AESTHETICS FOR BIRDS

Aesthetics and Philosophy of Art for Everyone


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WORKSHOP: ART, PERCEPTION AND HISTORY

The American Society for Aesthetics Board of Trustees has approved support for the Workshop on Art, Perception, and History, at the University of Toronto, May 5-6, 2017. The Workshop is organized by Sonia Sedivy, Associate Professor of Philosophy, University of Toronto.

ASA has awarded up to $4,600 in support, plus an additional $1000 to support attendance at the Workshop by ASA student members. Support is also being provided by several units of the University of Toronto. The workshop is free and open to the public.

CONFERENCE WEB SITE

NEW! Poster for the Workshop

 

The Manneporte (Étretat), Claude Monet, 1883, The Met Museum

Speakers at the workshop will include:

From Art History

  • Whitney Davis, University of California, Berkeley, Art History

http://arthistory.berkeley.edu/person/1639581-whitney-davis

  • Jason Gaiger, University of Oxford, The Ruskin School of Drawing and Fine Art

http://www.rsa.ox.ac.uk/people/jason-gaiger

  • Amy Powell, University of California, Irvine, Art History

http://www.faculty.uci.edu/profile.cfm?faculty_id=5553

  • Paul G. Smith, University of Warwick, History of Art

https://www2.warwick.ac.uk/fac/arts/arthistory/staff/smith/

From Philosophy of Art or Perception

  • Diarmuid Costello, philosophy, University of Warwick

http://www2.warwick.ac.uk/fac/soc/philosophy/people/costello/

  • Robert Hopkins, New York University, Philosophy

http://philosophy.fas.nyu.edu/object/roberthopkins.html

  • Bence Nanay, University of Antwerp, Centre for Philosophical Psychology

http://uahost.uantwerpen.be/bence.nanay/

  • Belinda Piercy, University of Toronto, Philosophy, Ph.D. 2016.
  • Sonia Sedivy, University of Toronto, Philosophy

http://www.utsc.utoronto.ca/people/sedivy/

  • Kendall L. Walton, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Philosophy

https://sites.lsa.umich.edu/kendallwalton/

The workshop will focus on the way that works of art and visual culture are poised at the intersection of history and perception. Such works are imbued with their historical situation and with historical relationship to other works. Yet for the most part, it is through their perceptible properties that they have their impact.

To explore this nexus, the workshop aims to bring together art historians with two sub-disciplines from philosophy – philosophy of perception as well as aesthetics. While art historians and philosophers of art have collaborated to some extent, bringing philosophers of perception explicitly into the mix is a recent development. The objective of the workshop is to initiate fully three-way collaborative research between art historians, philosophers of art and aesthetics, and philosophers of perception.

The main goal of the workshop is to create bridges between these three fields of study to produce integrated, multi-dimensional research into works of art and visual culture. A small intensive workshop is ideal for discussing methodological differences, for sharing knowledge and for facilitating shared language.

The workshop will address a number of questions of broad interest to which art historians and philosophers of art and perception have turned their attention. For example:

1. How are historical developments made perceptibly manifest in artworks and non-art pictures more broadly, including photographs?

2. What is aesthetic value? How can such value be both historically contingent and perceptual in nature?

3. How do pictures work? How do diverse kinds of pictorial vehicles make contents available?

4. What is distinctive about photographs?

5. What makes properties aesthetic and when is perceptual experience aesthetic?


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AESTHETIC NORMATIVITY CONFERENCE

The American Society for Aesthetics has helped fund a conference on Aesthetic Normativity that will take place May 19-20, 2017, in Salt Lake City. The conference is organized by John Dyck (PhD student at CUNY Graduate Center) and C. Thi Nguyen (Assistant Professor of Philosophy, Utah Valley University). Additional funding is being provided by Utah Valley University and the University of Utah.

The conference will be held at the Utah Museum of Contemporary Art in Salt Lake City. Dominic McIver Lopes (Distinguished Professor of Philosophy at the University of British Columbia) will be the keynote speaker. Confirmed speakers also include Nicholas Riggle (University of San Diego), Paul C. Taylor (Penn State University), and Katherine Thomson-Jones (Oberlin College).

Diva, Marthe Keller, 1993, The Met Museum

The conference will be free and open to the public, although pre-registration will be required. Pre-register at the conference website: <objectionable.net/artrules>.

Aesthetic and artistic normativity pertain to what’s good or bad in beauty and art. They speak to what makes something—or someone—beautiful or ugly. We are seeing a renewed attention to normative issues in philosophy of art and aesthetics. The goal of this conference is to discuss and assess directions for research.

The conference is free and open to the public; pre-registration is required. Pre-register at the conference website: <objectionable.net/artrules>.


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AMERICAN SOCIETY FOR AESTHETICS EASTERN MEETING

The American Society for Aesthetics Eastern Division will meet April 28-29, 2017, at the Independence Park Hotel in Philadelphia.

The conference program spans two full days, Friday and Saturday, April 28-29.

Designs for Four Upholstered Chairs, Charles Hindley and Sons, 1841–84, Met Museum

PRELIMINARY PROGRAM (April 3, 2017)

On-line pre-registration is strongly encouraged to assist us in planning. Look for the red REGISTER button on the upper-right corner of this page. To get the ASA member rates, you must FIRST log into the ASA web page.

On-site registration will begin on Thursday, April 27th, in the evening. The conference rate for Independence Park is available for Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights. As soon as we receive your registration, we will send you the link to use at the hotel for conference rates.

Pre-registration (by April 24th) for both days:

  • $70 (ASA members)
  • $90 (non-members)
  • $30 (student ASA members)
  • $40 (student non-ASA members)

On-site or same-week registration (April 24th or later) for both days:

  • $80 (ASA members)
  • $100 (non-ASA members)
  • $35 (student ASA members)
  • $45 (student non-ASA members)

One-day registration (pre-registration or on-site):

  • $60 (ASA members and non-members)
  • $30 (student ASA members and non-members)

Mail-in pre-registration (must be received by April 21)

Pre-registrations are greatly appreciated to assist us in planning. Please note that all conference presenters and panel proposers must be members of the ASA. You can find information about joining the ASA at the following address: http://aesthetics-online.org/

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us: Brandon Cooke (University of Minnesota, Mankato) cooke@mnsu.edu or Alessandro Giovannelli (Lafayette College) giovannelli@lafayette.edu. Thank you!

Brandon Cooke and Alessandro Giovannelli
Co-Chairs, American Society for Aesthetics Eastern Division Meeting


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ASA FUNDS CONFERENCE ON THE PHILOSOPHY OF PORTRAITS

“Portrait of the Artist” by Gilbert Stuart (American, North Kingston, Rhode Island 1755–1828 Boston, Massachusetts) via The Metropolitan Museum of Art is licensed under CC0 1.0

The American Society for Aesthetics Board of Trustees has approved a grant of $3,990 for a conference on “The Philosophy of Portraits” at the University of Maryland, April 7-8, 2018.

The conference has been organized by Hans Maes, Senior Lecturer in History and Philosophy of Art and Director of the Aesthetics Research Centre at the University of Kent, and Jerrold Levinson, Distinguished Professor of Philosophy at the University of Maryland. Confirmed keynote speakers include A.W. Eaton, Cynthia Freeland, and Jenefer Robinson.

A call for additional papers for the conference will be announced shortly. ASA is funding two travel grants for ASA student members of $500 each for papers selected for the program.

The conference registration fee of $35 will be waived for all ASA members attending the conference.


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QUESTIONING AESTHETICS SYMPOSIUM: BLACK AESTHETICS

The American Society for Aesthetics is pleased to provide $7500 in partial support of the Questioning Aesthetics Symposium: Black Aesthetics, to be held at Hampshire College, Amherst, MA, March 31-April 1, 2017.

“Aesthetic Arrangement” by hmomoy is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Funding is also being provided by Hampshire College, the Transdisciplinary Aesthetics Foundation, Amherst College, Mount Holyoke College, Smith College, The University of Massachusetts at Amherst, and the Five-College Lecture Fund.

The conference is co-organized by Monique Roelofs, Professor of Philosophy at Hampshire College, and Michael Kelly, Professor of Philosophy at the University of North Carolina, Charlotte, and the Founder and President of the Transdisciplinary Aesthetics Foundation.

The symposium will be free and open to the public.

NEW (2/27/2017): Symposium Program

Web sites for the Symposium:

Poster: http://aesthetics-online.org/resource/resmgr/conferences/QAS-BlackAesthetics-Poster.pdf

Four grants of $500 each, made possible by an ASA Major Projects Initiative Grant, have been awarded to ASA student  members to attend the Symposium:

  • James Cobb, English and Comparative Literature, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
  • Miguel Gualdrón, Philosophy, DePaul University
  • Darla Migan, Philosophy, Vanderbilt University
  • Anahit Poturyan, Aesthetics and Politics, California Institute of the Arts

The symposium comprises five panels with 16 speakers, followed by a roundtable for all attendees. Confirmed speakers are: GerShun Avilez, Caitlin Cherry, Anthony Cokes, Jeremy M. Glick, Deborah Goffe, James Haile III, Phillip Brian Harper, Daphne Lamothe, Meleko Mokgosi, Amy Abugo Ongiri, Mickaella Perina, Kevin Quashie, Cherise Smith, Paul C. Taylor, Simone White, and Mabel O. Wilson.

Related events on Thursday, March 30, include a workshop by Mabel O. Wilson from 2:00-4:00 pm, and a lecture by Fred Moten at 5:00 pm, both at Hampshire College. Moten will also be doing a poetry reading on that same day at 8:00 pm at UMass/Amherst.


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ETHICS AND AESTHETICS OF STAND-UP COMEDY CONFERENCE

 

WHEN: 4/5/17-4/8/17

WHERE: Bucknell University

CONTACT: Sheila Lintott (sheila.lintott@bucknell.edu)

The American Society for Aesthetics has awarded $7,000 in partial support for the Conference on the Ethics and Aesthetics of Stand-Up Comedy at Bucknell University, Lewisburg, PA, April 5-8, 2017. The conference was organized by Sheila Lintott, Associate Professor, and Jason Leddington, Associate Professor, both of the Department of Philosophy.

NEW! Complete schedule for the Conference

NEW! Registration form for the Conference

The interdisciplinary conference will explore the intersections of stand-up comedy with other art forms and its potential for dialogue with social and political critiques. In addition to academic papers and presentations, the conference will include a performance workshop, an “open-mic” night, roundtable discussions with comedians, and stand-up comedy performances.

The Conference Organizing Committee includes faculty from English, Interdisciplinary Arts, and Women’s and Gender Studies, representing several colleges in the region.

For more information, click http://www.bucknell.edu/BUStandUpComCon


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CALL FOR COMMENTS – NEGATIVE EMOTIONS IN ART RECEPTION

The journal Behavioral and Brain Sciences is looking for commentary on an article that they have accepted: “The DISTANCE-EMBRACING Model of the Enjoyment of Negative Emotions in Art Reception”.
Note that, as they say:
5. BUT … it’s not all about articles previously published, or position in the field. It’s not necessary to have published in the area, and it’s not necessary to have a current academic appointment.We make efforts to include proposals coming both from established figures and total newcomers. An engaging idea elicited by the article, an illuminating application of the target article concept to an allied field, or a truly clever riposte is often all that’s needed.”
Title: The DISTANCE-EMBRACING Model of the Enjoyment of Negative Emotions in Art Reception

Authors: Winfried Menninghaus, Valentin Wagner, Julian Hanich, Eugen Wassiliwizky, Thomas Jacobsen, and Stefan Koelsch

Deadline for Commentary Proposals: Thursday, March 16, 2017

About Commentary Proposals: When a target article or recent book has been accepted for BBS commentary, the editorial office sends out the call for commentary proposals to thousands of people. Commentary proposals help the BBS editors craft a well-balanced commentary invitation list.

Please keep in mind that we are not asking you to submit a commentary — but rather, a short proposal in order to be considered as an invited author after the proposal deadline.

If this target article interests you as a possible subject for commentary, please download the full pre-print to see if you would like to propose a commentary.

Abstract:

Why are negative emotions so central in art reception far beyond tragedy? Revisiting classical aesthetics in light of recent psychological research, we present a novel model to explain this much-discussed (apparent) paradox. We argue that negative emotions are an important resource for the arts in general rather than a special license for exceptional art forms only. The underlying rationale is that negative emotions have been shown to be particularly powerful in securing attention, intense emotional involvement, and high memorability—and hence precisely in what artworks strive for. Two groups of processing mechanisms are identified that conjointly adopt the particular powers of negative emotions for art’s purposes. The first group consists of psychological distancing mechanisms that are activated along with the cognitive schemata of art, representation, and fiction. These schemata imply personal safety and control over continuing or discontinuing exposure to artworks, thereby preventing negative emotions from becoming outright incompatible with expectations of enjoyment. This distancing sets the stage for a second group of processing components that allow art recipients to positively embrace the experiencing of negative emotions, thereby rendering art reception more intense, more interesting, more emotionally moving, more profound, and occasionally even more beautiful. These components include compositional interplays of positive and negative emotions, the effects of aesthetic virtues of using the media of (re)presentation (musical sound, words/language, color, shapes) on emotion perception, and meaning-making efforts. Moreover, our DISTANCING–EMBRACING model proposes that concomitant mixed emotions often help to integrate negative emotions into altogether pleasurable trajectories.

Interested? Full information about how to submit a proposal here.


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ASA FUNDS WORKSHOP ON ART, PERCEPTION, AND HISTORY

The American Society for Aesthetics Board of Trustees has approved support for the Workshop on Art, Perception, and History, at the University of Toronto, May 5-6, 2017. The Workshop is organized by Sonia Sedivy, Associate Professor of Philosophy, University of Toronto.

ASA has awarded up to $4,600 in support, plus an additional $1000 to support attendance at the Workshop by ASA student members. Support is also being provided by several units of the University of Toronto. The workshop is free and open to the public.

“Chilkat Blanket, Field Museum of Natural History, Chicago, Illinois, Made of Goat Hair and Cedar Bark” by Field Museum of Natural History is licensed under CC0 1.0

“Chilkat Blanket, Field Museum of Natural History, Chicago, Illinois, Made of Goat Hair and Cedar Bark” by Field Museum of Natural History is licensed under CC0 1.0

Speakers will include:

From Art History

  • Whitney Davis, University of California, Berkeley, Art History

http://arthistory.berkeley.edu/person/1639581-whitney-davis

  • Jason Gaiger, University of Oxford, The Ruskin School of Drawing and Fine Art

http://www.rsa.ox.ac.uk/people/jason-gaiger

  • Amy Powell, University of California, Irvine, Art History

http://www.faculty.uci.edu/profile.cfm?faculty_id=5553

  • Paul G. Smith, University of Warwick, History of Art

https://www2.warwick.ac.uk/fac/arts/arthistory/staff/smith/

From Philosophy of Art or Perception

  • Diarmuid Costello, philosophy, University of Warwick

http://www2.warwick.ac.uk/fac/soc/philosophy/people/costello/

  • Robert Hopkins, New York University, Philosophy

http://philosophy.fas.nyu.edu/object/roberthopkins.html

  • Bence Nanay, University of Antwerp, Centre for Philosophical Psychology

http://uahost.uantwerpen.be/bence.nanay/

  • Belinda Piercy, University of Toronto, Philosophy, Ph.D. 2016.
  • Sonia Sedivy, University of Toronto, Philosophy

http://www.utsc.utoronto.ca/people/sedivy/

  • Kendall L. Walton, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Philosophy

https://sites.lsa.umich.edu/kendallwalton/

The workshop will focus on the way that works of art and visual culture are poised at the intersection of history and perception. Such works are imbued with their historical situation and with historical relationship to other works. Yet for the most part, it is through their perceptible properties that they have their impact.

To explore this nexus, the workshop aims to bring together art historians with two sub-disciplines from philosophy – philosophy of perception as well as aesthetics. While art historians and philosophers of art have collaborated to some extent, bringing philosophers of perception explicitly into the mix is a recent development. The objective of the workshop is to initiate fully three-way collaborative research between art historians, philosophers of art and aesthetics, and philosophers of perception.

The main goal of the workshop is to create bridges between these three fields of study to produce integrated, multi-dimensional research into works of art and visual culture. A small intensive workshop is ideal for discussing methodological differences, for sharing knowledge and for facilitating shared language.

The workshop will address a number of questions of broad interest to which art historians and philosophers of art and perception have turned their attention. For example:

1. How are historical developments made perceptibly manifest in artworks and non-art pictures more broadly, including photographs?

2. What is aesthetic value? How can such value be both historically contingent and perceptual in nature?

3. How do pictures work? How do diverse kinds of pictorial vehicles make contents available?

4. What is distinctive about photographs?

5. What makes properties aesthetic and when is perceptual experience aesthetic?


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ASA TO AWARD DIVERSITY CURRICULUM GRANTS

The American Society of Aesthetics is pleased to announce the 2017 competition for Curriculum Diversification Grants.  Up to three grants for up to $5,000 each will be awarded in 2017.  The application deadline is May 1, 2017.

Coloured lithograph, 1868, depicting a double rainbow, by René Henri Digeon after Étienne Antoine Eugène Ronjat

Grantees will develop detailed annotated reading lists, complete with background reading, that are organized into modules covering core areas in aesthetics/philosophy of art. The idea here is not to develop modules oriented primarily around gender, race, disability, etc., but, rather, to promote diversity at the heart of mainstream aesthetics and philosophy of art.  Modules should be usable in, for instance: introduction to aesthetics/philosophy of art courses; courses on particular historical figures or movements (e.g., Plato’s or Aristotle’s aesthetics, Medieval aesthetics, Scottish Enlightenment aesthetics, Continental aesthetics); courses devoted topics or problems within core areas in aesthetics/philosophy of art (e.g., Fiction, Film, Narrative, Music, Depiction, Art and Ethics, Ontology of Art, Definitions of Art, Theories of the Aesthetic).

These modules can be “diverse” in a variety of ways by: (1) centrally featuring writing by members of underrepresented groups; (2) including works that give significant philosophical attention to artworks by members of underrepresented groups or from the non-European tradition; (3) devoting significant philosophical attention to topics related to members of underrepresented groups (e.g., disability in philosophy of dance, the relevance of social standpoint to aesthetic judgment, objectification and the genre of the nude, racist jokes and the ethics of humor, implicit bias in aesthetic judgment, and so on).

Each grantee should produce at least 30 English-language readings each (including translations into English), organized according to topics (or “modules” as described above) within mainstream aesthetics. (As noted above, modules include, but certainly are not limited to: ontology of art, definitions of art, theories of the aesthetic, depiction, metaphor, imagination and make-believe, taste, beauty, art and ethics, humor, historical topics such as medieval aesthetics, or any of the individual arts.) Each suggested reading should come with an annotation of at least one paragraph that gives a general summary of the reading and explains how it fits in the broader topic of the module. The citation for the reading should indicate sufficient information so that the reading can be readily obtained by potential users for teaching (e.g., journal article in a widely available database, book chapter generally available at North American libraries). Grantees must agree to respond to one round of requested revisions when deemed necessary by the review committee.

Previous successful projects are available at: http://aesthetics-online.org/?CurriculumGrants

Winning authors will retain copyright in their own modules, but the ASA reserves a non-exclusive royalty-free license to publish the winning modules for its own official purposes, including (but not limited to) publication on the ASA web site. Each author must certify that the module has not previously been published in either print or on-line media.

Applications should include:

  • Separate cover sheet with applicant’s name and contact information
  • CV
  • Detailed description of the project (no more than 1,500 words).
  • Budget and justification for the budget
    • Applicants may request funds for a summer stipend at the applicant’s regular institutional rate.
    • The budget can also include the cost of books purchased for this project.

Applications should be prepared for anonymous review, in either Word or PDF format.  The applicant’s name and contact information appearing only on a separate cover sheet and, of course, CV.  Applications will be reviewed anonymously by members of the ASA’s Diversity Committee, Feminist Caucus Committee, and Board of Trustees.  Only one proposal per applicant.  All decisions are final.  Applicants must be members of the ASA.

No grant will be awarded if, in the opinion of the judges, no proposal of sufficient merit and appropriateness is received.

Applications should be directed to A.W. Eaton, Diversity Committee Co-Chair, at: eaton.aw@gmail.com  Deadline for receipt of applications is 5 pm CDT Monday, May 1, 2017.  Grantees will be announced by Friday, June 2, 2017.  Projects due by Monday, August 21, 2017, unless otherwise requested and approved.

The complete CFA in PDF format is available here:

http://aesthetics-online.org/resource/resmgr/files/diversity/Curriculum.Diversification.C.pdf


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ASA TO SPONSOR AESTHETICS SPEAKERS AT 2017 DIVERSITY INSTITUTES

The Board of Trustees of the American Society for Aesthetics has approved sponsoring aesthetics speakers at three diversity institutes in the summer of 2017:

  • (1) the Summer Program for Women in Philosophy at UC San Diego, June 28-July 8;
  • (2) the 20th Annual Rutgers Summer Institute for Diversity in Philosophy, July 10-17;
  • (3) the Summer Immersion Program at Brown University, July 28.

chinese-ornament

For each of the three institutes, the ASA-sponsored speaker will attend the Institute for two days, give a 2-1/2 hour presentation (including a question and answer period), and take meals with the students. Each speaker will receive an honorarium, plus travel, lodging, and meals at the institute site.

For more information on each institute, please consult their web sites:

Applications are now be sought for these appointments. Applicants to be the ASA speaker must be current members of the ASA. Applicants should send a current CV (or URL of a current CV) and a brief statement (no more than 750 words) of the proposed presentation in Word or PDF format. In each case, presenters will be introducing aesthetics to undergraduate philosophy majors with little or no experience with aesthetics.

Applicants should clearly indicate which program(s) for which they would like to be considered. Applicants can ask to be considered for one, two, or three of the institutes, but only one application should be submitted. ASA-sponsored speakers at previous summer institutes are eligible, although priority will be given to applicants who have not previously presented on ASA’s behalf.

Applications should be sent by e-mail no later than March 1, 2017, to the ASA Secretary-Treasurer at secretary-treasurer@aesthetics-online.org. A decision by ASA on finalists is expected no later than March 15 by an ad hoc committee appointed by the ASA President. The final speaker selection will be made by each respective institute director.

http://aesthetics-online.org/resource/resmgr/files/CFA_Diversity_Institutes_201.pdf