Cosponsor(s): Center for Digital Humanities ∙ Department of African American Studies ∙ Department of Anthropology ∙ Department of Art & Archaeology ∙ Department of German ∙ Humanities Council ∙ Princeton University Art Museum ∙ Center for Collaborative History ∙ Princeton University Graduate School ∙ GradFUTURES
The symposium centers on the theme of changes at a time of global crises. More specifically, it calls on participants to consider the effects of COVID-19 on scholarship in the humanities. Contributors to the symposium investigate how people and institutions must adapt to changing global circumstances, not only in the economic and political sphere, but in art, culture, and society.
The organizers of the symposium set out to inquire and analyze the ways that the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic resulted in a dividing line between what we call a “pre-” and “post-” moment. This unprecedented transformation calls for a re-evaluation of established methods, and demands scholars to forge new paths and strategies toward research, theory, and critical engagement of art history and the humanities. As art historians, we used to assume that looking at an object must take place in real space and time, within the three-dimensional spaces of our world. Today, such encounters are more ambivalent, as they are being increasingly facilitated within virtual or augmented settings, affecting the way we look at and think about objects. We have to ask, how can art history incorporate and engage with these new ways of “looking,” both sensorial and conceptual? To address this question, it is imperative that we reconsider access to objects, archives, and sites. This, in turn, leads us to grapple with theoretical frameworks and new realities and conditions, from political reckonings to racial justice to ever more marked financial disparities.
The twelfth iteration of the Art & Archaeology Princeton Graduate Symposium will showcase reflections by graduate students and guest speakers on the various transformations that took place in the past few years. We ask, in what ways have conventional art historical narratives and methodologies been disrupted or destabilized? How has our discipline transformed or adapted to recent events? How have arts education and pedagogy been impacted by the shift toward the digital? And consequently, what is the future of art history? Reflections on and beyond these questions will unfold in a series of workshops and round table conversations, held over Zoom.