cultural networks —networks in which interpersonal relations are mediated by the interactions with cultural objects and phenomena— serve the purpose of harnessing the humans’ evolved social psychology in order to interact with other humans and groups at great distances.
Henrich et al. (2010) have proven that the existence of norms that sustain fairness in exchanges among strangers are connected with the diffusion of institutions such as market integration and the participation in world religions. Their research confirms the hypothesis that modern world religion may have contributed to the sustainability of large-scale societies and large-scale interactions. We propose that art is another institution that contributes to
the arising and sustainability of large-scale societies. We use the case of the formation of an artistic network of paintings, schools, themes, genres, and artists whose development goes along with the expansion and colonization of the Hispanic Monarchy across America to show that this artistic network has a presence in all political territories encompassing most ethnicities and religions of indigenous origin.

This entry was posted in cultural digital, el humanista digital and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>