Keeping Painting in its Place: The refusal of the expanded field

Session Convenors

Joanne Crawford, University of Leeds

Sarah Kate Wilson, University of Leeds

Session Abstract

Whilst the proliferation of media and alternative spaces of/for art has allowed sculpture to become an important player within the ‘expanded field’, it seems that painting remains stubbornly ‘fixed’ within its own physical and material limitations. Unable to fully move away from the application of paint onto a flat surface, especially when attempting to blur its own frame to move beyond it into the temporal and environmental spaces of the viewer, painting often finds itself in an uneasy alliance with film, installation or performance; to the point of being absorbed by the ‘other’ and obliterated as painting. A result of such encounters is that painting fails to locate its own threshold and falls into the category of ‘not-painting’. Instead of the old adage ‘But this is not art!’, we increasingly have ‘But this is not painting!’.

Consequently, as artists and historians, when we do attempt to question what painting is, or what it could possibly become, we are pulled right back into the ‘frame’. Painting, it seems, is becoming the last bastion of ‘true’ art for some, and is frustratingly confined to outmoded classificatory systems for others.

This session thereby invites historians, curators and practitioners to investigate the ways in which painting has historically been kept in its ‘place’, or within the ‘frame’, whilst also thinking about how it can move into an expanded field without losing its integrity as ‘painting’.

To offer a paper
Please email your paper proposals direct to the session convenors, details above.

Provide a title and abstract (250 words maximum) for a 25-minute paper (unless otherwise specified), your name and institutional affiliation (if any).

Please make sure the title is concise and reflects the contents of the paper because it will appear online, in social media and in the printed programme.

You should receive an acknowledgement of receipt of your submission within two weeks from the session convenors.

Deadline for submissions: Monday 5 November 2018

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