Histories of Art History in South East Asia
March 21 – 23, 2013, Manila, Philippines
This two-day colloquium was convened by Patrick Flores, University of the Philippines-Diliman and hosted by the University of the Philippines, Manila, in partnership with the Research and Academic Program at the Clark. From the discussions in Sydney, a series of questions emerged around themes of anti/post-colonial scholarship and comparative historiography in art, as well as how national, international, and activist interests and responses have shaped the arts and humanities. In this intellectual event, scholars, curators, and local researchers were invited to deepen our initial investigation.
Sabih Ahmad, Asia Art Archive; Frederick Asher, University of Minnesota; Biljana Ciric, Independent Curator; John Clark, Australian National University; Shelly Errington, University of California, Santa Cruz; Patrick Flores, University of the Philippines-Diliman; Ahmad Bin Mashadi, National University of Singapore Museum; Partha Mitter, University of Sussex; Apinan Posyananda, Thailand Ministry of Culture, Department of Cultural Relations; Seng Yu Jin, LASALLE College of the Arts; Nora Taylor, School of the Art Institute of Chicago
- How were ideas of identity (native, national, nationalist) and modernity (colonial, cosmopolitan, critical) interpreted and understood in the history of art? To what purposes were those used?
- In what different ways were ideas of “art” and “history” received?
- How has the field of art history been called into question?
- Do comparative historiographies that draw attention to similar theoretical problems, affinities of context, and unpredictable interactions offer a good approach to the issues?
- What are some of the other approaches, intellectual trends, and critical positions that have been constructed over the last twenty years in this part of the world?
- How have these developments shaped the pedagogy of art history as a particular post-colonial discipline and within larger frames such as the humanities/liberal arts, cultural studies, and area/regional/interdisciplinary studies
- What impact have legacies of anti-colonial movements exerted on thinking about the arts and the aesthetic? What critical possibilities does the case of the Bandung paradigm of non-alignment and decolonization, for example, offer for reconceptualizing modernity and contemporaneity?
- What roles do space, image, and medium play in the process of writing the history of art so that practices like architecture and photography are able to reference diverse origins and mutations of the aesthetic and its integration within the category of art?