Project Description: Narrative Elements

Narrative Elements in British Marine Painting of the Long 18th Century

The workshop’s lectures and discussions focus on the function of various recurring pictorial elements within the narrative structure of maritime artworks, charts and maps in England in the long 18th century. Furthermore, the resulting implications for the construction of the narrative of Great Britain as a maritime superpower within the context of an 18th and 19th century maritime visual culture will be analysed. In addition to pictorial elements already much considered, such as the ships and seafarers, the workshop also explicitly analyses and discusses the representation of the material elements of water/sea and air/wind and how they can be made serviceable for the visual narrative structure of the artwork. Thus, the concept of elements in the title and context of the workshop has a double meaning: on the one hand, they are used to describe the various pictorial elements from which the maritime artworks are constructed; on the other hand, they indicate the concrete elements of wind and water to which special attention is paid. The same applies to the attribute „narrative“, which on the one hand describes the narrative structure immanent in the picture, but at the same time also points to the overarching construction of a national narrative through these very works of art.


Funded by TriGUT of the Graduiertenwerk der Universität Trier (Graduate Center, Trier University)

Jannik Eikmeier

Laura Münker (Hiwi, student assistant)