“Beyond Genius and Muse: Collaborating Couples in 20th Century Arts” (International)

Abstract Deadline: December 16, 2016

Dates: April 18-19, 2017

Location: University of Bristol

CFP Link

Common perceptions of the artist still picture a lonely genius in a room of his own, writing, painting, or composing great works in isolation while amanuenses or, more likely, his wife takes care of worldly matters. Conversely, cultural history can sometimes cast artists as vessels floating on a tide of external events. Reality is more complex, especially in the twentieth century: here, the pace of change in societal and relationship dynamics render both these imaginary positions problematic. Examining collaborating couples can force us to rethink the paradigms of working relationships in the arts. Whether couples collaborated or hindered each other, what are the means to describe such complex creative partnerships? How can feminism, gender theories, and queer studies help shift perceptions and rediscover hidden powers and intimate connections? What methodologies can we use to research and write about intra-art and interdisciplinary couples? How do such couples perceive themselves and their work? This conference seeks to engage with all kinds of collaborating couples, be it cases where traditional roles are intact, reversed, or changed otherwise.

Keynotes
Prof. Frances Spalding CBE, FRSL
Anthony Payne & Jane Manning OBE

Proposals can be for 20-minute individual papers or 90-minute collaborative panels or lecture-recitals of max. 90 minutes. Proposals should not exceed 300 words, biographies (optional) 150 words. The deadline for receipt of proposals is Friday, 16th December 2016.

Please address aspects of methodology and include a brief speaker biography in your proposal. If you would like to be considered for one of three postgraduate travel bursaries, please identify yourself as a postgraduate student. Please use the submission form on this website (alternatively email a Word document to collaboratingcouples@yahoo.co.uk). We aim to inform you of further steps by mid-January 2016.

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