Call for Papers

Natural Dialogues: Art, Science and Material Culture
Graduate Student Symposium, Yale Center for British Art, New Haven, CT
Saturday, February 21, 2009, 9am-6:30 pm
Keynote Lecture 5:30 pm
This one-day graduate student symposium focuses on intersections where art and science meet.
2009 will witness a number of major events to mark the bicentenary of Charles Darwin’s birth and the 150th anniversary of the publication of On the Origin of Species. One of these is an exhibition organized by the Fitzwilliam Museum in association with the Yale Center for British Art, entitled “Endless Forms”: Charles Darwin, Natural Science, and the Visual Arts. This symposium takes part in these conversations by exploring multiple ways in which art overlaps with science in a broader context, considering a range of historical periods and cultures.

We seek to focus the discussion through the close study of objects. To this end, the program will include material study sessions in exhibitions and collections at Yale University.
Topics may include but are not restricted to:
• networks of artists and scientists
• artist/scientist collaborations
• art and the natural world
• the philosophical concept of the sublime
• theology, art, and science
• the influence of scientific discoveries on
the arts
• artistic and scientific approaches to
• dialogues between art and science in the
• art, science, and education
• science museum displays
• scientific illustration
• travel accounts
• art and exploration
• amateur practice
• photography as science or art
• artistic and scientific concepts of truth
We invite proposals for 25-minute papers on this theme from graduate students across the arts and sciences. Special consideration will be given to papers examining the topic in relation to British art and culture. Cross-disciplinary and comparative studies are particularly welcome.
Please submit abstracts of no more than 300 words by October 14, 2008.
by email:
by mail: Imogen Hart
Research Department
Yale Center for British Art
P.O. Box 208280
New Haven, CT 06520-8280
Travel funds for speakers are available upon application. Support for this symposium has been generously provided by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.