Sabancı Üniversitesi


Paper & Things: Material Mobility Between East and West

Published on 14.09.2021 08:32

Paper & Things: Material Mobility between East and West

15-17 September 2021

Sabancı University

Sakıp Sabancı Museum


The history of paper is one of material, technological, and functional mobility. Originating in China, it moved westward across Central Asia, driven by war and trade along the various “Silk Roads”, toward the Mediterranean. Paper technology, production, and use then spread from the Arab world to Tunisia, Spain, and Sicily.  Once introduced in Europe, it contributed to the so-called paper revolution of the late Middle Ages, a far-reaching yet understudied development in communication that predated the invention of print. Paper producing centers were strategically located within diverse mercantile, financial, and administrative communication networks.

The material history and uses of paper as a medium went hand in hand with other communicative techniques, such as the development of calligraphic designs, illustrations and illuminations, all of which had to be adapted to its nature and format. The variety of paper sizes and colours that emerged, the production and use of specific inks, of mineral, organic and herbal pigments, and of gold and silver were all of immense cultural, social, and political significance.

Our two-day seminar at Sabancı University’s Sakıp Sabancı Museum intends to explore this materiality and mobility of paper and its connectivity across political, linguistic, and cultural boundaries. It will also be looking into the nature and functions of museums, libraries and archives in investigating the conditions of paper’s production, distribution, transportation, storage, and uses.

SU History Program and Tülay Artan (PIMo) cordially invites you to attend the Istanbul workshop of PIMo (People in Motion: Entangled Histories of Displacement Across the Mediterranean, 1492-1923/COST Action 18140),  Paper and Things: Material Mobility between East and West, September 15-17,Sakıp Sabancı Museum, Sabancı University, Istanbul.


15 September, Wednesday afternoon: Workshop + Keynote address: Zeren Tanındı

Meeting ID: 639 184 4238, Password: 15092021


16 September, Thursday morning: Workshop

Meeting ID: 639 184 4238, Password: 16092021


Please click for the program.