Open Access Publication Grant for the anthology on performance conservation!

How many books can I read? - The Statesman

We are delighted to announce that our forthcoming anthology, Performance: The Ethics and Politics of Conservation and Care, has been granted funds by the Swiss National Foundation to cover the Open Access processing fees. Published by Routledge, the book will be available in hardback, paperback, and e-book formats this summer. For a sneak peek, check out some key details and a brief summary of the book.

Performance: The Ethics and the Politics of Conservation and Care

This book focuses on performance and performance-based artworks as seen through the lens of conservation, which has long been overlooked in the larger theoretical debates about whether and how performance remains.

Unraveling the complexities involved in the conservation of performance, Performance: The Ethics and the Politics of Conservation and Care (vol. 1) brings this new understanding to bear in examining performance as an object of study, experience, acquisition, and care. In so doing, it presents both theoretical frameworks and functional paradigms for thinking about—and enacting—the conservation of performance. Further, while the conservation of performance is undertheorized, performance is nevertheless increasingly entering the art market and the museum, meaning that there is an urgent need for discourse on how to care for these works long-term. In recent years, a few pioneering conservators, curators, and scholars have begun to create frameworks for the long-term care of performance. This volume presents, explicates, and contextualizes their work so that a larger discourse can commence. It will thus serve the needs of conservation students and professors, for whom literature on this subject is sorely needed.

This interdisciplinary book thus implements a novel rethinking of performance that will challenge and revitalize its conception in many fields, such as art history, theater, performance studies, heritage studies, and anthropology.

With chapter contributions by Pip Laurenson, Rebecca Schneider with Hanna Hölling, Gabriella Giannachi, Helia Marcal, Shadreck Chirikure, Iona Goldi-Scott, Brian Castriota with Claire Welsh, Farris Wabeh, Kelli Morgan, Kongo Astronauts (Eléonore Hellio and Michel Ekeba), Dread Scott, Karolina Wilczyńska, Megan Cori Olinghouse with Megan Metcalf, Erin Brannigan and Louise Lawson, Cauleen Smith and Jacob Badcock.

Editors: Hanna B. Hölling, Jules Pelta Feldman and Emilie Magnin

The book has emerged from the collaborative research project, Performance: Conservation, Materiality, Knowledge, situated at the Bern University of Applied Sciences – Academy of the Arts and supported by the Swiss National Fund.

Book Presentation: Object-Event-Performance

Wednesday, February 22, 2023, 5 p.m. CET / 11 a.m. EST

The SNSF research project Performance: Conservation, Materiality, Knowledge, in collaboration with the SNSF research project Activating Fluxus, is pleased to host a public presentation of the book titled  Object-Event-Performance: Art, Materiality, and Continuity Since the 1960s (2022; ed. by Hanna B. Hölling). The event will take place within the Research Wednesday seminar series.

Much of the artwork that rose to prominence in the second half of the twentieth century took on novel forms—such as installation, performance, event, video, film, earthwork, and intermedia works with interactive and networked components—that pose a new set of questions about what art actually is, both physically and conceptually. For conservators, this raises an existential challenge when considering what elements of these artworks can and should be preserved.   This event features a book that revisits the traditional notions of conservation and museum collecting that developed over the centuries to suit a conception of art as static, fixed, and permanent objects. Conservators and museum professionals increasingly struggle with issues of conservation for works created from the mid-twentieth to the twenty-first century that are unstable over time. As participants in conservation, the contributors to this volume—often non-conservators—form a community of practice that share common interests.

Speakers include: Hannah B Higgins, Gregory Zinman, Andrea Gyorody and Megan Metcalf. Moderator: Jules Pelta Feldman.

The book asks what it means to conserve artworks that fundamentally address and embody the notion of change and, through this questioning, guide us to reevaluate the meaning of art, of objects, and of materiality itself.  Object-Event-Performance considers a selection of post-1960s artworks that have all been chosen for their instability, changeability, performance elements, and processes that pose questions about their relationship to conservation practices. With chapters by Hannah B Higgins, Hanna B. Hölling, Gregory Zinman, Andrea Gyorody, Alison D’Amato, Megan Metcalf, Rebecca Uchill, Susanne Neubauer, Beryl Graham and Johannes Hedinger, this book aims to become a welcome resource on contemporary conservation for art historians, scholars of performance, dance, theater and museum studies, curators, and conservators.

The book has been published by Bard Graduate Center, within the series Cultural Histories of the Material World (series editor: Peter Miller) and is available from the University of Chicago Press (PDF and cloth).