Art into Pop (Redux)

Session Convenor:

Gavin Butt (Northumbria University)

Please email your paper proposal to the session convenor using the Paper Proposal Form


In 1987, Simon Frith and Howard Horne published the path-breaking book Art into Pop, detailing the impact of art school on British popular music from sixties bohemianism to postmodernism in the 1980s. Bringing perspectives from the sociology of music to bear upon the subject of fine art education, their ‘cross-over’ methodology has remained largely unsurpassed in delineating the art school’s decisive role in shaping histories of popular music and culture. That is, until the recent decade whence a welter of new academic studies, popular histories, autobiographies, and exhibitions have appeared which, either wholly or in part, have served to update Frith and Horne’s original contribution: with perspectives on bands as diverse as Roxy Music, Destroy All Monsters, Gang of Four, Pylon, and Soft Cell, and institutions including Cal Arts, Newcastle University, and Leeds Polytechnic.

This session seeks contributions that continue to renew understandings of the entwined histories of art education and pop music.

Proposals might consider issues such as:

  • avant-garde experiment and popular audiences
  • performance art and street style
  • fine-art media and sound/music
  • the economics and politics of art education
  • pedagogy and DIY
  • conceptual rock and art theory
  • artistic risk and industry/commodity.

All disciplinary perspectives are welcome, and the international scope of the panel is unlimited. Papers charting the histories of art and pop outside the UK and US are particularly encouraged, as are those focusing on artists who are women, queer or people of colour.

Submit a paper

Please email your paper proposals direct to the session convenor above, using the Paper Proposal Form

You need to 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 the title is what appears online, in social media and in the printed programme.

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

Deadline for submissions: Monday 21 October 2019

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