ASAP/8 CFP: Alternatives to the Present

How and to what ends do the contemporary arts conceptualize, represent, and model new spaces and temporalities?

In recent years, much has been said about the difficulty of representing new spaces and times at “the end of history.” Fredric Jameson and Mark Fisher have famously pronounced that it is nowadays easier to imagine apocalypse on Earth than it is to conceive of an alternative to the timespace of capitalism. And yet surely there are still possibilities for introducing temporal and spatial otherness to the imagination in the forms of heterochrony, alternate futures and histories, and alternate conceptions of temporality and spatiality based in nonwestern cultures, affective perception, digital media, and barter or gift economies (not to mention altered states both geopolitical and cognitive).

The manifold practices of today’s literary, visual, media, and performing arts are in fact often devoted precisely to conceiving of such alternatives. Indeed, a minimal impulse towards some kind of “alterity” could be said to penetrate all art, irrespective of its medium, genre, place of origin, or ideological orientation. Therefore, we invite papers that examine the present status of imagining alternative spaces and times in all forms of contemporary art and artistic practice.

Possible topics include

  • possibilities for hybrid genres and artistic mediums
  • new narrative forms and unnatural narratives
  • art and theory that imagines the future or past
  • the artistic possibilities of imagining radical difference today
  • utopias, dystopias, and the changing status of utopian thinking as “social dreaming”
  • heterotopia and heterochrony
  • “zones” (of fantastic origin, of heterotopic space, of multidimensional time)
  • the contemporary practice of futurisms (“Afro-Futurism,” “Sino-Futurism,” etc.
  • architectural alternatives: ecotopia, ecopolis, etc.
  • sciences and the arts of the present
  • the timespace of augmented reality and digital gaming
  • time and the aural, the times/space of soundscape, music and heterotopia
  • dramatic timing, reimaginings of time and space as performance
  • manifesting alternative spaces and times specific to various artistic mediums: literature, visual arts, installation art, film, TV, theatre, music, digital arts, street art, performance art, architecture, urban planning

In keeping with the ASAP mission, we are especially interested in sessions that feature more than one artistic medium and more than one national tradition. The program committee will give preference to panels and roundtables that feature papers by scholars and artists working across and between disciplines.

Proposals should include 300-word abstracts for papers or 700-word abstracts for roundtables or panels, with email addresses and brief biographical statement for each speaker. See [asap8.ut.ee] for more information or contact [asap8info@gmail.com] with inquiries.

ASAP/8: “Artistic Alternatives to the Present” is hosted by University of Tartu in collaboration with the Program Committee of A.S.A.P. The symposium’s host organizers are Marina Grishakova and Jaak Tomberg, University of Tartu.

Deadline for submitting proposals: MARCH 26, 2016.

Please send submissions in Microsoft Word format to [asap8info@gmail.com].