Calls for Papers/May 19, 2022

Digital Art History - Methods, Practices, Epistemologies IV

Digital Art History - Methods, Practices, Epistemologies IV lead image

Digital Art History - Methods, Practices, Epistemologies IV, Zagreb, October 3–4, 2022

The fourth edition of the conference Digital Art History – Methods, Practices, Epistemologies will bring together established and early career scholars, independent researchers, and professionals involved with the transdisciplinary research in Digital Humanities, focusing on Digital Art History, Digital Visual Studies, Digital History of Architecture, and Critical Digital Cultural Heritage.

The annual series of conferences Digital Art History – Methods, Practices, Epistemologies was conceived in 2018 with a mission to promote and discuss the “digital turn” in humanities, and to become an inclusive and open platform for exchange, networking and learning about ongoing research, projects and diverse type of practices in the field of Digital Art History / Digital Humanities. Since then, the scope and physiognomy of this transdisciplinary field itself has grown larger, more diverse and complex. Therefore, this years’ conference will try to provide a compelling theoretical angle and entice more focused discussions, particularly welcoming those that aim at theoretical elaborations and methodological contributions to the study of complexity in art historical phenomena and processes.

The field of cultural production can be regarded as a complex system, composed of human and non-human agents, whose defining feature is that of emergence (meaning that an entity possesses properties not present in any of its parts). The agents that make up the cultural field – whether it be artists, artworks, institutions, ideas or market mechanisms and socio-political frameworks – are in constant interaction: they continuously adapt to each other, develop different and differing strategies and models of functioning, keeping the field permeable to the entry of new agents who, in turn, contribute to the change of the entire system. On the practical level of methods and analyses, these agents and their interactions are commonly situated within a spatial, temporal or spatio-temporal epistemic and analytical grid.

On the level of spatial relations, the described complexity of the cultural/artistic field can be best observed on the micro-level, but is further complicated when we consider it on a global scale, through the consequences of far-reaching political events, the operation of transnational agents or the circulation of artists, ideas, and objects. On the other hand, the functioning of the art field as a complex system brings into question the idea of linear / chronological flows of dominant cultural narratives, since – in mathematical terms – the described interactions are already non-linear.

Along with presentations that deal with global cultural exchange / circulation, and plural spatio-temporal regimes, we are especially interested in how these complexities are (or can be) addressed in digital research projects, i.e. how these complex processes are framed in relation to the limitations of digital tools, visualization techniques and data sources.

However, due to continual lack of scholarly meeting points focused on Digital Art History, we are open to all other contributions presenting ongoing or recently completed research projects, unpublished discussions concerning the wider scope of methodological, theoretical, and epistemological issues of Digital Art History / Digital Humanities, as well as papers focusing on the technological problems and solutions of interest to a wider research community.

The participation in the conference is free and open to everyone, with no registration fees. Selected papers will be invited to prepare a submission for an edited, peer-reviewed volume.

The conference and the publication are organized within the research project J7-2606 “Models and Practices of Global Cultural Exchange and Non-Aligned Movement. Research in the Spatio-Temporal Cultural Dynamics,” which is conducted by the University of Ljubljana, Academy of Fine Arts and Design, and the Institute of Art History in Zagreb. The project is funded by the Slovenian Research Agency (ARRS) and the Croatian Science Foundation (HRZZ).