International Society for Intermedial Studies Conference, 5-7 November 2020

Please see conference website for more details

As a contribution to numerous theoretical and historical discussions on intermediality by ISIS and its members, this conference aims to study the intermedial work of art through its different stages, from conception to reception, as well as the related matters of analysis and preservation.

With the introduction of new technologies and new media in the past fifty years, two main tendencies have characterized artistic creation. The first tendency explores the exchanges between artistic domains through the interaction of sound, image, and gesture, which can lead to a true osmosis between different types of perception. The second tendency leans toward the abolition of the distinction of “art” and “non-art”, through the aestheticization and dramatization of other cultural fields (mass-media, sports, politics…).

Thus, forms of art express themselves through the use of intermedial and intersensory phenomena, through multidisciplinarity and indisciplinarity (that is, the transgression of limits or boundaries between artistic domains), but also between different types of perception or even different social environments. In the face of such a plurality of approaches outside of clearly defined disciplines and aesthetics, it is necessary to develop a transverse approach to the analysis of interdisciplinary artistic practice and theory, as well as to the critical discourse that accompanies them. It is also necessary to define or develop concepts corresponding to such situations: the decline of the object, crises of languages, syntheses of arts and synaesthesia, sensorial conjunctions, pluri-artistic environments, active participation, etc. In parallel to all that, it is also necessary to question the different ways of thinking about “non-art” and the significance of the aestheticization of culture.

New notions such as trans– and hyper-, media– or immedia manifest themselves in interme- dial work. The creation of the latter is also at the heart of digital computer creation, which has considerably enlarged original avant-garde conceptions, thus creating an epistemological change and the necessity of a deeper thinking—not theoretical, but anchored in the work itself, its existence, its ways of being in its different stages from conception, performance, and reception. On top of the transdisciplinary and interdisciplinary methods used, the “in- disciplinary” method, in the sense that Huys and Vernant give to the term (2012)—outside of conventional artistic genres, associated to the creators that voluntarily operate outside of any system—could also be an important path of investigation.

This leads to open questions which should be articulated with case studies in intermedial art. What methodological tools would be necessary to conceive, actually create, and com- prehend such a particular artistic production as an intermedial work? What would be the de- fining characteristics of such a work of art and its practical realisation? What are its creative dynamics, and how do they differ from non-intermedial art? What are the specific problems of its conception, realisation, and performance? How can its different modes of reception be evaluated? What would be the proper analysis tools or the relevant taxonomies? What terminologies would be best suited to investigate such works? Rather than the traditional artistic conceptual vocabulary—perhaps too medium- or disciplinary-specific—this confe- rence could be a moment to discuss terminologies of the common multi-artistic processes involved. Last, since archive centres, libraries, and museums encounter numerous difficul- ties when confronted with such works (at worst, intermedial works of art are badly archived, badly presented, and even excluded from archival collections), this conference aims to ex- plore remedies to those difficulties. 

This conference is organized around the following five themes:

Conception of the work and its theoretical foundations;

Realization and production (the work in the face of reality, archeology of media);

Performance or presentation of the intermedial work;

Reception of the work, by the public as well as by the theoreticians and analysts;

Archives of works, with their institutional, theoretical, and practical problems.

We welcome, though do not restrict, proposals for papers that pertain to those lines of enquiry. 

Keynote speakers

Jean-Marc Larrue (Université de Montréal, CRIalt – CRILCQ)

Nicola Cisternino (Composer and artist, Accademia delle Belle Arti Venezia) 

The time for presentations is limited to maximum 20 minutes, followed by a 10-minute debate.

Conference fee (which includes participation, conference buffet and banquet): 80 EUR, special fee (students, unemployed…): 50 EUR.

Please send an abstract (max. 250 words) and a short bio (max. 50 words) in a PDF attachment to: 

Proposals should include your name, university affiliation (if applicable), academic status, and the title of your paper. Papers should not exceed 20 minutes. The deadline for abstract submissions has been extended to 1st May 2020. Notification of acceptance will be communicated on 1st July 2020. 

New Call – Playing with/on Format / Jeux de formats at the Université de Bourgogne

Playing with/on Format

International conference

Université de Bourgogne (Dijon, France)

22-23 October 2020

Keynote speakers: Hermione Wiltshire (Royal College of Art, London)

David Zerbib (École Supérieure des Arts, Annecy; Haute École d’Art et de Design, Geneva)

The Centre de Recherche Texte/Image/Langage of Université de Bourgogne-Franche-Comté is organizing an international conference (French-English) on the duality of formats, both seen as a constraint and as an incentive to creativity. As David Zerbid proposes, format is to be understood as “convention and assemblage of material, technical and symbolic features that allow for a relatively stable identification and assessment of works of art and of other artefacts in a given cultural context”.[1] The notion of format ties in with such factors as dimension, scale, proportion and duration and it may equally be construed as norm and form, matrix or restrictive standardization. We will therefore examine the role and function of format in the creative arts: is it intrinsically tied to the work of art to the extent that any modification will alter the essence of the work itself? Engravers, illustrators, photographers, writers, poets, filmmakers, actors and dancers work within the boundaries delimited by certain formats. Those formats map out conventional, normative creative spaces that may be standardized but also modified. A format belongs to a system of signs and usages that imply categorization, but it may also be subverted by transgressive processes such as translation, displacement, adaptation, borrowing, hybridization, deconstruction and reinvention.

Format influences the creation and the reception of a work of art since it may be chosen in advance—as part of the terms of a commission, the rules of genre or the physical features of a particular place—and it may also occur as the work is being made—when printed for instance—or when it is exhibited. When understood as social or artistic convention, it combines with technical, practical, cultural and aesthetic factors and then forms part of a chain of constraints in a productive process that includes a variety of agents, tools and materials. This is instantiated by printing and photography as practices in which format is shaped by the use of technical apparatus, operating modes and artistic conventions. Yet if the arts seem to foreground creativity and originality, why should they require normative formats as in the fields of industry, science and communication?

We welcome papers that examine the following topics:

– Defining the features and the history of the factors—technical, social, mediological, cultural and aesthetic—motivating the choice of format, keeping in mind their varying cultural and historical embedding, as underlined by Olivier Quintyn.[2]

– The dialogic relationship between the format and the genre of a given work, in terms of convergence or discrepancy.

– The relation between the size of a printed, exhibited or performed piece and the space where it is enacted.

– The nature of enlarging and reducing processes and their effect on the visibility of the work and on its ontological relation to the real (as in the shift from a sketch on a small notebook to the canvas, the configuration induced by modeling, the pixilation produced by enlargement). How does a work come to existence, persist and evolve in different formats? What is the role of fragments (as in the case of sampling)?

– The rhythm, temporalities and spatial configurations induced by the variations and stability of format within a series of works.

– The artificiality or the potency of format as vehicle of ideology.

– Attempts to abolish format: is it possible to create art without format?

– The role of format in the reception and in the circulation of the work of art (in relation to exhibition procedures for instance).

– The artist’s role and legal rights in the choice of format when a work is exhibited or performed.

– The use or the refusal to use a canonical format within a given genre (such as landscape painting or the sonnet) as a guarantee of the legitimacy and value of the work/artist. The role of expectations according to the various fields, genres and periods implying acceptance of originality and experimentation in varying degrees.

Proposals of 300-word total (in French or in English) accompanied by a brief biography should be sent by 31 December 2019 to the following address:

Notification:  31 January 2020.

A selection of essays will be published in the online journal Interfaces: authors should submit their papers by 1 December 2020.

Organising committee: Valérie Morisson, Candice Lemaire, Sophie Aymes.

Scientific committee:

Nella Arambasin (Université de Bourgogne-Franche-Comté, France)

Phillipe Bazin (ENSAB, France)

Catherine Bernard (Université Paris-Diderot, France)

Aliki Briane (Camberwell College of Art; Westminster University, London, UK)

Audrey Goodman (Georgia State University, Atlanta, USA)

Jessica Watson (Musée des Beaux-Arts, Dijon, France)

Jeux de formats

Colloque international

Université de Bourgogne (UBFC)

22-23 Octobre 2020

Conférenciers invités : Hermione Wiltshire (Royal College of Art, Londres)

David Zerbib (École Supérieure des Arts, Annecy ; Haute École d’Art et de Design, Genève)

Partant de la définition du format proposée par David Zerbib, comme « convention ou agencement de paramètres matériels, techniques et symboliques permettant de manière relativement stabilisée l’identification et l’évaluation des œuvres et autres artefacts dans un contexte culturel donné »[3], ce colloque international proposera une réflexion sur la double nature du format, à la fois contrainte et condition de la créativité. Les notions de dimension, d’échelle, de proportion, de durée sont connexes à celles de format, terme qui navigue entre la forme et la norme, se rapproche de la matrice et peut tendre dangereusement vers le formatage. On abordera donc le rôle du format dans la création, développant une réflexion sur ses usages en art : est-il à ce point intrinsèquement lié à l’œuvre qu’il ne puisse varier sans en modifier l’essence ? En effet, le format imposé à un graveur, illustrateur, photographe, écrivain, poète, cinéaste, acteur ou danseur dessine un espace de création conventionnel et normé, voire standardisé, mais éventuellement modifiable. Comme toute convention artistique, le format –inscrit dans un système de signes et d’usages induisant une hiérarchisation – peut être transgressé lors de jeux de conversions, déplacements, adaptations, emprunts, hybridations, décompositions, réinventions.

Que le choix d’un format se fasse en amont de l’œuvre (imposé par une commande, un lieu ou un genre), au moment de sa réalisation (dans le cas d’une impression par exemple) ou bien de son exposition, il affecte tant la création que la réception de l’œuvre. Entendu comme convention sociale et artistique, il garantit des compatibilités techniques, pratiques, culturelles ou esthétiques. Le format se comprend dès lors dans une chaîne de contraintes au sein d’une production impliquant différents acteurs, outils et matériaux. C’est évidemment le cas de l’imprimerie et de la photographie où le format résulte à la fois de dispositifs techniques, de modes opératoires et de conventions artistiques. Pourtant si la nécessité de formats normés dans l’industrie, les sciences dures ou la communication semble évidente, en quoi l’est-elle aussi dans le domaine des arts semblant privilégier la fantaisie et l’inventivité ?

Les propositions de communication peuvent aborder les questions suivantes :

– Les motivations (techniques, sociales, médiologiques, culturelles ou esthétiques) de la contrainte du format ainsi que l’évolution de ces cadres, en tenant compte de « la plus ou moins grande incrustation culturelle et historique » de certains formats soulignée par Olivier Quintyn[4].

– La manière dont le format dialogue avec le thème de l’œuvre en termes de coïncidence ou d’écart.

–  Le rapport entre la taille de l’œuvre imprimée, présentée ou jouée et l’espace dans lequel elle s’inscrit.

– La nature et l’effet des procédés d’agrandissement ou de réduction qui affectent le régime de visibilité de l’œuvre mais aussi son rapport ontologique au réel (on pensera au passage du croquis réalisé sur de petits carnets à la toile, à la modélisation ou encore aux phénomènes de pixellisation lié à l’agrandissement). Comment l’œuvre existe-t-elle, persiste-t-elle, évolue-t-elle dans différents formats ? Qu’en est-il du fragment (dans le cas du sampling par exemple) ?

– La variation ou stabilité du format au sein d’une série qui peut induire des rythmes, séquentialités, temporalités et spatialités différentes.

– La manière dont certains artistes attirent l’attention sur la facticité ou le pouvoir du format comme contrainte et vecteur d’idéologies.

– Les tentatives de certains créateurs pour abolir le format : peut-on envisager un art sans format aucun ?

– L’importance du format dans l’expérience et la réception de l’œuvre ainsi qu’au sein des dispositifs de diffusion (normes de présentation, cadre d’exposition, etc.).

– Le rôle et les droits juridiques du créateur dans la décision de présenter l’œuvre dans un format donné.

– L’impact du respect ou non-respect d’un format canonique associé à un genre (celui du paysage en peinture ou du sonnet en poésie par exemple) sur la légitimité et la valeur de l’œuvre et de l’artiste. L’originalité et l’expérimentation sont en effet plus ou moins attendues selon les domaines, les genres artistiques et les périodes.

Les propositions de communication en français ou en anglais doivent parvenir avant le 31 décembre 2019 à l’adresse suivante :

Merci d’inclure un titre, un résumé (environ 300 mots), une brève notice bio-bibliographique, votre affiliation professionnelle et vos coordonnées.

La réponse sera donnée fin janvier 2020. Une publication après expertise est prévue dans la revue Interfaces et les articles devront être envoyés pour le 1er décembre 2020.

Comité d’Organisation (EA 4182) : Valérie Morisson, Candice Lemaire, Sophie Aymes.

Comité scientifique :

Nella Arambasin (Université de Bourgogne-Franche-Comté, France)

Phillipe Bazin (ENSAB, France)

Catherine Bernard (Université Paris-Diderot, France)

Aliki Briane (Camberwell College of Art; Westminster University, Londres, Royaume Uni)

Audrey Goodman (Georgia State University, Atlanta, USA)

Jessica Watson (Musée des Beaux-Arts, Dijon, France)

[1] David Zerbib, « L’Ère du format », in David Zerbib (ed.). In Octavo, Des formats de l’art. Dijon and Annecy: Les Presses du réel – ESAAA, 2015.

[2] « Poétique(s) et pragmatiques du format » (In Octavo, p. 50).

[3] David Zerbib, « L’Ère du format », dans David Zerbib (dir.). In Octavo, Des formats de l’art. Dijon et Annecy : Les Presses du réel ; ESAAA, 2015.

[4] « Poétique(s) et pragmatiques du format », dans In Octavo, op. cit., p. 50.

Call for conference hosts – IAWIS/AIERTI 2023 and 2026

The IAWIS/AIERTI Executive Board is soliciting proposals from potential hosts for the 2023 and the 2026 versions of our international triennial conference. Le Comité exécutif de IAWIS/AIERTI lance un appel à propositions concernant les futurs congrès en 2023 ou en 2026.

Les deux derniers congrès s’étant déroulés en Europe, à Lausanne 2017, et le prochain à Luxembourg 2020, il serait bienvenu de tenir l’un des prochains congrès dans un pays d’accueil Outre-Atlantique.

As the last two conferences were held in Europe, Lausanne 2017 and Luxemburg 2020, it would be ideal to hold one of these upcoming conferences in a country situated across the Atlantic.

Proposals should include a description of the conference theme, along with a few paragraphs providing information on the venue and its facilities for hosting ~250 participants, your organizing team, your strategy for maintaining English-French bilingualism, possible excursions, and possible sources of funding.

Veuillez nous envoyer une description du thème du colloque, ainsi que quelques paragraphes précisant le lieu et son infrastructure pour accueillir environ 250 participants, votre équipe, votre stratégie pour maintenir le bilinguisme français-anglais, des excursions possibles, et des sources possibles de financement.

Adresses: Liliane Louvel liliane.louvel[@] et Laurence Roussillon-Constanty laurence.constanty[@]