#4 EAST-SOUTHEAST (Fall 2017)

The recent cross-cultural turn in art history has opened up the eighteenth-century world in a variety of productive new ways. Yet the view of this global eighteenth century is still often that of Europe and North America looking East, rather than considering broader Asia’s view of contact among its many states and kingdoms spread out along the continent and across oceans. Trade, exploration, and diplomacy linked the region stretching from East Asia through Southeast Asia, around India, and across the Indian Ocean to the Middle East in ways that brought exotic goods from one end of this vast area to another. A few notable cases even forbade most or all Europeans from entering the country, choosing to strengthen their connections to their neighbors—even thousands of miles away across the seas—rather than to the Westerners who arrived in their harbors. Artists and artisans traveled between courts and ports; treasures and useful decorative objects brought far-flung nations into everyday contact; and imitations of the foreign competed with authentic imported goods in markets around the Eastern Hemisphere. The result is a complex and understudied area of cross-cultural contact that reveals the true depths of interaction across the Asian continent that began long before European arrival and continues today.

“East-Southeast” seeks to reorient the compass of global art history by considering intra-Asian artistic exchange during the long eighteenth century. Articles should address some area of art resulting from contact between the Asian non-west, stretching from Western Asia across Central Asia to East Asia, and down through South Asia and Southeast Asia.

Issue Editor
Kristina Kleutghen, Washington University in St. Louis

Submissions for issue #4 East-Southeast are now closed.


#5 COORDINATES (Spring 2018)

Digital Mapping & 18th-century Visual, Material, and Built Cultures

Art history’s digital turn has been stimulated by the possibilities of spatial research.  Spurred by the collection, preservation, and distribution of art historical data in digital space—practices that have both collapsed and expanded our own discursive geographies—scholars have exploited the potential of geospatial analysis for art historical study. These new methods are particularly promising for the study of the early modern world, which has been fruitfully understood through the prisms of connections and exchanges that crossed world regions and defied the boundaries drawn on static maps. Digital mapping platforms and applications like CartoDB, Neatline, ArcGIS, Leaflet, and MapBox have made it possible, for example, to visualize the movement of people, such as artists, through temporal and geographic space, thus allowing us to reimagine personal and material contacts in tangible ways. Moreover, the dynamic lives of mobile and fungible objects can be displayed in extended and often circuitous trajectories, thus encouraging the kind of nonlinear visual analysis that is foundational to the practice of art history. Georectification tools have further facilitated the reconciliation of historical figurations of space with contemporary visualizations, which allows competing spatial narratives to coexist productively in a digital realm, while also challenging the magisterial view offered by modern cartography.

In this issue of Journal18, we seek to feature current scholarship that relies on the analytical power provided by digital mapping interfaces for the study of visual, material, and built cultures during the long eighteenth century. How do digital humanities methods and tools shape our understanding of space and place in the early modern period? What impact might digital mapping have on our historical investigations of people, objects, and their environments? Submissions may take the form of an article (up to 6000 words) or a project presented through a digital platform that takes full advantage of Journal18’s online format. We also welcome proposals for shorter vignettes (around 2,500 words) that reflect on projects in progress or consider the potential for particular mapping methodologies for eighteenth-century art history.

Issue Editors
Carrie Anderson, Middlebury College
Nancy Um, Binghamton University

Submissions for issue #5 Coordinates are now closed.


#6 ALBUMS (Fall 2018)

The Culture of Albums in the Long 18th Century

Selecting, collecting, classifying, curating, displaying, narrating, disseminating, transporting, entertaining, educating, subverting: what other single object does all of that at once? Ordering knowledge through the rationale of a sequenced and empirical display of data (visual, textual, material), the album became an archetypical site of the eighteenth century’s way of thinking about and representing the world. Neither a treatise implementing a master-hypothesis nor a random gathering of material, albums can be described as both hybrid and structured objects. They have the physical structure of a book and the appearance of a narrative but are also pure displays, a rhetorical organization of iconic discourses and a virtual folding or unfolding of a larger idea having a specific program. They simultaneously contain pictorial imagery (paintings, cut-ups, and, later in the nineteenth century, photographs) and are themselves artistic creations. They provide microcosmic and portable representations of a polity, a culture or an individual. Unexpected mixtures of media and topics also form the repertoire of many albums. They invite us to think through regimes of readability, visibility and seriality. Often studied for their contents rather than as creations in their own right, albums raise many important questions regarding their status as archival or museum objects. Their contrived nature makes them ideal objects to be studied in terms of social practice, identity politics and interconnectedness. They invoke relationships, compositions and collectivity. The album offers a very fertile ground for probing the material and intellectual productivity of cultures.

What does album-making tell us about cultural and individual identities? And how do these identities utilize and make sense of this specific practice? How do albums work iconographically and textually? What is their historical significance and how can we interpret them? For Issue 6 of Journal18, we invite papers that explore these and related questions to appraise this hitherto neglected object of our discipline. In particular we call for an investigation of parallel developments of albums around the globe across the long 18th Century (1650-1850), as well as the theoretical debates informing notions of serialization and authenticity. Drawing upon neighboring fields of anthropology, literary criticism, philosophy and museum studies, we invite scholars to think about these objects as ubiquitous and intimately interconnected artefacts, and to investigate them within cultures of imperialism, colonialism, identity politics and theoretical approaches of artistic hybridity and difference.

Issue Editor
Nebahat Avcioglu, Hunter College/CUNY

Proposals for issue #6 Albums are now being accepted. Deadline for proposals: October 1, 2017.

To submit a proposal, send an abstract (200 words) and a brief CV to editor@journal18.org and navciogl@hunter.cuny.edu. Articles should not exceed 6000 words (including footnotes) and will be due on April 1, 2018. For further details on the submission process see Information for Authors.