Dr Péter Bokody

Dr Péter Bokody

Associate Professor of Art History

School of Society and Culture (Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Business)



Associate Head of School for Historical and Political Studies
Dr Péter Bokody joined the Art History team at the University of Plymouth in 2014. Péter is a specialist of the Italian Renaissance, his interests include gender studies, metapainting, contemporary visual theory and political iconography as well. He held research fellowships at BildEvidenz (Freie Universität, Berlin, 2018), Niki - Istituto Universitario Olandese (Florence, 2016), Kunsthistorisches Institut (Max Planck Institut, Florence, 2009) and the Index of Christian Art (Princeton University, Princeton (2009). Before coming to Plymouth, Péter taught art history at the Moholy-Nagy University of Art and Design (Budapest, 2013) and McDaniel College (Budapest, 2007-13). 


PhD (2010) - Medieval Studies, Central European University, Budapest
MA (2006) - Medieval Studies, Central European University, Budapest
BA (2004) - Art History and Art Theory, Eötvös Loránd University, Budapest

Professional membership

Fellow, Higher Education Academy (HEA)International Center of Medieval Art (ICMA)
Association of Art Historians (AAH)
Art and Christianity Enquiry (ACE)
The Medieval Academy of America (MAA)
Hungarian Academy of Sciences (MTA)
External Examiner, History of Art BA, Oxford Brookes University, Oxford (2022-)
External Examiner, History of Art MA, Medieval Section, The Courtauld Institute of Art, London (2021-)
External Examiner, History of Art MA, The Open University, Milton Keynes (2023-)


Teaching interests

Péter teaching interests are shaped by his strong belief in empowering students from Day One of their university studies. For him, this means building gradually a competitive skill-set, which allows freshers to thrive in an academic environment and beyond. He is responsible for the introduction to art history and visual culture modules, offered to art history and anthropology students. His upper-level teaching revolves around patronage in renaissance painting and issues in contemporary art. He has a long-lasting interest in paintings that trick or surprise their viewers: his classes center on sharing and dissecting such visual experiences.
Péter leads the module on art historical methodologies for research master students and supervises ResM and PhD projects on renaissance art, metapainting, political iconography, gender studies and contemporary visual culture. He welcomes postgraduate students in these research areas.
ARHI414 Introduction to Art History and Visual Culture
ANTH407 Introduction to Visual Anthropology and Art History
ARHI506 International Field Trip (Florence)
ARHI501/601 Self-Reflexivity in Western Art and Visual Culture
ARHI515/619 Power, Patronage and Ideology: Aspects of Renaissance Art
ARHI508/620 Questions in Contemporary Art History
ARHI516/621 Imagery in Online and Offline Worlds
ARHI605 Dissertation I - Theories and methods
ARHI608 Dissertation II
MARE703 Research Methods in Art History
ResM and PhD supervision 


Research interests

Péter's research focus is the emergence of painting as a complex and political medium in Italy around 1300 and the aftermath of this transformation in the Renaissance. He curated the exhibition Image and Christianityin 2014 at the Benedictine Archabbey of Pannonhalma (Hungary). He has published several articles on early Italian metapainting, and he is the author of Images-within-Images in Italian Painting (1250–1350): Reality and Reflexivity(Burlington, VT: Ashgate, 2015). Péter co-edited with Alexander Nagel the collected volume Renaissance Metapainting(Turnhout: Harvey Miller, 2020), which examines self-reflexive pictorial tendencies in Northern and Southern Europe before the Reformation. His current project looks at the political iconography of tyranny, war and sexual violence in the Italian peninsula.

Other research

Selected Conference Papers and Public Lectures
Political Control and Sexual Violence in Italian Painting Before 1500
The Emergence of Gendered Power Structures since Early Modern Times: Practices, Norms, Media. Herder-Institute, Philipps-Universität Marburg, 2022.
Sexual Violence at the Dawn of the Italian Renaissance
Keynote, Inaugural Art History and Visual Culture PGR Conference. University of Exeter, 2022.
Deep Surfaces in Renaissance Painting
Between Figure and Ground: Seeing in Premodernity. Eikones, University of Basel, 2022.
Women as Emotive Models in Giovanni Sercambi’s Chronicle
Renaissance Society of America. Dublin, 2022.

The Materiality of Paint
Materialität und Medialität. University of Tübingen, 2022.
Memories, Laws, and Images of Sexual Violence in Late-Medieval Italy
Andrew Ladis Memorial Trecento Conference. Frist Art Museum, Nashville, 2022.

Experiments with Space in Early Italian Painting
Giotto’s Circle Seminar. The Courtauld Institute of Art, London, 2021.

 Unframing Embedded Images
Framing/Unframing Spaces in the English-Speaking World. University of Strasbourg, 2021

The Picture-Bearers by Andrea Mantegna
 Eikones Research Seminar. University of Basel, 2021
Narrative and Architecture in the Lower Church at Assisi
RSA Virtual. The Renaissance Society of America, 2021
Embedded Images in Perspective
Pictorial Space in the Late Middle Ages and Early Renaissance. University of Amsterdam, 2019

Plasticity, Inertia and Iconography: Depicting Marble Statues in Italian Painting, c. 1400
International Medieval Congress. Institute for Medieval Studies, Leeds, 2019

Poetics of Sexual Violence and Pregnancy in Renaissance Painting
Art History Research Seminar. University of Plymouth, 2018


Tradition and Innovation: Images-within-Images in Italian Painting After the Age of Giotto
BildEvidenz. Freie Universität, Berlin, 2018

Representation of Wartime Sexual Violence in Renaissance Painting
Peninsula Arts. University of Plymouth, 2017

The Politicization of Rape: Giotto’s Allegory of Injustice in Padua
Murray Seminar. Birkbeck’s School of Arts, London, 2017.

Codification and Visualization of Wartime Sexual Violence
Before Judgment: Critiquing Imagery and Style of Good and Evil. Kunsthistorisches Institut, Florence, 2017.
Politics of Humility? The Fresco of Pope Celestine V by Niccolò di Tommaso from Casaluce
International Medieval Congress. Institute for Medieval Studies, Leeds, 2017
May my prayer be set before you like incense - Mediality and Prayer in 13th century Italy
The Experience of Prayer in the Middle Ages. Trinity College, Dublin, 2017

The Long Shadow of Taddeo Gaddi
Giotto’s Circle Away-Day. Cambridge, 2016.
Before Self-Affirmation: Self-Aware Painting in Early Renaissance Art
34th CIHA Congress. Comité International de l’Histoire de l’Art, Beijing, 2016.
Images of Rape in Italian Painting
Dutch University Institute for Art History. Florence, 2016.
Sexual Violence Against Women in Fourteenth-Century Italian Painting
Center for Renaissance and Early Modern Studies. Queen Mary University, London, 2016.

Visual Self-Reflexivity at the Dawn of the Renaissance
Art History Research Seminar. Trinity College, Dublin, 2014.

The Structure of Iconographic Innovations: the Case of Giotto
Iconology at the Crossroads. Iconographic Studies, Rijeka, 2013.
Patterns of Reflexivity? Images-within-Images in Italian Painting (1278-1348)
Medieval Art in Theory Conference. The Courtauld Institute of Art, London, 2010.
The Cathedral of Siena and the Presentation in the Temple by Ambrogio Lorenzetti
Architectura Picta. La representation de l’architecture dans la peinture. École Pratique des Hautes Études (Paris) and Kunsthistorisches Institut (Florence), Paris, 2009.
Kronotopos. Narrative strategies in the Homilies on the Life of the Virgin
Bridges and Boundaries: Revisiting the Byzantine Inheritance. Center for Hellenic Traditions, Central European University, Budapest, 2009.
Presence and Performativity
44th International Congress on Medieval Studies. Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, MI, 2009.
Between Art and Iconography: Representation-within-representation in Assisi
Medieval Mise-en-abyme: the Object Depicted Within Itself. The Courtauld Institute of Art, London, 2009.
How to Petrify: Pseudo-Sculptural Animal Decoration in the Lower Church of Assisi
International Medieval Congress: The Natural World. Institute for Medieval Studies, Leeds, 2008.
Between Ubertino and Olivi: The Allegory of Obedience in Assisi
Letteratura profetica, oracolare e sibillina fra XIII e XV secolo. Palazzo dei Musei, Modena, 2008.
A History of Image-within-Picture in the Art of Medieval Italy (1290-1350)
Bildanalyse – interdisziplinär: Bildverständnis in den Wissenschaften. Deutsch-Italienisches Zentrum Villa Vigoni, 2008.

Grants & contracts

ICMA-Kress Book Award (2013)
International Center of Medieval Art, Cloisters
3rd Best Dissertation Award (2011)
Central European University, Budapest



“Framing the Golgotha in Renaissance Painting.” Sillages Critiques 35 (2023): 1-19. 

“Images of Wartime Sexual Violence in the Chronicles of Giovanni Villani and Giovanni Sercambi.” Renaissance Studies 36 (2022): 565-589.

“Florentine Women and Vendetta: the Origin of Guelf-Ghibelline Conflict in Giovanni Villani's Nuova Cronica.” Source: Notes in the History of Art 37 (2017): 5-14.

“After Paradigm: Iconography and Giotto.” IKON: Journal of Iconographic Studies 7 (2014): 131-141.

“Secularization and Realistic Turn in Italy: Antonio Fissiraga’s Funerary Monument in Lodi.” IKON: Journal of Iconographic Studies 5 (2012): 351-362.

“Dániel – megjegyzés a klosterneuburgi oltár Feltámadás reggele-táblájának ikonográfiájához” (Daniel –Note on the Iconography of the Morning of the Resurrection Panel of the Klosterneuburg Altarpiece). Művészettörténeti értesítő 52 (2003): 233-236.

"Tradition and Innovation. Images-within-Images in Italian Painting after the Age of Giotto." In Renaissance Metapainting, ed. Péter Bokody and Alexander Nagel, 59-87. London: Harvey Miller, 2020.

Péter Bokody and Alexander Nagel. “Metapainting before Modernity." In Renaissance Metapainting, ed. Péter Bokody and Alexander Nagel, 3-10. London: Harvey Miller, 2020.

“Before Self-Affirmation: Self-Aware Painting in Early Renaissance Art.” In Terms - 34th CIHA Congress, ed. Shao Dazhen, Fan Di’an and LaoZhu, 575-583. Beijing: Commercial Press, 2019.

“Framing Peace and Politics: The Allegory of Justice by Giotto in the Arena Chapel.“ In Framings, ed. Slavko Kacunko, Ellen Harlizius-Klück and Hans Körner, 13-27. Berlin: Logos, 2015.

“Mural Painting as a Medium: Technique, Representation and Liturgy.” In Image and Christianity: Visual Media in the Middle Ages, ed. Péter Bokody, 136-151. Pannonhalma: Pannonhalma Abbey, 2014.

“Justice, Love and Rape: Giotto’s Allegories of Justice and Injustice in the Arena Chapel, Padua.” In The Iconology of Law and Order, ed. Anna Kerchy and György Szőnyi, 55-66. Szeged: JATE Press, 2012.

“Idolatry or Power: St.Francis in Front of the Sultan.” In Promoting the Saints: Cults and Their Contexts from Late Antiquity until the Early Modern Period, ed. Ottó Gecser and others, 69-81. Budapest: CEU Press, 2010.

Icons and Relics: Veneration of Images between East and West

Curator, Pannonhalma Abbey (March 21 - Nov 11, 2014)

Image and Christianity: Visual Media in the Middle Ages

Curator, Pannonhalma Abbey (July 10 - Sep 30, 2014)

Conference Papers