UPDATE: [Cultural-Historical] Art, Fact, and Artifact - Keynotes (McLeod; Shaw) and CFP reminder (6/01/08; 1/08/09-1/10/09)

full name / name of organization: 
Matthew P. Brown

College Book Art Association Biennial Conference


January 8-10, 2009

hosted by the University of Iowa Center for the Book (UICB)

Call for Proposals
**Proposals due June 1, 2008**

The art of the book has been at once visionary and documentary, imagining a
future that has yet to exist while finding inspiration from the resources
of the past. The first biennial conference of the College Book Arts
Association seeks to bridge the worlds of book art, book history, cultural
criticism, and curatorial work through appreciation of the book as an
aesthetic sensorium. Scholarship, artistic practice, and the digital age
have evoked for us the multimedia nature of the book experience. Animated
by practices that define anew the cultural record, contemporary book
creators unsettle the categories whereby art is valued and appreciated,
making new objects that express the range of human experience. Roused by
research into the materiality of texts, humanities scholars and
institutional curators have summoned new facts to explain communication
technologies, writing an alternative history of word and image in the book
format. Pressed by political urgencies, artists and researchers have
measured the meanings of art and fact through bookwork that serves as
cultural criticism. At a time when the book arts have never been more
vital, “Art, Fact, and Artifact” builds from these energies and seeks
presentations, papers, and studio demonstrations from artists and scholars
interested in the future, present, and past of the book as an expressive form.


Randall McLeod, Department of English, University of Toronto

Tate Shaw, Preacher’s Biscuit Books and Visual Studies Workshop, University
of Rochester

Along with session programming, the conference agenda will include
exhibits, tours of facilities, open discussion time, and portfolio review.
Further details will be forthcoming.

For the conference program, the organizers invite submissions for
individual presentations, pre-formed panels, and studio demonstrations.


Artist presentations of current work or work-in-progress

Studio demonstrations: process/experimentation/resurgence

Questions of materiality: the actual, the physical, the virtual, the digital

The book as document

Curating and collecting: what do we want? how do we know?

The procedural turn, then and now

Flat art, spatial art, temporal art, book art

Intimacy and the book: sex, touch, the private, the public

Institutions and theories of value

The book as witness

Questions of practice: modeling methods

Ideologies of the book

Craft perspectives: the hand in the work

History and documentation: writing our history and our now

Humble books and an aesthetics of the ordinary

Conceptualism, bookwork, and installation

The role of criticism

Space, pace, and plane

The theory and practice of exhibition

Reading and the hand-operated codex

The archive as muse


Send proposals as email attachments to:



University of Iowa Center for the Book
216 North Hall
University of Iowa
Iowa City, IA 52242
Attn: Art, Fact, and Artifact

All proposal submissions should include: proposal title; name and contact
information; a biography or vita of participants; audio-visual needs.

INDIVIDUAL PROPOSALS: A 200-250 word description of a paper (abstract for a
20-minute talk), of an artist presentation (20 minutes), or of a studio
demonstration (include time requirements for demonstrations).

ORGANIZED SESSIONS: a 250-word overview of proposal. Organizers should
assemble 3 speakers for a paper session (include individual paper abstracts
in addition to overview), 3-4 presenters for an artist presentation
(include individual descriptions in addition to overview), 1 moderator and
up to 4 contributors for a panel/roundtable discussion, and 2-3 studio
specialists for a demonstration.

FOR ARTIST PRESENTATIONS, please include 5-10 representative examples of
work to be shown (jpegs, pdf or powerpoint).

FOR STUDIO DEMONSTRATIONS, detail facilities requirements, including
equipment, materials & supplies, and space requirements. Please be specific.


Graduate students: the CBAA encourages graduate student participation. The
UICB has secured funding to help defray costs for student presenters. To
apply, include a brief letter describing your need for assistance.

Presenters must be members of the College Book Art Association. To join,
visit the CBAA website at http://www.collegebookart.org/

For more information about the call for proposals, contact:

Matthew P. Brown (matthew-p-brown_at_uiowa.edu), or
Julia Leonard (julia-leonard_at_uiowa.edu).

For more information about the UICB, see our website at

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Received on Tue May 20 2008 - 12:47:51 EDT