Art, Religion, Identity: Interdisciplinary Symposium 23-24 September
Art, Religion, Identity:
An interdisciplinary symposium
The University of Glasgow
Graduate School of Arts and Humanities
23-24 September 2008
Professor Melissa Raphael-Levine (University of Gloucestershire)
Professor Shulamit Reinharz (Brandeis University)
Dr. Laura Levitt (Temple University)
Call for Papers
In conjunction with an art exhibition at Glasgow University Chapel celebrating the 100th anniversary of the birth of Glasgow Jewish artist Hannah Frank, the Graduate School of Arts and Humanities and the Department of Theology and Religious Studies at the University of Glasgow will host a two-day symposium on art, religion, and identity. Questions about the role of identity in art abound, and these questions only increase when the artist is associated with a particular social group, be it religious, gendered, or ethnic, through their own self-presentation or the efforts of outside scholars or critics. To what extent does association with a social group influence the production of art? To what extent does an awareness of such associations influence the viewer’s experience of art?
We invite papers on any topic relating to the conference theme, with a focus on the 19th and 20th centuries, although we are open to proposals dealing with other periods. We welcome papers from any discipline, including but not limited to theology, art history, museum and archive studies, cultural studies, history, psychology, sociology, anthropology and literature.
Abstracts of 150-300 words, for papers not exceeding 20 minutes in length, or proposals for posters (A1 size) should be addressed to Julie Clague and Alana Vincent at art dot religion dot identity at googlemail dot com, no later than 20 July.
Topics may include, but are not limited to:
- Art as (auto)biography
- Borrowing and appropriation of imagery
- Contested (religious) identities
- Hermeneutics, textuality, and ‘reading’ images
- Intersections between mythology and religion in visual culture
- Imagination and the fantastic
- Material memory and culture making
- Theological and/or religious aesthetics
- Tensions, transgressions, heresies, and idolatries
- Religious uses of art: devotion, illustration, midrash, protest
- Artistic uses of religion: themes, symbolism, tradition, power
- Visual markers of religious identity
- Gender in relation to any of the above
A reception will be held in the Scottish Parliament on the evening of 23 September in honour of Hannah Frank and to launch a new book, "Hannah Frank, Footsteps on the Sands of Time: a 100th Birthday Celebration Gallimaufry" edited by Fiona Frank and Judith Coyle and published by the Scottish Jewish Archives Centre in association with Kennedy and Boyd.
Hannah Frank (b. 1908) studied at the University of Glasgow and the Glasgow School of Art. She produced her trademark black and white drawings from the age of 17 in 1925, and between 1927 and 1932 the GUM, the Glasgow University Magazine, rarely came out without a drawing by 'Al Aaraaf', her chosen pen name.
Hannah's haunting black and white drawings are resonant of the Art Nouveau period and with a hint of Aubrey Beardsley and Jessie King. She took up sculpture in the 1950s, studying with Benno Schotz; and her drawings and sculpture were exhibited in the Royal Glasgow Institute, the Royal Academy, and the Royal Scottish Academy, throughout her artistic career.
Further information will be made available on our website.
This event is supported by the Ben Uri Gallery: The London Jewish Museum of Art.
Please circulate widely.