LET’S GET CRITICAL: RECEPTION IN ART HISTORY AND ART CRITICISM
Conference in Copenhagen February 27-28 2009
The relationship between art critical and art historical praxis is a contested
area. Some maintain that the two fields are separate and delimited disciplines.
The starting point for this conference is that art criticism and art history are
closely related. However, how and when art criticism becomes part of art history
is an ongoing question.
Let’s get critical will discuss what possible positions art criticism can take
up in academia and in the field of contemporary art – a field marked by the
demands of the experience economy of global capitalism and a cultural critique
which attempts to grasp the democratic challenges posed by the new agendas of
globalization and the flow of communication, migration and multiculturalism.
International scholars and art critics – James Elkins, Ruth Noack, Noemi Smolik,
Sarat Maharaj, Ahu Antmen, Lars Bang Larsen, T. J. Demos, Lotte Phillipsen and
Malene Vest Hansen – will investigate critical crossings between the two
domains: art criticism and art history and address the following topics:
Critical reception in the global art market: displacement of the critic?
>From what positions are art critical practices possible when the culture
industry and the global art market become still more dominant? What strategies
in institutional critique in art, criticism and art history have been viable
since the 1960s?
Challenging hegemonic canons
How does art criticism challenge hegemonic canons of art and its history? This
section will discuss instances of how a critical reception of contemporary art
can inform the inscription and rewriting of art history.
Whose art and history?
The ‘good old’ modern Western concept of art seems to function smoothly at a
global level – but is the ethnocentric paradigm challenged when implemented in
new social and cultural settings? Which forms of cultural translations are
operating here, and how?
Art criticism: wanted!
Where is art criticism heading? When contemporary art projects challenge new
forms, strategies and spaces, from what platforms can art criticism exist? Art
criticism has been pronounced dead, with no importance apart from fuelling the
art market, or with no viable aesthetic theory to grasp new art manifestations.
What possible critical positions can art criticism take today?
Friday February 27: The Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts
Saturday February 28: University of Copenhagen
Info and registration – deadline February 18:
THE 4TH INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE OF THE NOVO NORDISK FOUNDATION ART HISTORY