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South-South Axes of Global Art from the Nineteenth Century to Today

Les circulations artistiques Sud-Sud du XIXe siècle à nos jours

Artl@s Conference

Conférence Artl@s

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Published on Monday, January 19, 2015 by Céline Guilleux

Summary

The decentered internationalism claimed by the Havana, Dakar, or Gwangju biennales, that the Venice biennale is now trying to echo by awarding Angola’s pavilion the 2013 Golden Lion, invites us to depart from an exclusively North Atlantic art history. Historicizing and measuring the circulation of art on the former margins is now a decisive task if we want to evidence, nuance, or contest the “provincialization” of Europe and North America in recent art history. Artl@s’ upcoming conference aims to gather an international group of researchers to collectively investigate what we call “South-South” axes since the nineteenth century.

Announcement

Argument

The decentered internationalism claimed by the Havana, Dakar, or Gwangju biennales, that the Venice biennale is now trying to echo by awarding Angola’s pavilion the 2013 Golden Lion, invites us to depart from an exclusively North Atlantic art history. Historicizing and measuring the circulation of art on the former margins is now a decisive task if we want to evidence, nuance, or contest the “provincialization” of Europe and North America in recent art history. Artl@s’ upcoming conference aims to gather an international group of researchers to collectively investigate what we call “South-South” axes since the nineteenth century.

To speak in terms of fixed entities such as “North” and “South” risks reproducing a dualism that was never fully expunged throughout decolonization and the long postcolonial era. It is to assume that for many, the world is split into a binary: into privileged, or advanced, and oppressed, or “developing,” halves. In art history, even methodologies such as cultural transfer or connected history have not fully succeeded in decentering scholarship from North Atlantic and its unilateral ties to the world. Thus, our conference is interested in regions that have been marginalized by academic priorities, probably more so than by actual artistic circulations. Furthermore, this condition of being non-hegemonical, or marginal could indeed extend to sites or subjects that appear central. That is, the “Global South” may identify an elastic periphery. In that sense, South-South interactions may cover a broad spectrum of expectations, strategies and power plays that we hope to put in perspective.

The June 2015 Artl@s Conference welcomes presentation proposals that can shed light on the place and role of artistic circulations between regions that have frequently been treated as localities rather than spaces of circulation. This may include the cities and countries of the Middle East, Central and Southern Asia, the South Pacific, Africa, and Latin America. Case studies of circulations, intersections or communications between artists, movements or institutions may allow us to challenge the geographical configuration of global art, at different but often interlaced scales, from individual trajectories to institutional networks to pan-regional communities and political affiliations.

We call for studies that examine the formation and the impediments of South-South circulations. We will not merely address the contemporary moment, in which the term “Global South” has gained its relevance and usage, but also South-South formations from the very beginnings of decolonization to the present day. Our international and transdisciplinary gathering aims to confront the heterogeneous logics of the movements involved, to retrace the diverse historical geographies of the circuits and networks they activate, and, ultimately, to uncover common patterns and hierarchies—a significant, as-of-yet unrealized challenge. Other contributions might explore the extent to which some South-South formations actually initiate in the North, or whether certain intellectual productions that find legitimacy in the South can be traced to the North. We also want to ask if South-South axes are necessarily political, particularly in a contemporary art world that threatens to recast the periphery as a commodity.

This conference is sponsored by ARTL@S, an international research group based at École Normale Supérieure, Paris, that is devoted to a cartographic and transnational history of art. It will take place between Wednesday, June 17 and Friday, June 19, 2015, at the École normale supérieure, Paris, 45 rue d’Ulm.

Submission guidelines

Each proposal, in French or English, should include:      

  • Names and email of the author(s);       
  • Institutional affiliation;                
  • CV and publications
  • Presentation title (up to 200 characters)            
  • Abstract (up to 500 words)

Presenters will be given 20 minutes speaking each and 10 minutes for discussion.

Please send your submission to Olivier Marcel (olivier.marcel@ens.fr)

no later than February 20, 2015.

We will notify contributors of acceptance by Monday 16th March 2015.

Scientific committee

  • T.J. Demos, Reader in the Department of Art History, University College London
  • Anthony Gardner, Associate Professor at the University of Oxford
  • Andrea Giunta, Professor at the University of Austin, Texas, USA
  • Dominique Malaquais, Senior researcher at the Centre d'Etudes des Mondes Africains, CNRS
  • Zahia Rahmani, Director of the program Art et Mondialisation, Institut National d'Histoire de l'Art, Paris
  • Sven Spieker, Art Margins, University of California, Santa Barbara

Organizing committee

  • Catherine Dossin, Assistant Professor at Purdue University, Vice Director of Artl@s
  • Béatrice Joyeux-Prunel, Associate Professor for Contemporary Art, ENS, Director of Artl@s
  • Olivier Marcel, Artl@s postdoc, ENS/IHMC
  • Daniel Quiles, Assistant Professor at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago

Places

  • École normale supérieure, 45 rue d’Ulm
    Paris, France (75005)

Date(s)

  • Friday, February 20, 2015

Keywords

  • art, circulation, décolonisation, périphérie, provincialisation

Contact(s)

  • Olivier Marcel
    courriel : olivier [dot] marcel [at] ens [dot] fr

Reference Urls

Information source

  • Olivier Marcel
    courriel : olivier [dot] marcel [at] ens [dot] fr

To cite this announcement

« South-South Axes of Global Art from the Nineteenth Century to Today », Call for papers, Calenda, Published on Monday, January 19, 2015, https://calenda.org/314509

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