chapter  8
21 Pages

A Foreign Affair

Thomas Gemini and His Booklet of Moresque Designs
WithFemke Speelberg

Thomas Gemini does not indulge in the apparent artistic inclination in the 1548 series of moresque designs, however, as the majority of the plates with designs for moresques do not reflect his own designs. The Morysse and Damashin is often considered an outlier in Gemini’s oeuvre. By ascertaining the specific purpose of the series within his career, this chapter attempts to make an argument for the vital role prints and printmaking played in his attempt to settle and build a career in a country that was not his own. In bringing together elements of his biography, which have previously been studied separately in the fields of anatomy, cartography, cosmography and print history, it becomes clear that while printmaking was a sideline to his other professional activities, the material that he chose to publish was not selected at random. Instead, Gemini chose to (re-)produce works that tied in with his own biography and expertise.