The Getty is Recapping Game of Thrones With Medieval Manuscripts

The J. Paul Getty Museum
The J. Paul Getty Museum / The J. Paul Getty Museum

Now that Game of Thrones is back, Monday mornings demand poring over recaps and endlessly analyzing the many trials and tribulations in the world of Westeros.

For those who might be looking for something a bit more scholarly, consider day-after rundowns from the folks at the J. Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles. For the last few seasons, the arts organization has been recapping the show on the museum’s Tumblr in an unexpected way: through medieval art. Curators take illuminated manuscripts, paintings, and other works from the Getty collection to tell the story of that week’s episode. (Spoiler alert: Here’s the recap of the first episode of the sixth season.)

This season, Bryan C. Keene and Alexandra Kaczenski will also examine storytelling parallels between art from the Middle Ages and the aesthetic elements of Hollywood today—from screenwriting, costume design, lighting, art direction, and more. Using the exhibition "Traversing the Globe through Illuminated Manuscripts" and the Renaissance manuscript Book of the Deeds of Jacques de Lalaing as resources, they’ll also consider “Medieval globalisms” and “knightly adventure,” for a fun and totally different take on TV scrutiny.

The entertaining “parchment–pixel parallels” make for a fun and illuminating look at how history influences modern culture. To see more GoT analysis through the lens of medieval art, check out the Getty’s blog, and if you spot something you want for your very own, all images are free to download through the museum’s Open Content program.