Visiting an 11th-century church inspires student’s research.

Even though Lauren Eich just graduated from UA with a BA in art history, Lauren Eich standing outside St. Etienne church in Caen, France.she is still hard at work researching the medieval architecture she loves.

Last fall Lauren Eich (BA ARH 2014) took Dr. Tanja Jones’ Late Medieval Art History course and took on the research topic of the Abbey Church of St. Etienne in Caen, France. Eich had a difficult time finding English language studies of the church and good photos of its interior. She ended up translating French studies of St. Etienne and other Caen churches into English. This summer on a trip to France, she visited Caen and St. Etienne. She took photographs of the ambulatory, the chapels, and the details of the choir — photos that also will help if she continues research on St. Etienne in graduate school.

The Church of St. Etienne in Caen, FranceEich writes, “It’s such a beautiful church and it has so much history that I have been really surprised about the lack of literature on it. It was built by William the Conqueror in the 11th century. The church survived the Normandy bombings in World War II, because the people of Caen painted a red cross on a white sheet and hung it on the roof to mark it as a hospital. When I visited it was incredible to see the photographs from WWII of people living in the church to avoid the bombs.” Eich will receive her second BA in studio art in January and plans to apply to graduate school in art history.[F14]

Eich taking pictures of the choir at St. Etienne.