Karen Barzman awarded NEH fellowship at Newberry Library

Congratulations to Associate Professor Karen Barzman, who has been awarded a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Humanities to conduct research in the Newberry Library in Chicago during Spring 2013. Barzman is completing a book, titled The Limits of Identity: Venice, Dalmatia, and the Representation of Difference, on the constitution of corporate identity in Venice during the late 15th through early 18th centuries. Drawing on a range of primary sources and cultural production, it focuses on those aspects of Venezianità (“Venetian-ness”) emerging in relation to the maritime republic’s neighbors in the Balkans.

Next VizCult: Kevin Hatch, Binghamton University

“Platform and Place at Documenta 11”

Wednesday, March 7, 5:15 pm

FA 218

A key moment in the history of postwar mediation—the so-called “digital turn” in new media art— can be illuminated through an examination of one of its touchstones, the eleventh Documenta exhibition organized by Okwui Enwezor and held in Kassel, Germany, in 2002. That Documenta was characterized by its innovative “platforms,” a set of overlapping art exhibitions, workshops and symposia that took place over eighteen months in five locations on four different continents. While the exhibition addressed questions of exclusivity and inequality in the postcolonial present, I argue that it also disclosed unresolved anxieties about the role that a specifically digital mediation was increasingly coming to play in addressing those questions. In short, even as the far-flung platforms set geopolitical realities squarely in the foreground, the question of “place” haunted the exhibition, from the spectral nature of its presumed spectator (some 600 hours of video were on offer, far too many for a single visitor to consume) to the fundamentally altered relationship between viewer and work that online publication and presentation were on the cusp of engendering.

Kevin Hatch is Assistant Professor of Art History at Binghamton University.

Attention, undergraduates: present a paper at Crossing the Boundaries XIV!


Undergraduate Art History Panel

Crossing the Boundaries XIV

Annual Interdisciplinary Graduate Student Academic Conference

The Art History Graduate Student Association invites undergraduate students from all disciplines to submit an abstract for a paper to be presented at an undergraduate panel on April 13, 2012 in conjunction with the Art History Department’s annual graduate conference, Crossing the Boundaries. The conference committee encourages papers from a wide range of topics that explore the history and development of visual culture and the built environment. Art History faculty members may also nominate individual undergraduate students who have produced exceptional work within current or past Art History courses.

The panel is meant to provide a forum for undergraduates to present advanced academic work within their major and gain experience presenting in a professional conference setting.

If interested, please submit a 250-500 word abstract to aszyman1@binghamton.edu by March 10, 2012.

CFP: International Journal of Islamic Architecture, “Streets of Protest: The Politics of Public Space”

The International Journal of Islamic Architecture(IJIA) is seeking papers for a special issue titled “Streets of Protest: The Politics of Public Space.” Edited by Ipek Tureli (McGill University) and “house”-edited by Kivanc Kilinc (PhD in Art History, Binghamton University, 2010) the issue will explore the diverse ways individuals and groups contest and remake public space is of interest to the field of architecture, especially at this moment of economic recession. From “guerrilla,” “tactical,” to “DIY” urbanisms, all celebrate the agency of the individual or small groups to make modest changes by claiming public spaces without the need for extensive investments or infrastructure. Such calls are conveniently in line with the emphasis on the neo-liberal subject’s individual agency and capability. What happens when ordinary people demand not so modest but copious and radical changes?

Proposal Submission deadline: 15 March 2012


Julia Walker speaks at Trinity University

Assistant Professor Julia Walker will give a talk titled “O’Neil Ford and the Architecture of Trinity University: A Sentimental Journey” on Saturday, February 18, as part of a symposium convened to discuss the future of the Trinity campus. Ford worked on Trinity’s so-called “Skyline Campus” from the 1940s through the 1970s and has long been considered one of the most important modernist architects of the region. In her lecture, Walker (who received her BA in English and Art History at Trinity) will argue that Ford’s contribution to the campus amounts to a complete visualization of the liberal arts curriculum in architectural form. More information at http://web.trinity.edu/x17426.xml.

Laine Little wins NCHA travel grant

Congratulations to doctoral student Laine Little, who is one of fourteen graduate students from Art History programs across the country to receive a travel grant from the National Committee for the History of Art (NCHA). Laine will attend the thirty-third congress of the International Committee of the History of Art (Comité International d’Histoire de l’Art, or CIHA), taking place July 15–20, 2012, in Nuremberg, Germany.

More information at http://www.collegeart.org/news/2012/02/08/ciha-travel-grants-for-graduate-students-in-art-history/

Chris Balsiger in conversation with Jonathan Katz

Alice Neel, "Frank O'Hara," 1960. Oil on canvas, National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution, Washington D.C.

Follow the link to to read doctoral student Chris Balsiger’s recent interview with Jonathan Katz, director of the doctoral program in visual studies at the State University of New York at Buffalo. The conversation covers (among many other topics) music, what it means to be an “activist historian,” and the exhibition “Hide/Seek: Difference and Desire in American Portraiture,” co-curated by Katz and David C. Ward and currently on view at the Brooklyn Museum after its much-discussed debut at the National Portrait Gallery.


Harpur Cinema presents spring schedule of films

Harpur Cinema’s spring schedule features a mix of recent releases from American and international cinema. All screenings take place at 7:30 p.m. Fridays and Sundays in LH-6. Single ticket: $4. For more information (including synopses), visit http://www2.binghamton.edu/inside/index.php/inside/story/harpur-cinema-offers-spring-schedule-of-films

  • Feb. 24 and 26: “The Princess of Montpensier” (France-2010), Bernard Tavernier, 139 min.
  • March 2 and 4: “Animal Kingdom” (Australia-2010), David Michôd, 113 min.
  • March 9 and 11: “Certified Copy” (France-Italy-Belgium, 2010), Abbas Kiarostami, 106 min.
  • March 16 and 18: “Martha, Marcy, May, Marlene” (United States, 2011), Sean Durkin, 102 min.
  • March 23 and 25: “A Screaming Man” (Chad-France-Belgium, 2010), Mahamat-Saleh Haroun, 92 min.
  • April 13 and 15: “Meek’s Cut-off” (United States, 2010) Kelly Reichardt, 104 min.
  • April 20 and 22: “Wild Grass” (France, 2009) Alain Resnais, 104 min.
  • April 27 and 29: “Vengeance” (Hong Kong-France, 2009), Johnny To, 108 min.

Peter de Francia, 1921-2012

Peter de Francia: The Bombing of Sakiet, 1959. Photograph: James Hyman Gallery

It is with sadness that John Tagg notes the recent death of his inspiring mentor, the painter, writer and educator, Peter de Francia (1921-2012), former Principal of the School of Art at the University of London Goldsmiths’ College and later Professor of Painting at the Royal College of Art in London. It was de Francia above all who nurtured Tagg’s early interest in the Marxist art historian Max Raphael, encouraged his reading of Benjamin and Barthes, and introduced him to the photographs of Eugène Atget, through his major work on Fernand Léger. Above all, in contrast to the prevailing manners and mores of the English art world, de Francia embodied a very French idea of the committed intellectual, conveying a sense of seriousness and a strong whiff of combative politics that seemed to come straight from a turbulent Paris. An extensive tribute to de Francia was published in the Guardian at http://www.guardian.co.uk/artanddesign/2012/jan/23/peter-de-francia

Next VizCult: Kathleen Sterling, Binghamton University

Cultural Landscapes of the Late Ice Age in Europe
Wednesday, February 15, 5:15 p.m.
FA 218

Although landscape archaeologies that give attention to the cultural importance of place have become increasingly common in recent years, these approaches have failed to make inroads into Pleistocene Europe hunter-gatherer archaeology.  This is due to focusing on economics and efficiency in early modern human behavior.  With case studies drawn from decorated cave sites, survey, and open-air excavation, we can see that late Ice Age hunter-gatherers left clues to the importance of certain places in the landscape and used material culture as a marker of meaning and identities.

Kathleen Sterling is Assistant Professor of Anthropology at Binghamton University.