CFP 19.07.2021

5 Sessions at RSA (Dublin, 30 Mar-2 Apr 22)

Dublin, Ireland, 30.03.–02.04.2022 Redaktion

[1] Michelangelo and Artistic Media: Multiplicity or Unity?
[2] Dark Jokes and Laughing Artists: Early Modern Art and Humor
[3] Sacred Music, Ceremony and Architecture in Transcultural Perspectives
[4] Making Green Worlds
[5] Shores, Coastlines, and Horizons


[1] Michelangelo and Artistic Media: Multiplicity or Unity?

From: Angeliki Pollali (
Date: 16 July 2021
Deadline: 2 August 2021

Session organized by Angeliki Pollali (Deree-The American College of Greece) and Berthold Hub (University of Vienna)

In Vasari’s Vite, Michelangelo is the only artist credited with the attributes of all three arti: Michelagnolo Buonarotti, pittore, scultore, et architetto. While Vasari presents the different artistic media as distinct, they were closely interrelated in the sixteenth century. Modern scholarship has treated the different media in Michelangelo’s work extensively, albeit separately, focusing initially on painting and sculpture, and subsequently on architecture. The intersection of the different arti has comparatively received less attention. Relative scholarship has focused primarily on specific projects, which inherently combine different media, such as the New Sacristy in San Lorenzo. In some cases, drawing has been examined as an integral part of Michelangelo’s practice. It has been suggested, for instance, that figurative drawing constitutes the basis of the artist’s conception of architecture in terms of disegno.

This session intends to build on this discussion and to shift the focus to the interrelation of the different media/practices in Michelangelo’s work. It invites explorations of new intersections of media or a re-examination of existing ones. Contributions on architecture (conceived and/or materialized) are particularly welcome. Given that our modern art historical specializations reflect the compartmentalization of the artistic media, we propose to examine the characteristics that bring unity to Michelangelo’s work. The crossovers in the different arti/media can shed new light on the artist as well as sixteenth century practice.

Please submit the following to Angeliki Pollali ( and Berthold Hub ( by August 2, 2021:

- full name, current affiliation, and email address
- paper title (15-word maximum)
- abstract (150-word maximum)
- CV (2 page maximum)
- PhD or other terminal degree completion date (past or expected)
- primary discipline (list of RSA disciplines for 2021-22)

Note that presenters will have to be active RSA members.


[2] Dark Jokes and Laughing Artists: Early Modern Art and Humor

From: Hollie Buttery (
Date: 18 July 2021
Deadline: 4 August 2021

This panel focuses on humor and art in the years 1450-1670. Humor relies on dialogue: born from the collision and unexpected juxtaposition of people or ideas. For art historians, the question of humour is thus a conundrum. With context obscured by historical distance, how exactly do we recover and understand a humorous tone? Such questions are especially pertinent for objects with darker subjects, where violence coexists alongside potential laughter. How does the ambiguity of humor affect the sharp precision of cruelty? We invite paper proposals centering on material that brings light to these or similar questions. Work on all genres and media, as well as multidisciplinary approaches, are welcome.

Please send the following to Hollie Buttery and Sarah Rosenthal (, by 4 August:

- paper title (15-word maximum)
- paper abstract (150-word maximum)
- resume (.pdf or .doc upload)
- a short bio
- PhD or other terminal degree completion year (past or expected)
- full name, current affiliation, and email address
- primary RSA discipline


[3] Sacred Music, Ceremony and Architecture in Transcultural Perspectives

From: Bronwen Wilson
Date: 17 July 2021
Deadline: 30 July 2021

Sacred sound, space and ceremony were intertwined in perceptions of the divine in the early modern world. We seek papers that explore aural and sonic dimensions of religious practices and architectural spaces, particularly proposals that engage with transcultural interactions. Multisensorial dimensions of religious settings (and their critiques) often come into sharper focus in the context of religious and political conflicts. While the sacred permeated societal and political structures of early modern communities, sacred settings were largely determined by both local ecclesiastical and Indigenous models and precedents, and by those that were transposed, such as colonial practices that accompanied European missionary activities in Africa, Asia, and the Americas. These settings were symbolic physical expressions of a specific faith and also performative multisensorial spaces for ceremonies and rites infused with music and sounds. Spaces and music were shaped by on-going translations and reinventions of local and imported devotional and creative practices.

Managing bodies and inciting experiences of the sacred, liturgical performances drew on deliberate architectural and sonic relationships between inclusion/exclusion in the holy site through barriers, screens and curtains, colours, light and materials. Rhythms, sounds, gestures and scents activated spiritual and bodily experiences. Soundscapes of sacred spaces (consisting, for example, of prayers, recitations, incantations, chants, polyphony, mass or other religious musical expressions) were influenced by architectural designs, decoration and acoustics of sacred spaces. Architects and builders also modified or developed new configurations of sacred spaces to meet both sacred ceremonial requirements and also increasingly complex musical compositions.

With the aim of fostering dialogue across disciplines, geographies, and cultures, we are seeking papers that explore the complex relationships between sacred space, sound and ceremony in the early modern period, including (but not limited to):

- sound in transcultural contexts (processes of appropriation, translation, reinvention; as a medium of resistance).
- architectural and liturgical traditions or soundscapes of specific sacred spaces in different geographical settings
- theories of acoustics in relation to architecture and decoration
- theories of sound as manifestations of the metaphysical and transcendence
- politics, gender and sound of sacred spaces
- case studies of composers/works who wrote for specific sacred spaces and/or architects who modified or developed new buildings for composers or new genres or soundscapes of different faiths
- sacred architectures of different religions and their interactions with spiritual sound and performance
- spiritual soundscapes in relation to sacred buildings and manifestations of the divine
- using digital technologies to recreate lost spatial and sonic experiences of sacred contexts of the past

Please send proposals for individual papers to all three organizers by Friday, July 30 2021:
Janie Cole, Africana Studies, (
Bronwen Wilson, Art History (
Evan A. MacCarthy, Music (

Please include:
- paper title (15-word maximum)
- abstract (150-word maximum) abstract guidelines
- resume (.pdf or .doc upload) 4-page max
- PhD or other terminal degree completion date (past or expected)
- primary discipline

Notification of acceptance by Friday, August 6, 2021

Please note: individuals may submit one paper abstract for consideration at RSA.


[4] Making Green Worlds

From: Bronwen Wilson
Date: 17 July 2021
Deadline: 25 July 2021

How did the global escalation of environmental devastation generate the creation of green worlds in the early modern period? Invoking Harry Berger Jr., this panel takes up questions raised by ecocritical studies and growing interest in the real and imaginary green worlds of early modernity. Green worlds are created by practices like gardening, town planning, agriculture, and land reclamation; they are also fabricated in the fictive worlds of painting, performance, theatre, and poetry. These human-made environments are conceived as second worlds, controlled spaces that exist alongside the natural world and vie with nature itself in fashioning an artfully designed setting. The focus will be on the role of visual imagery that advances new understandings of the world as humanmade. The approach pays attention to constant, on-going creative processes of engagement with the earth to foreground critical and imaginative elements of worldmaking processes that occurred in tandem with a notable escalation in environmental devastation unleashed by globalization’s exploitation of people and resources.

Making Green Worlds builds on the collaborative research project, Making Worlds: Art, Materiality, Early Modern Globalization

Potential topics include:
- transcultural spaces: gardens, plantations, waterways, coastlines, moving vessels, utopias
- resource extraction and management – mining, quarrying, fishing, hunting, agriculture, land reclamation
- labouring bodies, tools, practical manuals
- visual and material forms that embody, employ, or contribute to degradation and renewal
- phenomena that challenge human experience: mountains, waterfalls, ice, caves, storms, rainbows, earthquakes
- processes and systems of managing and classifying land and materials
- Indigenous knowledge and lifeways
- environmental and elemental iconographies
- design ecologies

Please send proposals for papers to both organizers by July 25th with return notification of acceptance by July 31:
- paper title (15-word maximum)
- abstract (150-word maximum) abstract guidelines
- resume (.pdf or .doc upload) (4 pages max)
- PhD or other terminal degree completion date (past or expected)

Angela Vanhaelen (
Bronwen Wilson — Discipline Rep for Art History (


[5] Shores, Coastlines, and Horizons

From: Bronwen Wilson
Date: 17 July 2021
Deadline: 25 July 2021

In Rising: Dispatches from the New American Shore, Elizabeth Rush describes “a new form of climate anxiety” called “endsickness” while kayaking along the coast of the Gulf of Maine. “Like motion sickness or sea sickness,” Rush writes, “endsickness is its own kind of vertigo” a response to a “world moving in unusual ways, toward...a kind of event horizon.”

While the effects of sea-level rise are integral to current discussions of climate change, early moderns, importantly, were engaged in multiple efforts to manage and contain a tenuous coastal relationship between land and sea. These efforts frequently relied on newly made, often inexact, cartographic maps that drew from measurements between stars, planets, and the horizon.

This panel seeks papers on narrative and representational aspects of the early modern distinctions between land, sea, and sky, and the environmental concerns these distinctions foreground in the present.

Topics may include, but are not limited to:
- the allegorical and rhetorical role oceans play in early modern conceptions of environmental catastrophe
- shoreline events and their historic horizons
- cartography and the mapping of changing/ shifting coastlines
- the Atlantic and Pacific coasts, and their different critical modes
- transcultural and trans-geographical trade: goods, raw materials, cultural practices, diseases
- visual imagery and material forms of shores, coastlines, horizons

This panel forms part of “Earth, Sea, Sky” (ESS), an international research network collaborating with, and under the umbrella of, Oecologies. ESS fosters new international dialogue in studies of medieval and early modern literature and visual culture. Its central aim is to examine the varied and contested premodern approaches to the natural world, as well as how this premodern archive resonates with contemporary concerns around environmental degradation and global warming.

Please send the following to all three organizers by July 25th (return notification of acceptance by July 31.)
Tom White (,
Tiffany Jo Werth (,
Bronwen Wilson — Discipline Rep for Art History (

Please include the following:
- paper title (15-word maximum)
- abstract (150-word maximum) abstract guidelines
- resume (.pdf or .doc upload) (4 pages max)
- PhD or other terminal degree completion date (past or expected)

Please note that an individual may submit one paper abstract for consideration at RSA.

CFP: 5 Sessions at RSA (Dublin, 30 Mar-2 Apr 22). In:, 19.07.2021. Letzter Zugriff 19.04.2024. <>.