Conference CFP: Archives for the Future

ARCHIVES FOR THE FUTURE: An Art and Visual Culture Conference

Saturday 29 March 2014, University of Westminster (309 Regent Street, London, W1B 2UW).

The conference is organised by Mnemoscape (Elisa Adami and Alessandra Ferrini) with the support of the University of Westminster, the Institute for Modern and Contemporary Culture and The International Association for Visual Culture.

Archives are becoming increasingly fetishized and (an)aestheticized in contemporary art practice and academic discourse. This conference comes out of a shared sense of frustration at this. In response, it intends to explore the present and futuristic potential embedded in the archive, moving away from practices of postmodernist deconstructionism and historical revisionism.

Archives have generally been considered as conservative institutions aimed at preserving the past in the present – and so perpetuating the traditional structures of power. In contrast, we are interested in bringing to light the generative and creative side of the archive, what Derrida has defined as its ‘institutive’ power. How can archives be used to generate the ‘new’ and to convey possible alternatives to the present status quo? How can we turn archives from historical records into instruments of future planning and agencies of radical thinking? Is it possible to build an archive which works as an open space of imagination and a means of projection into the future? Is it possible to archive the future to come and, at the same time, to remain open to the unpredictable and the unknown?

We invite submissions that are concerned with reinstating the archive as site of political confrontation, of action and intervention in the present, as well as as site of re-projection and re-imagination for the future. We are particularly interested in creating a dialogue between theory and practice and as such we welcome contributions from artists, thinkers and curators alike

For further information please email or click here.

Deadline for abstract submissions: 1 December 2013.