boundaries of the im|material OSU May 4-5, 2012

full name / name of organization: 
Ohio State Art History Graduate Student Association

Call for Papers

Art is continuously engaged in the negotiation of positive and negative spaces: the palpable and the intangible, the actual and the potential, the unconditional and the contingent. At the same time, works of art that seek to transcend their objecthood or to emphasize their ephemerality remain anchored in physical and physiological events. In this conference, we seek to call into question the nature of the relationship between these supposed binaries, as grounded in experiencing an artwork. The notion of a work of art that subverts its own physicality is intrinsic to art throughout the centuries and across cultures, resonating with ancient and modern concepts. We welcome submissions from art history and allied critical and historical fields that navigate the connections between the material and the immaterial as related to aesthetic experiences and practices.

Potential topics may include the following:
•Lost, unfinished, and/or non-existent art objects
•Aesthetics of absence and nothingness
•The status of the image in the digital age
•Transcendence in meditative art
•Documenting and archiving memory
•Funerary and commemorative art
•Production and commodification
•Ruins, decay, and the reconstitution of the trace
•Telepresence and corporeal mediation

We welcome submissions from graduate students at all stages of their studies. Please send an abstract of no more than 300 words and a CV to: by January 5, 2012. Any questions may also be sent to this address.

The keynote speaker for the conference will be James Meyer. Formerly the Winship Distinguished Research Associate Professor of Art History at Emory University, he is currently a curator of modern and contemporary art at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C. Meyer is the author of Minimalism: Art and Polemics in the Sixties and the editor of Minimalism, The AIDS Crisis is Ridiculous and Other Writings 1986-2003, and Cuts: Texts 1959-2004. A contributing editor of Artforum, he has published articles in OCTOBER, Art Bulletin, and Art Journal.