Call for Papers | Botany and the Visual Arts at UAAC-AAUC

Posted in Calls for Papers by Editor on May 15, 2012

From the conference website (which includes information on additional sessions). . .

Cross-pollinations: Botany and the Visual Arts, 1700 to the Present
Concordia University, Montreal, 1-3 November 2012

Proposals due 4 June 2012

Panel at the Universities Art Association of Canada (UAAC-AAUC) Annual Conference

This session explores intersections between botany and the visual arts since 1700. Plants have held iconographic significance since the Middle Ages, serving as traditional Christian allegories or as more abstract symbols in the Romantic period. Have the botanical sciences, such as phytognomy or Linnaean taxonomy, contributed to the symbolic charge of particular plants? Vegetation has similarly played an ongoing role in the decorative arts, inspiring motifs as diverse as arabesques to the wallpaper patterns of the Arts and Crafts Movement. How has vegetal ornament engaged with the expanding repertoire of botanical illustrations supplied by imperial expeditions? The eighteenth century also witnessed a major shift from a mechanistic to an organic paradigm of the creative mind. Did the study of plant growth and procreation provoke theories of vegetable genius? This session invites proposals across mediums and cultures that consider how botany has influenced the subjects of art, artistic practice, and concepts of artistic generation. Papers that investigate how the arts have shaped knowledge of the vegetable kingdom are also welcome.

Please email abstracts (250 words) and a short bio to Nina Amstutz, the session chair, at nina.amstutz@utoronto.ca. Membership to the UAAC-AAUC required for conference participation.

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