Modernism Made Monumental

Athens, GA, USA, October 21 – 22, 2016
Deadline: April 30, 2016

The Association of Graduate Art Students (AGAS) at the University of Georgia, in partnership with the Georgia Museum of Art, invites emerging scholars to submit proposals for papers that contribute to a
discussion of monuments and modernism. The symposium will be held in conjunction with the exhibition Icon of Modernism: Representing the Brooklyn Bridge, 1883–1950, on view at the Georgia Museum of Art
September 17–December 11, 2016.

Our symposium will expand the scope of the exhibition by addressing the broader implications of symbolically saturated constructions throughout the history of visual and material culture. Conventional notions of
modernization emphasize innovation and progress and seem opposed to monuments’ commemoration of the past. Yet, monuments also mark inaugural events or cataclysmic changes, and the materials and
techniques employed in their making are often wholly original—at times, even scandalous. Contradictions between permanence and ephemerality, tradition and ingenuity, and public and personal can be examined in
iconic structures that complicate fixed definitions of both modernity and monumentality.

While we invite contributions that consider the American and European milieu that produced experimental artistic movements beginning in the late nineteenth century, papers that address occurrences of modernist
monumentality during earlier time periods or in non-Euro-American locations are equally welcome. Submissions that discuss specific works of art that feature the Brooklyn Bridge or themes that appear in Icon
of Modernism are also encouraged. Other relevant topics include but are not limited to:

•    technological innovation and feats of construction
•    aspirational architecture and models
•    restoration and reutilization of historic objects and artifacts
•    conceptions of audience in design practice
•    aesthetics of collective memory
•    world’s fairs and their remnants

Current graduate students and other emerging scholars should submit abstracts (maximum 300 words) and an up-to-date CV to uga.symposium@gmail.com by April 30, 2016. Applicants will be notified of the committee’s decisions by May 30, 2016.

Icon of Modernism, the exhibition’s accompanying catalogue, and educational programs are made possible by the W. Newton Morris Charitable Foundation and the Friends of the Georgia Museum of Art.

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