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Conflict and/in Design: Renaissance Design and Responses to a Turbulent World

Posted By Charles Burroughs, Friday, April 14, 2017

Session sponsored by the Association for Textual Study in Art History (ATSAH) at the 2018 Annual Meeting of the Renaissance Society of America (RSA) in New Orleans, March 22–24.

Title: “Conflict and/in Design: Renaissance Design and Responses to a Turbulent World.”

The relationship between design and the often-perilous world inhabited by designers (as well as patrons) has been an important theme in the historiography of art and architecture in the long Renaissance. While some scholars have explored possible links between the solecisms and experimentation of mannerism and social, political and religious changes, other historians have downplayed or even discounted such notions, as indeed did the theorists of the period itself.

The organizers of this session invite submissions addressing those latent fault-lines, symptoms of which can be identified in the visual arts and architecture. What can be learned about those tacit tensions from the way artists (and designers) negotiated and explored their representational content? How and in what circumstances did the general acceptance of classical models and frameworks accommodate or even foster hetero-normative responses? This focus may not only reveal little known relationships that existed between the dominant narratives, new ideas, and suppressed traditions across different fields of artistic production but may also help to advance the understanding of those disruptive forces that prompted the emergence of the modern era.

Proposals should include the author’s name, professional affiliation, and contact information; the paper’s title; a brief abstract (150 words or less); keywords; and a brief curriculum vitae (300 words maximum). Send proposals to Andrzej Piotrowski ( and Charles Burroughs ( by May 15.

Tags:  design  negotiation  patronage  representation  tension 

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