Call for Papers for the Panel:
Histories and Imaginaries: European Art versus American Art
(As part of the Third Euroacademia Global Conference 'Europe Inside-Out: Europe and Europeaness Exposed to Plural Observers', 15 -16 March, Grand Majestic Plaza, Prague, Czech Republic)
Perceptions of history and historicity are considered to substantially influence and configure the sphere of imaginary representations. The universe of arts is the main environment where essentializations of conceived symbols or reactions to such essentializations are most emphatically expressed and visible. It is an often made argument that arts do reflect in a substantive manner the signifiers of particular social imaginary constructs influenced by given dominant elements of a specific social order. That’s why a cleavage between the American and the European art is addressed as reflecting distinctive ways of looking at the past and living the memorialization, quotation and reference to a patrimonial inheritance that can stand as a ground for artistic interpretative construction, de-construction, nostalgia or call for radical innovation.
A rough simplification of the American Art/European Art nexus, that disregards the extremely diverse representations free from the bounds of specific imaginary geographies, emphasizes as a main argument the strong connection between the European artistic expression and historicity while the American art is linked to a more limited historical trajectory and more defined by the directness and immediacy of artistic representation. That is to say in simplified terms that European artistic expression relies on and relates to norms emerged from its historical tradition while American art reflects the imaginary universe directly experienced by the artist.
A different argument used for separating America and Europe in terms of artistic production comes from interpreting the social and economic models that divide the concrete realities in which the artistic expression is configured. The social and economic models can influence the ways of production, promotion and perception of art. The strongly subsidized European economies and the interventionist political systems are envisaged as providers of support, access and voice to the most diverse artistic movements and productions. The American free trade vision and support for limited intervention of the government in cultural production in understood as providing free and deregulated access to artists to a world where creation is an extension of individuality and the artistic object an item to be judged by its exchange value.
Of course these rough interpretations of a perceived cultural divide between Europe and America stand close to the border of misconceptions. On the opposite side European art is often regarded as excessively complicated and historicist while American artistic environment provides access to a free, meaningful and autonomous development of the artistic expression. Despite their excessive simplification, these perceived differences between American and European art are still invoked as distinctions standing up in the 21st century.
This panel seeks to explore the limited validity and also the miss-conceptions inherent to such circulating arguments and to discuss deeper where the division between American and European art persists if it still does in such a culturally interconnected world as the one today.
The panel welcomes papers on (but not limited to):
- American versus European Art: Persisting Differences
- Confronting Misguided Interpretations of American/European Cultural Divisions
- Cultural Policies and Support for Artistic Production: Are There Two Different Ways?
- Historicity and the Past in Artistic Representations
- Market, Exchange Value and the Autonomy of the Artist
- Nostalgia and Memory: Artistic Ways of Seeing the Past
- State Intervention and Cultural Policies in Support for Artistic Expression
- Galleries and Artistic Inclusion/Exclusion Nexuses
- Education Through Arts
- Paris versus New-York
- Cultural Interconnections and the Disappearance of Geographical Boundaries of Imaginary
- Artistic Movements: America/Europe
- Performance Arts and the Challenges to Past and Boundaries
- Monuments, Public Arts and Views of The Past: European and American Sites of Memorialization
In order to apply, please send a 300 words abstract together with the details of your affiliation to applicationeuroacademia.eu
For full details of the conference please see:
CFP: European Art versus American Art (Prague, 15-16 Mar 13). In: ArtHist.net, Feb 6, 2013 (accessed May 29, 2022), <https://arthist.net/archive/4658>.