Artscapes: Urban Art and The Public - An Inter-disciplinary Conference on Art and Urban Spaces - 27-28 June 2013

full name / name of organization: 
University of Kent - Artscapes Group
contact email: 

Call for Abstracts

Artistic interventions in the permeable urban context can alter and often tamper the contours of the contemporary cityscape; they can also be critical in the development of new forms of urban culture. While providing a perfect arena for artists and researchers to investigate the consolidated mechanisms of art institutions and to challenge the normative regulations concerning the use of public spaces, the new practices of urban art enclose an organic civic participation and a conscious collective criticism. From this point of view, contemporary urban space seems to become the vessel for a new understanding of art that extends its reach to the community both locally and globally (through digital dissemination), inviting participation and interaction and creating physical and virtual spaces for a new form of urban experience and aesthetic pleasure.

This interdisciplinary conference hosted by the University of Kent aims to provide a forum for discussion and, through keynote lectures and selected presentations, to build a new understanding of the relationship between art and urban places. In what way can urban art engage with its audiences and create public spaces – material, virtual or imagined – within which people can identify themselves, discover new forms of interaction with the community and shape new modes of aesthetic behaviours?

This conference aims at bringing together scholars with diverse interests and approaches to its subject, and we welcome abstracts from a range of disciplines including art, architecture, geography, sociology, philosophy, anthropology, history, politics and economics and urban planning.

Examples of subjects for invited paper presentations, projects and works in progress include but are not limited to:

•forms of urban art
•street styles and urban behaviours
•architecture and art
•digital re-enaction of physical interventions
•city culture and urban transformation
•urban photography
•film and the city
•urban performance and social protest
•landscapes of urban art
•street art and political engagement
•the street and its aesthetics
•community interaction and architecture
•negotiating public spaces
•artistic interventions projects

Invited Speakers
Maurizio Cinquegrani (University of Kent)
Carl Lavery (Aberystwyth University)
Jonathan Vickery (University of Warwick)

Manila Castoro (School of Arts, UoK), Carolina Vasilikou (School of Architecture, UoK), Angelo Cioffi (School of Arts, UoK).

Submission process
We invite submissions of short abstracts (500 words) on urban art and public spaces, plus a brief biography (100 words). The time slot for presentations is 20 minutes with a 15 minute session for questions at the end of each panel. Abstracts should be prepared for blind-refereeing.

Please send your abstract as an attachment (.pdf or .doc) to:

The subject of the email should contain the words Artscapes Submission.

The body of the email should include author(s) name, affiliation, abstract title, 5 keywords, brief biography and the email address you would like us to use to communicate with you.

Deadline for submissions: 26 March 2013.
Notification of acceptance/non-acceptance: 8 April 2013.
(Please let us know if you require acknowledgement of receipt for your submission.)


Postgraduate students: free attendance
Other researchers: £ 5.00

Registration will be required prior to the conference. Registration opens on the 1st of June 2013. Details on how to register will follow in due course.