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Announcement
January 6, 2017

Call for submissions: The Contemporary Contemporary conference

Aarhus University
Raqs Media Collective, Figuration towards Corrections to the First Draft of History, 2014. Courtesy of the artist and Frith Street Gallery, London.

The research project The Contemporary Conditionat Aarhus University invites proposals for the conference The Contemporary Contemporary: Representations and Experiences of Contemporaneity in and through Contemporary Arts Practice, June 16 through 18, 2017, at ARoS Aarhus Art Museum. Confirmed keynote speakers include Ina Blom (Oslo), Raqs Media Collective (New Delhi), Knut Ebeling (Berlin), and Peter Osborne (London).

What constitutes the contemporary present? The contemporary present seems to be characterized by contemporaneity. However contemporaneity is not to be understood ahistorically as simply the state of belonging to the same time or period, or existing or occurring at the same time, but rather as the coming together of a multitude of different times and temporalities in the same historical present. This is the contemporary contemporary. It is formed by an intensified global interconnectedness of different times and experiences of time that challenge as well as consolidate some of the hierarchies that have been associated with modernity.

With networked informational technologies and ever more socialized media forms it is now becoming more and more evident that the plurality of times today are not only existing at the same time, in parallel to each other, but that they interconnect and are being brought to bear on the same present, a kind of planetary present and a globally generalized sharing of time, even though of course the possibility of taking part in this interconnection and sharing is highly unevenly distributed. This, among other things, means that we—and we now dare to employ the collective pronoun as indicating, if only in principle, all of us—seem to live in an expanded present in which several temporalities, histories, and times take part in what is perceived as present and as presence.

The purpose of the conference is to investigate and discuss this phenomenon and/or concept of contemporaneity and how it has come and still comes into being, and, not least, how it relates to and appears in contemporary art. How does it affect our experience(s) of time and contemporary formations of subjectivity? What are the consequences for concepts of history and for understandings of time itself? For art history? What is the role of media, and planetary-scale computation in the production of contemporaneity? How does it relate to current forms of capitalism? What are the implications for social imagination? Image-politics? Artistic practice? With the overall aim of analysing, articulating, and discussing contemporaneity and its relationship to contemporary art these are some of the issues we invite paper proposals and artistic contributions to address.

Proposals of papers and artistic contributions (such as screenings and performance-lectures) should be roughly 300 words (including a short bionote) and should be sent to [email protected].

Deadline for submission of abstracts is January 31, 2017. Notifications of acceptance or rejection will be sent by March 1, 2017.

Conference fee: the registration fee is 75 EUR for faculty members and 30 EUR for PhD students, postdoctoral scholars and independent scholars and artists.

The deadline for registration is April 1, 2017.

Contact: [email protected]

The Contemporary Condition research group consists of Jacob Lund, Geoff Cox, Verina Gfader, Anne Kølbæk Iversen and Camma Juel Jepsen. The conference is organised in collaboration with Lise Pennington, Chief Curator at ARoS Aarhus Art Museum.

 

The Contemporary Contemporary conference at ARoS Aarhus Art Museum presented by The Contemporary Condition research group at Aarhus University

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