HomePostdoctoral Fellowship "Spatial art history"

HomePostdoctoral Fellowship "Spatial art history"

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Published on Wednesday, November 28, 2012 by Loïc Le Pape


The École normale supérieure (Paris), the LabEx TransferS, and Artl@s (a digital humanities project sponsored by the Agence Nationale pour la Recherche) are pleased to announce a two-year postdoctoral position in the field of Spatial Art History. The postdoctoral fellow will participate in the activities of Artl@s (www.artlas.ens.fr) while developing an independent research project pertaining to related questions in this field. Through his or her involvement within the international and transdisciplinary Artl@s team, the fellow will acquire valuable experience, gain expertise, and develop his or her academic network, thereby increasing potential career prospects within the international academic community.



The successful candidate will have a PhD in art history or in a related field (i.e. History, Geography, Sociology, etc…), received no earlier than 2008, and will specialize in issues related to geography of art, global art history, or cultural heritage in a transnational perspective. He or she may work on any region or period between the 18th and the 21st centuries; however, preference will be given to non-Western European and non-North-American projects, and/or world-art historical or global art-historical projects. Candidates are invited to propose research projects that can benefit from the tools Artl@s has developed (quantitative and serial analysis, databases, geographical information systems (GIS), digital cartography). The right candidate will also demonstrate a keen interest in digital humanities, especially in databases and cartography.

While previous experience in these fields, along with web development and GIS, is not a prerequisite, basic knowledge and a willingness to acquire expertise in those areas is essential. The postdoctoral fellow will indeed have to work with the Artl@s’ database, GIS interface and website.

Likewise, fluency in French is not required, but some basic knowledge and a commitment to learn French and become fluent while living in Paris is. Intensive courses can be taken by the successful candidate at École normale supérieure for free.


Artl@s is a group of young scholars exploring questions about the challenges of Global Art History with spatial and transnational approach, and digital methods. We are part of Labex TransferS (www.transfers.ens.fr ), a multi-departmental research group whose members are fully engaged in original scholarship on cultural circulations. Artl@s and Labex Transfers are linked to the École Normale Supérieure (www.ens.fr ), a “grande école” with a long and distinguished tradition of excellence in research and teaching.

Artl@s’ goal is to produce a spatial history of literature and the arts. Our research is based on a transnational geographic method and a digital approach. We aim to enlarge the traditional understanding of the history of art and of literature by adopting rigorous transnational, serial, quantitative and cartographic procedures. This international, interdisciplinary, and collective perspective tends to contribute to a “Global Art History”, in a way that transcends the traditional form of collected monographs on individual areas. Artl@s also endeavors to share, to compare and to enhance databases as well as to process collective data with effective digital tools.

Artl@s’ activities and publications are structured around five axes:

  • A history of the geographies of art and literature in modern metropolitan areas (particularly in Paris from the 19th through the 21st centuries), analyzing the location of various artistic activities, their spatial evolutions, and their relationship to other specific cartographies (social, economic, etc.)
  • A history of artistic circulations since the beginning of the modern era
  • A  history of translation (especially of literature and writings on art) since the beginning of the modern era
  • A transnational history of cultural heritage (18th-20th centuries)
  • A history of the uses of cartography in art

For more information, consult our detailed website at: www.artlas.ens.fr

  • Yearly appointment: Euro 30.000
  • 2 years, 38 hrs a week


  • Participate in the Academic committee the bi-monthly Artl@s workshop
  • Organize the activities for one of the project axes in close cooperation with its coordinator
  • Assist with the publication of the results on Artl@s’ website
  • Organize and supervise the publication of an issue of the semi-annual Artl@s Bulletin on a topic of his or her choice
  • Collaborate on the organization of June 2015 conclusive conference, both from a academic and a logistic point of view

Application Procedures

Completed applications are due on January 7th, 2013, for a preliminary overview at the Selection Committee’s meeting.
Applicants are asked to submit:

  • A cover letter, in English, in which the candidates express their interest in Artl@s and their expertise in the practice of a spatial history of arts, Global art history, the history of international artistic relationships and cultural exchanges, or in quantitative and cartographic art history.
  • An abstract of their doctoral dissertation (maximum two pages double-spaced)
  • A project proposal in which they describe their research project (maximum five pages double-spaced)
  • A CV with a list of publications
  • A writing sample
  • The completed application form (see below)
  • Two letters of recommendation.

Please send the material to:

“Artlas Postdoctoral Fellowship”
Béatrice Joyeux-Prunel, Associate Professor
Département d’Histoire et Théorie des Arts,
École Normale Supérieure,
45 rue d’Ulm, 75230, Paris cedex 05, France

Applicants must also send an electronic version of the application and the related materials to: beatrice.joyeux-prunel@ens.fr and michela.passini@ens.fr with “Artlas Postdoctoral Fellowship” in the subject line.


The Committee will interview a few selected applicants, either in New York during the second week of February (for candidates living in the United States), or in Paris during the first week of March (for candidates living in Europe), or via videoconference. Applicants selected for these interviews will be notified before January 20, 2013.

Notification of final selection will occur in mid-March, 2013.

For further details, please email beatrice.joyeux-prunel@ens.fr (Subject: Questions about Artlas postdoctoral fellowship).


  • 45 rue d'Ulm
    Paris, France (75005)


  • Monday, January 07, 2013


  • histoire de l'art, histoire spatiale, cartographie, humanités numériques, études transnationales,


  • Béatrice Joyeux-Prunel
    courriel : Beatrice [dot] Joyeux-Prunel [at] unige [dot] ch

Information source

  • Béatrice Joyeux-Prunel
    courriel : Beatrice [dot] Joyeux-Prunel [at] unige [dot] ch

To cite this announcement

« Postdoctoral Fellowship "Spatial art history" », Scholarship, prize and job offer, Calenda, Published on Wednesday, November 28, 2012, https://calenda.org/229295

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