• 17 June to 12 July 2019

Deadline for Submission: 12pm (GMT) Friday 12th July 2019

The Paul Mellon Centre, Henry Moore Foundation and Historic Artists’ Homes and Studios, a programme of the National Trust for Historic Preservation (US) are seeking proposals to present at a colleagues’ conference focused on research and scholarship centered around artists’ preserved homes and studios in the United States and United Kingdom.

Proposals are welcome from colleagues in museum, historic site and university communities working with or at these types of sites. Submission may come from curatorial, conservation, administrative, interpretative staff working at these museums, or from scholars researching, publishing on these topics. Submissions are also encouraged from independent curators and researchers in the field. 

This is a collaborative programme sponsored by the Paul Mellon Centre, Henry Moore Foundation and the Historic Artists’ Homes and Studios Program with underwriting support from the Terra Foundation for American Art.

Call for Papers to Present: Monday 30th September (Paul Mellon Centre, London) – Tuesday 1st October 2019 (Henry Moore Foundation, Perry Green, UK).

Travel and Accommodation Reimbursement

For selected speakers from the UK some travel and accommodation expense monies will be available (provided by the Paul Mellon Centre).

For selected speakers from the US 1,400 USD will be offered to offset travel and lodging expenses (provided by the Terra Foundation for American Art).

All travel and accommodations arrangements to and from the conference are the responsibility of the speaker. Conference venue transport, selective meals, and attendance at all conference functions is provided.

Submission Guidelines

Format: 

  • Submitted in a Word document attachment
  • Personal contact, professional affiliation and e-mail address must be provided
  • 50-word maximum title of your proposed talk
  • 250-word maximum abstract relating to one of the conference themes (see below)
  • Reference to the theme for which you wish to be considered
  • The abstract must relate to a 15-minute illustrated talk format

Submissions: Thomas Knowles, Events Manager: tknowles@paul-mellon-centre.ac.uk (a confirmation e-mail will be sent upon receipt). 

Notification of Acceptance: 31st July 2019. Deadline for Submission: 12pm (GMT) Friday 12th July 2019.

Conference Content and Call of Papers

Themes focused on research and interpretation of British and American art though the exploration of preserved artist’s homes and studios. Thematic approach has been defined as exploring the current and future “landscape” of these types of sites through three distinctive lenses:  

Theme 1: The Research Landscape – methods and methodologies

  1. How do you engage with the unique resources present at preserved artists’ homes and studios sites to enrich your work and/or teaching on a specific artist, specific eras of artistic production, or museology?
  2. How does the exploration and rigorous academic study of these preserved artists’ sites differ from traditional art historical research methods?
  3. What can be done to advance understanding of the global connections between these artists and the sites preserved as their legacies?

Theme 2: The Artistic Landscape – the place of the artists’ studio home in art history

This theme focuses intensely on how preserved artists’ homes and studios use their site and collections to advance understanding of art, art history, and the artist(s) associated with their sites.

Submissions to present on this theme will selected as they relate to the following questions:

  1. How does the material culture at an artist’s site offer unique ways interpret and present the history of an artist(s), their work, and their era of artistic production, and how does the concept of artist's studio as 'Gesamtkunstwerk' figure into that interpretation?
  2. What are the strategies and techniques do you employ at your site that contribute to the teaching of the art history of the past through engagement with the art/art history of the present moment? (This might include exhibitions or programming utilising the perspective of living artists, youth or adult programming employing tactile learning in innovative ways, introducing new technology platforms as a vehicle for teaching art history at a site).
  3. How do newly emerging art historical narratives reveal themselves through current programming, scholarship and exhibitions related to a given site? (Each preserved artists’ home and studio sites offers the possibility for unique, expanded narratives: LGBTQ, immigrant experience, physical challenges, non-mainstream artistic training, artistic collaboration, female voice, as well as ideas around patronage/commercial representation.)

Theme 3: The Physical Landscape – the issue of “authenticity”

This theme explores ideas relating to “authenticity” in the presentation of these sites to the public.   

Presentations around this theme will selected as they relate to the following questions:

  1. What determines an authentic experience at these sites? Specifically, as it relates to art and art historical narratives?
  2. What are the challenges presented in balancing the desire to present original materials to audience and the responsibility to ensure long-term preservation/conservation of these artifacts?
  3. Submissions to present on this theme may be focused on issues relating to the appropriate use of original material versus technology, facsimiles or other tools. Philosophical approaches to these questions, as well as case studies of employed tactics may be submitted.

This conference is made possible, in part, through the support of the Terra Foundation for American Art.

Banner image: Daniel Chester French's casting room at Chesterwood, Photograph: Jason Baker, Courtesy Chesterwood Historic Site, Stockbridge, MA