CFP: Seventh Graduate Workshop of the Russian Art and Culture Group, Bremen

Ludmila Piters-Hofmann's picture

CFP: What Is to Be Done? - Discussions in Russian Art Theory and Criticism II

Seventh Graduate Workshop of the Russian Art and Culture Group

Jacobs University Bremen, September 19–20, 2019


Guest Speaker: Jane Ashton Sharp, professor at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey


Language: English


Deadline for submission: May 31, 2019


The  seventh graduate workshop of the Russian Art and Culture Group will focus on the main tendencies in Russian art theory from Russian modernism to the present day. We want to specifically explore responses to the question What Is to Be Done? (Что делать?) by artists, art critics, writers, and other members of the Russian intelligentsia. Furthermore, we wish to discuss art historical concepts such as, for example, the Russian avant-garde, neo-primitivism, constructivism, formalism, Socialist Realism, conceptualism, Sots Art, and how these were used by Russian artists. We also want to examine how movements and concepts from abroad, including cubism, the Bauhaus, concept art, pop art, and others, were mirrored in Russian art theory and artistic practice, and vice versa.


Topics might include:

  • the goals and methods of official and unofficial art schools and artistic movements (e.g. Vkhutemas, Moscow Conceptualists, Sots Art, etc.)
  • the impact of revolution, war, and social changes upon artistic thought and production
  • reactions to Western aesthetic and philosophical ideas and artistic concepts
  • the shaping of the image of Russian art beyond Russia (Lissitzky, Kabakov, etc.)
  • the role of museums in the preservation and presentation of art
  • the emergence of Soviet cultural institutions and their functions
  • the role of art critics in public and artistic debates


We invite doctoral students, postgraduate researchers, and established academics to submit proposals for 20-minute presentations. Interdisciplinary approaches are very welcome. Please send an abstract of no more than 250 words along with a short biographical note of 100 words by May 31, 2019 to


For further questions, please do not hesitate to contact the organizers using the email address above. You will receive notification of the acceptance of paper proposals by mid-June 2019.


Please understand that travel expanses cannot be reimbursed by the organizers.


Initial idea and organization: Prof. Dr. Isabel Wünsche, Jacobs University Bremen, Ludmila Piters-Hofmann and Miriam Leimer.