Call for Papers: 43rd Annual Cleveland Symposium - Ars et Scientia: Intersections of Science and the Visual Arts

June 16, 2017


Innovative research papers from graduate students of all disciplines that challenge the divide between humanities and STEM fields are welcomed. Papers may explore aspects of this topic across any time period, medium, or geographical region.


Despite the semantic divide that seems to separate art and science in modern culture, the boundaries between the two disciplines have always been fluid and permeable. From the earliest recorded botanical illustrations, painted on papyrus scrolls in Egypt in the 2nd century AD, to contemporary artist Josh Kline’s use of 3D printing in his work, art and science have long been used in tandem to make sense of the world and explore our place within it. The working notes of printers like Louis-Marin Bonnet as they experimented with the technique of chalk-manner engraving resemble nothing so much as a scientist recording data and observations for his experiments. Representations of the scientist at work in his laboratory also abound, from Pieter Bruegel’s Alchemist to Joseph Wright of Derby’s An Experiment on a Bird in the Air Pump, and serve as social commentaries on the role of the scientist in society. More recently, scientific technologies have proven to be invaluable tools for the modern art historian and museum curator, allowing us to better understand artists’ working methods and materials through the use of imaging technology and chemical analysis. This symposium seeks to foster a re-examination of the complex interactions between artistic and scientific disciplines that are more interdependent than they first appear.

Selected participants will be notified by early August. Paper presentations will be 20 minutes in length, and participants will be invited to author a blog post about their research to be published on the symposium's Tumblr


For consideration, please submit a 350-word abstract and CV to [email protected] by July 16, 2017. Please direct all questions to Aimee Caya and Erin Hein at [email protected].