Nostalgia and Contemporary Art (College Art Association 2023, In-Person)

deadline for submissions: 
August 31, 2022
full name / name of organization: 
College Art Association
contact email: 

Session title: Nostalgia and Contemporary Art

Session will present: In-person at CAA's 111th Annual Conference, February 15–18, 2023 at the New York Midtown Hilton

Chair, Kristen Galvin, University of Colorado at Colorado Springs

Email Address:

Since the late 20th century cultural expressions of nostalgia have proliferated across visual cultural forms on a global scale. However, scholars within the burgeoning and interdisciplinary field of nostalgia studies have concentrated more on mass media, geographical, and political nostalgias, as opposed to interrogating the ways in which nostalgia specifically operates in the contemporary art world. To begin to effectively map the state of “contemporary art nostalgias,” this panel seeks to examine the diverse ways in which nostalgia influences the contemporary art world and shapes its “objects.” The panel aims to answer questions such as: how do contemporary art practices mobilize or challenge reflective, reactionary, restorative, and/or radical modes of nostalgia? How does a reliance on nostalgia question concepts of contemporaneity? If nostalgia is understood as an effective marketing strategy and gimmick, how should art historians, critics and curators contend with these market-friendly and ready art products? Papers may consider contemporary artworks, artists, exhibitions, and distribution and exchange networks from any geographic region. Proposals from artists and curators addressing professional practice are also welcome. Submissions that address frameworks of Afro-nostalgia, queer nostalgia, imperial nostalgia, art market studies, the post-critical, and the post-digital are especially encouraged to apply.

*See the CAA call for participation page with more info:

Please send the following via email to session chair by August 31, 2022.

  1. Completed proposal form (click to download).
  2. A shortened CV (close to 2 pages).
  3. (Optional) Documentation of work; limit to five images as a single PDF, especially for sessions in which artists might discuss their own practice.