Call for Papers | CAA in Washington, D.C., 2016

Posted in Calls for Papers by Editor on March 18, 2015


The Jefferson Memorial in Washington, D.C., from across the Tidal Basin of the Potomac River
(Wikimedia Commons, Rdsmith4, 2005)

◊  ◊  ◊  ◊  ◊

The following selection of panels may be of interest for scholars of the eighteenth century, though readers are encouraged to consult the full Call for Papers. HECAA members are asked to pay special attention to the session on pastels chaired by Iris Moon and Esther Bell and the one on Eros and Enlightenment chaired by Nina Dubin and Hérica Valladares. -CH

◊  ◊  ◊  ◊  ◊

104th Annual Conference of the College Art Association
Washington, D.C., 3–6 February 2016

Proposals due by 8 May 2015

The 2016 Call for Participation for the 104th Annual Conference, taking place February 3–6 in Washington, D.C., describes many of next year’s sessions. CAA and the session chairs invite your participation: please follow the instructions in the booklet to submit a proposal for a paper or presentation. This publication also includes a call for Poster Session proposals.

◊  ◊  ◊  ◊  ◊

Historians of Eighteenth-Century Art and Architecture
Pastel: The Moment of a Medium in the Eighteenth Century
Iris Moon, The Metropolitan Museum of Art; and Esther Bell, Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, imoon.moon@gmail.com and esthersusanbell@gmail.com.

This panel explores pastel as the “medium of the moment” in the long eighteenth century in order to pose questions about the temporality of artistic media and how materially unstable works of art shaped the period’s aesthetic discourse. Described by Denis Diderot as “precious powder that will fly from its support, half of it scattered in the air and half clinging to Saturn’s long feathers,” the volatile matter of pastel provoked a sense of physical movement that transformed the viewing process into a charged moment of encounter. We invite considerations on the making and unmaking of pastel practitioners, the critical language around the medium developed by connoisseurs and collectors, and inquiries that situate pastel’s distinctive properties within debates on color and line, touch and sight, viewer and object.

◊  ◊  ◊  ◊  ◊

American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies
Eros and Enlightenment
Nina Dubin, University of Illinois at Chicago, dubin@uic.edu; and Hérica Valladares, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, herica.valladares@gmail.com

What would it mean to consider the eighteenth century through the lens of its evolving discourse on love? The explosion of a novel-reading public; the Enlightenment’s often nervous inquiry into love’s place among the ‘moral sentiments’ and its status in relation to the equally unstable category of friendship; the expansion of epistolary culture and the attendant vogue for love letter pictures; the libertine conceptualization of love as a ‘commerce’; homoeroticism as a cultural leitmotif; the ubiquitous presence of Cupid, even in such unexpected contexts as financial literature; the fixation on ancient notions of eros, from Ovid’s persistently popular Ars Amatoria to the unearthed remains of erotic frescoes: these and other phenomena suggest that love played a central yet complicated role in period self-imaginings, in ways that iconographic accounts of the era’s visual arts have perhaps not fully registered. This ASECS-sponsored panel seeks papers on all aspects of visual and material culture that expand, challenge, and enliven our understanding of eros in the eighteenth century (due date is 31 May).

◊  ◊  ◊  ◊  ◊

The Modernities of French Art and Its History, 1780 to the Present
Natalie Adamson, University of St Andrews; and Richard Taws, University College London, na14@st-andrews.ac.uk and r.taws@ ucl.ac.uk.

From now-canonical studies that helped lay the methodological foundations of art history as a discipline to the extraordinary popularity of French art and ideas outside of the academy, the history of French art has become an influential tradition that has often been presented as synonymous with modernism itself. This session proposes a critical interrogation of the diverse histories of French art since 1780 to the present day. We welcome papers that look outside of, challenge, or run counter to hegemonic narratives. What critical possibilities (if any) remain for the study of French art’s modernities? We encourage approaches that interrelate the histories of specific images, objects, or narratives with reflection on the writing of those histories, or on broader historiographical tendencies, so that a set of fresh perspectives may emerge on this enduring yet highly mutable relationship between art history and modern France.

◊  ◊  ◊  ◊  ◊

Taking Stock: Future Direction(s) in the Study of Collecting
Christina M. Anderson, University of Oxford, cm.anderson@usa.net.

The study of collecting is at a crossroads. “Collection” has often meant “art collection,” overlooking the broader range of objects and behaviors involved. Fascination with the Wunderkammer has centered attention on European models, even when objects themselves were not European. The rise of museum studies, furthermore, has shifted attention away from the individual practice of collecting to institutional concerns about conservation and deaccession. Recent approaches to collecting, intended to broaden its study, include cross-cultural encounters, the circulation of knowledge, the cultural biographies and social lives of things, the art market, and the collecting practices of particular social groups. This panel explores the current and future states of the field through case studies that utilize innovative and forward- looking methodologies. Presentations may, for example, challenge the dominance of traditional sources such as inventories and biographies; present new interpretations or applications of terms like “connoisseurship”; or explore potential insights offered by the study of synesthesia or semiotics.

◊  ◊  ◊  ◊  ◊

Landscape into History
John Beardsley, Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection; Jennifer Raab, Yale University, beardsleyj@doaks.org and jennifer.raab@yale.edu.

Art history and landscape studies have a common origin and shared scholarly trajectories, yet the extent of their reciprocal influence is by no means certain. This session will look both forward and back, exploring the fluctuating and sometimes problematic historical connections between art history and landscape studies while investigating the potential for more productive interchange between the two disciplines in the future. In what ways could the close attention paid by landscape historians to environment, physical and social experience, spatial analysis, and mapping enhance the methods of art history? How might art-historical emphases on materiality, viewing, cultural context, and artistic process contribute to landscape studies? What models do landscape studies have to offer that could address pressing ecological issues while also engaging with questions of representation and aesthetics? Papers should consider this not just as a theoretical challenge but as one to be worked through by a discussion of specific landscapes.

◊  ◊  ◊  ◊  ◊

Beyond Featherwork: Mexican Visual Identity between Conquest and Independence
Aliza M. Benjamin and Bradley J. Cavallo, Temple University, tua63451@temple.edu and tuc70074@temple.edu.

Colonial Mexican society of ca. 1650–1800 produced a sophisticated aesthetic that blurred distinctions between Old and New World visual identities. Such criollismo transformed indigenous traditions into something independent yet reminiscent of European preferences, a process of incorporation that rarely produced clearly enunciated cases of syncretism. More often, the characteristic signs of the original cultural traces remained present but indistinct, negotiations of the cognitive dissonance experienced by a people acutely aware of their foundation in both Aztec and Spanish pasts. This session examines the multicultural fusion of European and indigenous art-making traditions surviving in the evidence of postconquest, pre-Independence architecture and movable art objects. We invite papers of methodological diversity that illustrate how artists, patrons, and audiences instantiated the era’s newly developing cultural identity within Mexican society or projected it outward as part of the transmission of knowledge about material production and aesthetic processes that developed across the network of transatlantic trade routes.

◊  ◊  ◊  ◊  ◊

The Art of Animal Activism: Critical Parameters
Alan C. Braddock, College of William and Mary; and Keri Cronin, Brock University, acbraddock@wm.edu and keri.cronin@ brocku.ca.

Today nonhuman animals figure more prominently in cultural, ethical, and scientific inquiry than ever before, thanks to recent research that has forced a significant reassessment of human exceptionalism, or speciesism. Lately some art historians have begun to consider these issues as well. All of this has taken place amid growing popular fascination with animals and backlash against their egregious, often concealed abuse in factory farming, entertainment, laboratories, and other areas. Animals have become subjects of vision, imagination, and activism—but also exploitation— like never before. This session examines the critical parameters of animal activism and advocacy in art since the eighteenth century. Papers should address important landmarks and historical contours of such art, assessing creative techniques used to advance particular goals. Consideration of why the discipline of art history has been slow to map this tradition and challenges involved in visualizing the interests of other beings are also encouraged.

◊  ◊  ◊  ◊  ◊

Huey Copeland and Krista Thompson, Northwestern University, h-copeland@northwestern.edu and krista-thompson@ northwestern.edu.

This session focuses on the aesthetic, historical, and theoretical terrain opened up by the “afrotrope.” This neologism refers to those visual forms that have emerged within and become central to the formation of African diasporic culture and identity in the modern era, from the slave ship icon produced by the Society for Effecting the Abolition of the Slave Trade (1788) to the “I AM A MAN” signs famously held up by striking Memphis sanitation workers (1968). The recurrence of such afrotropes makes palpable how subjects have appropriated widely available representational means only to undo their formal contours or to break apart their significatory logic. The afrotrope thus offers a vital heuristic through which to understand how visual motifs take on flesh over time and to reckon with what remains unknown or cast out of the visual field. We solicit papers that not only identify key afrotropes but also theorize how they elucidate new models of temporality, authorship, and cultural transmission.

◊  ◊  ◊  ◊  ◊

The Meaning of Marginalia in Early Modern Art and Theory, 1500–1800
Stephanie S. Dickey, Queen’s University, dickeys@queensu.ca.

This session seeks case studies exploring the practice of ann tation in early modern art and art criticism. The concern is not with printed marginalia (an established literary form) but with handwritten notes, a record of individual response bridging the published and the private. Artists annotated their own drawings and those of others they acquired. Connoisseurs jotted comments and sketches in the margins of treatises and sale catalogues. Familiar cases range from the postille added by Federico Zuccaro, Annibale Carracci, and other readers to copies of Vasari’s Vite (ca. 1568–1620) to Rembrandt’s inscribed drawing of Raphael’s Portrait of Baldassare Castiglione auctioned in Amsterdam (1639) and Gabriel de Saint-Aubin’s sketches in Basan’s catalogue of the Mariette collection (ca. 1778), but there is much more to discover. How can marginalia contribute to our understanding of specific artists and art lovers: their activities, ideas, networks? How do such notes trace fluctuations in market value or trends in taste and art theory?

◊  ◊  ◊  ◊  ◊

Taking Stock: Early Modern Art Now
Hanneke Grootenboer, University of Oxford; and Amy Knight Powell, University of California, Irvine, hanneke.grootenboer@ rsa.ox.ac.uk and amy.powell@uci.edu.

The relatively recent shift from the period terms “Renaissance” and “Baroque” to the more capacious “early modern” has coincided with an interrogation of the field’s relevance to the present. The new nomenclature insists that early modernity and our own (post-post) modernity share something. Investigation of precisely what they share has been among the most significant undertakings in the field over the past few decades. Far from being a turn away from history, this project of redefinition, at its best, has sought to recuperate the concept of history, wresting it from restrictive forms of historicism. It is now time to take stock of this work. We are particularly interested in projects that move beyond traditional historical paradigms, consider the relationship between history and theory, question modernism’s art-historical narrative, or demonstrate the critical and philosophical potential of early modern works of art.

◊  ◊  ◊  ◊  ◊

Museum Committee
New Studies in Museum, Gallery, and Exhibition History
Antoniette M. Guglielmo, Getty Leadership Institute; and Anne Manning, The Baltimore Museum of Art, toniguglielmo@yahoo.com and AManning@artbma.org

In support of the scholarly mission of the CAA to serve institutions in which art is exhibited, collected, studied, and interpreted, the Museum Committee offers this session for international scholarship addressing the history of museums, galleries, exhibitions, and related topics. This session also presents an opportunity to assess the demand for future sessions on new and emerging scholarship on this topic. We invite papers that explore the history of institutions and exhibitions, the work of individual pioneers in the formation of museums and galleries, and the evolution and professionalization of museum practices. Studies of associated social and cultural phenomena including the history of collecting and philanthropy are encouraged. We also welcome investigations of related entities such as commercial galleries and auction houses, in addition to historiographies of these topics and research questions associated with them. Submissions may be case studies or comparative analyses.

◊  ◊  ◊  ◊  ◊

Copy That: Painted Replicas and Repetitions before the Age of Appropriation
Valerie Hellstein, Willem de Kooning Foundation, vhellstein@gmail.com.

Marcel Duchamp’s Boîtes-en-valise, which contained “authorized ‘original’ copies” of his previous works, makes a farce out of the modern myth of authenticity. We now recognize the critique of originality inherent in the reproducibility and multiplicity of certain media, but what of painting? Artists from Jacques-Louis David and Gilbert Stuart to Henri Matisse and Clyfford Still have copied and made variations of their own paintings. Originals, copies, imitations, replicas, variants, versions all circulate in art-historical discourse, carrying different meaning, significance, and value depending on the time period and area of study. This panel seeks papers on art from any era up to the rise of postmodernity that explore autograph replicas of paintings. In what ways might such an inquiry change ingrained notions of painting? In what ways do the art market and other factors contribute to the production of such copies? How have countries or cultures handled autograph replicas and repetitions differently?

◊  ◊  ◊  ◊  ◊

Design Studies Forum
Design on Display: Staging Objects in the Museum and Beyond
Anca Lasc, Pratt Institute; and Paula Lupkin, University of North Texas, alasc@pratt.edu and Paula.Lupkin@unt.edu.

The theory and practice of object display has a long history, from cathedral crypts and early modern cabinets of curiosities to nineteenth- and twentieth-century museums, universal exhibitions, theme parks, chambers of horror, and department stores. Historians, curators, artists, entrepreneurs, and designers engage in complex experiential, pedagogical, and technological challenges involved in the design of environments for education, entertainment, and consumption. This panel explores evolving practices of presentation and display including but not limited to exhibition, retail and interior design, historical house museums, period rooms, and art installations. Seeking to chart a history of display design, we invite papers that examine the cross-fertilization of ideas and practices related to the display of objects in different historical contexts and spatial layouts. What does the history and theory of presentation and display teach us about the design of interior environments, and what emergent trends might shape the future of display?

◊  ◊  ◊  ◊  ◊

American Society for Hispanic Art Historical Studies
Polychrome Sculpture in Iberia and the Americas, 1200–1800
Ilenia Colón Mendoza, University of Central Florida, Ilenia. ColonMendoza@ucf.edu.

This panel focuses on aspects of polychrome sculpture produced in Iberia and Colonial Latin America from 1200 to 1800 that are specifically related to writing and literature. Of interest is the production and technique of polychrome sculpture in wood, wax, and mixed media through the study of treatises and their relationship to the production of sculpture. Research related to primary-source documentation of contracts and patronage is also welcome. Papers may address how mystical writings and liturgical practices influenced image making and how these images were understood in the context of religious pageantry and procession. Contemporary accounts describing sculpture in literature and plays that reveal the social and cultural status of sculpture are also relevant.

◊  ◊  ◊  ◊  ◊

Connoisseurship—or Connoisseurs?
Catherine B. Scallen, Case Western Reserve University, cbs2@case. edu

Connoisseurship is a practice in the history of art that has been theorized, valorized, vilified, rejected, and renewed. Several sessions at the annual CAA conference over the past twenty years have been devoted to its study. But is it appropriate to discuss connoisseurship as an objectifiable practice when it can be argued that by its very nature it is an individualized pursuit? The problematic nature of group connoisseurship, entered into so optimistically in the 1960s by the Rembrandt Research Project, was demonstrated by the many critiques of the results of this group, its internal discord, and its subsequent reorganization under the leadership of one connoisseur, Ernst van de Wetering. In this session we will consider whether connoisseurship as a practice is best understood through the study of individual connoisseurs, whose connoisseurship can be problematized in light of their relationships with other art-world participants, such as art dealers, museum professionals, private collectors, and art critics.

◊  ◊  ◊  ◊  ◊

The Mystery of Masonry Brought to Light: Freemasonry and Art from the Eighteenth Century until Now
Reva Wolf, State University of New York at New Paltz, wolfr@newpaltz.edu.

Recent studies by the historians Margaret Jacob, Paul Kléber Monad, and others have drawn attention to the significance of Freemasonry, with its unique blend of reason and mystery, in eighteenth-century thought and politics. Art held an important, if as yet underappreciated, position in the evolution of Freemasonry, the very name of which reflects the fundamental place of architecture in its vision. To what effect were the arts enlisted to present Freemasonry’s promotion of constitutional government or to portray its cryptic symbols? Of what consequence were the satires that mocked Freemasonry (including by Hogarth, himself a Freemason)? What impact did Freemasonry’s advocacy of religious tolerance have on art (was Goya a Freemason?)? Proposals are invited for papers exploring the role of art, and of individual artists, in the rise, development, self-image, and/or criticism of Freemasonry, whether in Europe, the Americas, or elsewhere.

◊  ◊  ◊  ◊  ◊

Note (added 2 April 2015) — The original version of this posting did not include the session on Eros and Enlightenment.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: