Speculative Realism, Accelerationism and Aesthetics

Speculative Realism, Accelerationism and Aesthetics

On Friday March 27th, join us for a day-long conference organized by Art History Department students Sydney Stutterheim, Matilde Guidelli-Guidi, Jonathan Patkowski, and Professor David Joselit which will examine the implications of accelerationism and speculative realism for artistic and curatorial practice, as well as the opportunities and limitations of non-anthropocentric aesthetico-critical strategies.

A video stream of the conference will available here from 10AM-6PM and @HumanitiesGC will be live-tweeting w/ #speculateaccelerate!

10:00 – 10:15: Introduction
10:30 – 12:30: Presentations by Liam Considine, Yates McKee, and Sam Sackeroff
12:30 – 1:30: Lunch break
1:30 – 2:30: Moderated Conversation with Miguel Abreu and Margaret Lee
2:30 – 3:30: Moderated Conversation with Kerstin Brätsch, John Miller, and Anicka Yi
3:30 – 4:00: Afternoon break
4:00 – 5:00: Keynote Lecture I: Anselm Franke
5:00 – 6:00: Keynote Lecture II: Jane Bennett

Cosponsored by the PhD Program in Art History; The James Gallery; Doctoral Students Council; and The Speculate/Accelerate Seminar in the Humanities.

 Visit the Center for Humanities website for full details.




April Rewald Lectures: Claire Bishop and Patricia Falguières

Rewald Lectures

Mark your calendars! Next month, the Art History Program will hold two Rewald Research in Progress talks. Tuesday, April 14 at 5:30 p.m. Professor Claire Bishop will present “Déjà vu: Contemporary Art and the Ghosts of Modernism.”

Two weeks later on Monday, April 27 at 6:00 p.m. Patricia Falguières, Professor at the School for Advanced Studies in the Social Sciences in Paris, will present “Politics for the White Cube: The Italian Way.”

For future reference, both events are listed in our calendar.

Please note that our Rewald lectures are only open to students and faculty in the Art History Program, due to space constraints.



Michelle Fisher Co-Authors Design and Violence

Design and Violence

Michelle Fisher, PhD Candidate and Curatorial Assistant in the Architecture + Design department at the Museum of Modern Art, has co-authored of an upcoming book exploring the relationship between design and crime!

Published to accompany an online experiment launched by The Museum of Modern Art in October 2013, Design and Violence is an exploration of the relationship between the two that sheds light on the complex impact of design on the built environment and on everyday life, as well as on the forms of violence in contemporary society. The book brings together controversial, provocative and compelling design projects with leading voices from a variety of fields.


Michelle Fisher also recently opened This Is for Everyone: Design Experiments for the Common Good with Paola Antonelli, Senior Curator, which will be on display in MoMA’s architecture and design galleries until January 2016.

Mellon-Funded “New Initiatives in Curatorial Training” Program Renewed

Curatorial Training

We’re thrilled to announce that the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation has generously renewed its support of our “New Initiatives in Curatorial Training” program for the next four years!

Since Fall 2012, the program has allowed the Department to offer intensive curatorial seminars at leading New York museums. These include one on European textiles at the Metropolitan Museum of Art co-taught by Professor Amanda Wunder and Melinda Watt, Associate Curator for European textiles, and another examining European painting of the 1930s at the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), co-taught by Professor Romy Golan and Danielle Johnson, Curatorial Assistant in the Department of Painting and Sculpture.

The Mellon Foundation has also made possible year-long paid internships and fellowships at the Metropolitan Museum, MoMA, Newark Museum, and Dia Art Foundation that immerse students in curatorial practice and museum collections.

Our sincere thanks to the Mellon Foundation for continuing to support this important curatorial training initiative!



Art History Program on YouTube

The Art History PhD Program YouTube channel is up and running, and can be accessed from the upper-right corner of the Commons home page.

The first feature is Beyond Connoisseurship: Rethinking Prints from the Belle Épreuve (1875) to the Present, a conference organized last semester by Britany Salsbury and Allison Rudnick. Speakers included Bridget Alsdorf, Assistant Professor, Department of Art History and Archaeology, Princeton University and Jay A. Clarke, Manton Curator of Prints, Drawings, and Photographs, Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute (full conference details here).

In the weeks to come, we’ll be uploading more events, including last spring’s Exhibit A: Authorship on Display conference.

New Feature: Alumnae/i Profiles

Alumnae/i Profiles

We’re happy to announce the addition of a new feature to the Art History Commons website: a list of alumnae/i profiles featuring links to relevant academic and museum positions. Accessible via the main menu,  the page provides current and prospective students insight into the exciting careers that many of our alumnae/i have pursued. More profiles will be added in the coming weeks, so be sure to check for updates!



Today: Alise Tifentale “Specters of Communism” Gallery Tour

Alise Tifentale

Next Tuesday March 3rd at 6:30 pm, join Alise Tifentale, PhD Student in Art History, in the James Gallery for a tour tracing the ‘specter’ of Communism in the works on view, while also engaging in a broader discussion of the complex legacy of Karl Marx’s original observations about nineteenth-century Manchester.

More information on the James Gallery’s current Specters of Communism: Contemporary Russian Art exhibition can be found here. Reviews of the exhibition have appeared in Art in America, Hyperallergic, and The Calvert Journal.

CFP Deadline Extended: Shift Graduate Journal of Visual and Material Culture, Issue 8

Shift Graduate Journal

Co-edited by Art History PhD Students Andrianna Campbell and Jonathan Patkowski, Shift: Graduate Journal of Visual and Material Culture is currently soliciting articles and book/exhibition reviews for its upcoming 8th issue, which will be dedicated to questions of space, alterity and memory. The deadline for submissions has been extended to March 31st, 2015. Full CFP details below!

Space, Alterity, Memory
In recent years, public protest movements such as Occupy and #BlackLivesMatter have demonstrated the ways in which political power, economic and ethnic identity, and cultural memory are closely linked to questions of space. The assembly of non-hierarchical oppositional communities in Zuccotti Park, the mass demonstrations across American cities countering police-enforced racial segregation, and the construction of precarious counter-monuments to the victims of state violence (such as the recently-destroyed memorial for Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo.) exemplify how efforts to resist and commemorate are entangled with the unequally distributed access to public space in post-Civil Rights America.

Analogous issues are at the fore throughout the Americas, Europe, Asia, the Middle East, and Africa where new forms of local belonging and transnational immigration have revealed systematic patterns of racism and exclusion. Increasingly, public displays of xenophobia rely on essentialist notions of place and identity, which threaten fragile multicultural agreements. What happened to the utopic future of progressive cultural inclusiveness envisioned in our popular culture? Is this turn part of a cyclical longer history? What are the markers of state power, familial legacies, capital, fear and an empowered populace that allow for resistance and how do they manifest in the public arena whether virtual or real?

This special issue of Shift takes a broad view of these recent developments by exploring the interrelationships of space, alterity/identity and memory in visual and material culture. We accept papers, as well as exhibition and book reviews from a range of visually-oriented disciplines that explore such issues as:
The status of the public monument or assembly
Ephemeral, archival and other non-monumental forms of public memorialization
The fate of established art historical categories such as site-specificity or monumentality
The figure of the migrant in visual culture/the relationship between art, migration and urban space
The contestation and occupation of public and private space
The architectural construction of race
The city versus the nation as art historical or museological framework

Submission Deadline
This journal is an online publication. All submissions should be sent by email to editors@shiftjournal.org by 01 March 2015. The journal launch will take place 01 October 2015.

Submission and Style Guidelines
Please read the following points carefully before submitting to Shift. Submissions that do not follow these regulations will not be considered for publication.
Authors must be registered as graduate students at the time they submit their work.
All papers and reviews must conform to the style guidelines as outlined in The Chicago Manual of Style, 15th or newer edition.
Images should be placed in-text throughout the document, not located together at the end. All images and figures should be properly captioned according to The Chicago Manual of Style, 15th or newer edition. Authors are responsible for securing rights to all images and figures used within their paper. Authors must produce evidence that these rights have been obtained before an image or figure will be published.
In order to ensure blind readings from the Editorial Committee, authors must remove any identifying information from the content of the submission.
Please submit a separate document with the author’s name, title of paper/review, institutional affiliation and email address.

Shift is currently hosted at The Graduate Center, CUNY

Devin Fore Lecture

Devin Fore

Our thanks to everyone who has attended this month’s Visiting Lecturer Series! The series concludes this evening at 5pm with a talk by Devin Fore entitled “Before Documentary: Ornament and Knowledge in Soviet Factography.”

As was the case with previous talks, Fore’s lecture will only be open to students and faculty in the Art History Program, due to space constraints.