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Fictions of Art History

October 29–30, 2010

This conference, convened by Mark Ledbury and Michael Hatt, addressed the complex relationship between art history and fiction, a relationship that will be investigated in art historians’ need to tell stories, their viewing practices, their rhetoric, their writing, and in the interest of art historical work beyond the academy.

Participants included:
Paul Barolsky, University of Virginia; Gregory Crewdson, Yale University; Thomas Crow, New York University; Dario Gamboni, Université de Genève; Michèle Hannoosh, University of Michigan; Michael Hatt, University of Warwick; Robin Kelsey, Harvard University; Gloria Kury, Gutenberg Periscope Publishing; Mark Ledbury, Power Institute, University of Sydney; Ralph Lieberman, Independent Scholar; Maria Loh, University College London; Hélène Bonafous-Murat, Compagnie Nationale des Experts; Alexander Nemerov, Yale University; Joanna Scott, University of Rochester; Allan Sekula, California Institute of the Arts; Susan Siegfried, University of Michigan; Edward Snow, Rice University; Cole Swensen, University of Iowa; Marianna Torgovnick, Duke University; Caroline Vout, University of Cambridge; Marina Warner, University of Essex

In order of discussion

Ways of Writing
Moderator: Michèle Hannoosh

The Scholar Writes
Alexander Nemerov

Fictional Deception: A True Story
Joanna Scott

Poetry as Art History as Poetry
Cole Swensen

Portraits and Fictions
Moderator: Dario Gamboni

Face to Face with Fiction: Portraiture and the Biographical Tradition
Caroline Vout

I Am Not Who You Think I Am’: Identifying the Humanist Portrait, Attributing the Humanist Subject
Maria Loh

Artists’ Fictions
Moderator: Aruna D’Souza

The Text is Present
Marianna Torgovnick

Gordon Burn’s Alma Cogan and the moment of the Young British Artists
Thomas Crow

Fictions and/of Evidence
Moderator: Michael Holly

’Everything You Need to Know of the Orient…’: Reading the Arabian Nights
Marina Warner

Philip Marlowe Meets the Art Historian
Paul Barolsky

Watching the Detectives
Moderator: Susan Siegfried

The Case of the Errant Art Historian
Gloria Kury

Interweaving Art and Fiction: The Subtle Art of the Print Expert Turned Novelist
Hélène Bonafous-Murat

Photography and Its Fictions
Moderator: Robin Kelsey

The Illusion of Objectivity: Photographs as Art Historical ‘Evidence’
Ralph Lieberman

Artist’s Talk with Gregory Crewdson
Gregory Crewdson

Conference Response and Commentary
Edward Snow

Click here to download full program.