November 19, 2019

Contemporaneity Vol. 8: "Yesterday's Contemporaneity: Finding Temporality in the Past"

University of Pittsburgh

Top: Rosabel Rosalind Kurth-Sofer, Exodus I, 2018. Pen and ink on paper. 9 x 11 inches. Courtesy the artist. Bottom: The Beresford Monument, ca. 1465–1550. Alabaster. Church of St Edmund King and Martyr, Fenny Bentley, Derbyshire. Photo courtesy Aimee Caya. Left: Augustus Saint-Gaudens, Abraham Lincoln: The Man (Standing Lincoln), 1884–87. Reduced 1910; cast 1911. Bronze. 102.9 x 41.9 x 76.8 cm. Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 2012.14a,b.

Contemporaneity: Historical Presence in Visual Culture is proud to announce the publication of its eight edition, titled "Yesterday's Contemporaneity: Finding Temporality in the Past." This edition contains articles, symposium papers, conversations, and book and exhibition reviews that examine the historical and historiographic role of contemporaneity across a breadth of contexts.

Conor Moynihan explores artist Medhi-Georges Lahlou’s artistic practice against the legacies of Orientalism in the article “Timelessness and Precarity in Orientalist Temporality: Mehdi-Georges Lahlou’s Aesthetics of Disorientation.”

Aimee Caya reflects on the affective power of anonymity in a late medieval funerary monument in her symposium paper “‘So shall yoe bee:’ Encountering the Shrouded Effigies of Thomas Beresford and Agnes Hassall at Fenny Bentley. ”

Ramey Mize considers a set of casts taken of Abraham Lincoln’s face and hands as relics in light of the president’s legacy in her symposium paper “Sacred Substantiations: Lincoln Casts and Statuary in the American Imagination.”

Rae Di Cicco and Rosabel Rosalind Kurth-Sofer discuss Kurth-Sofer’s artistic practice and the role that art has played in the history of anti-Semitism in their conversation “The Canaries of Democrary: Imagining the Wandering Jew with Artist Rosabel Rosalind Kurth-Sofer,” with an introduction by Thomas M. Messersmith.

Marina Tyquiengco and Dr. Monika Siebert discuss Americans, an exhibition at the National Museum of the American Indian in DC, alongside Siebert’s 2015 book titled Indians Playing Indian? North American Indigenous Art in the Age of Multiculturalism in a conversation titled “Are Indians in America’s DNA?”

Adriana Miramontes Olivas and Gabriel Garcilazo converse about Garcilazo’s work and the history of Mexico in a conversation titled “From Axayácatl to El Chapo: Rethinking Migration and Mexico’s War on Drugs in Gabriel Garcilazo’s Dystopic Magical Codex.

This edition also includes book and exhibition reviews by: Andrea Kibler Maxwell, Christopher J. Nygren, Sarah Reiff Conell, and Carolyn Wargula.

Future issue: Vol. 9. "Moving Across/ Through Cultures."
In recent years, art historians and contemporary artists have cast a critical eye on issues of mobility, exchange, and encounter between people and things across time and place. Questioning how people, objects, ideas, and aesthetics move through the world is crucial for understanding how art and material cultures form, define, and redefine identities and—often uneven—social relationships. Recent projects that address these issues range from contemporary art practices, such as Dig Where Your Stand in the 57th Carnegie International (Koyo Kouoh in collaboration with University of Pittsburgh graduate students) to historiographic interventions, symposia, and publications like Objects in Motion: Art & Material Culture Across Colonial North America (Wendy Bellion and Mónica Domínguez Torres). In its ninth edition Contemporaneity will extend these discourses and address how objects, aesthetics, people, and ideas move across cultures and boundaries into places deemed new, foreign, strange, or remote. It will also address the aftermath of such movement. We will ask how objects and artistic practices facilitate, encounter, and negotiate multiple identities and relationships, acting on both their culture of origin and their new sites of reception simultaneously. How does the act of movement produce contact zones between two or more cultures? How do art and objects provide and/or expose different modes of encounter between people, places, and cultures?

About the journal
Contemporaneity is an open access and peer-reviewed journal that publishes scholarly and artistic explorations of the diverse ways in which the complexities of being in time are expressed. It is based in the department of the History of Art & Architecture at the University of Pittsburgh, and emerges from its innovative constellations program. We publish question-driven research that resonates across disciplines, interrogating diverse visual material from across time using multiple methods.

To make a submission, visit, and click “Make a Submission” to get started. Proposals for articles, book and exhibition reviews, interviews, or other scholarly contributions will all be considered, and we recognize that these submissions may take many forms.

Proposals and questions can be directed to the editors at contemporaneityjournal [​at​]

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