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CFP: Process: In Media Res

Process: In Medias Res

Harvard Film and Visual Studies

Inaugural Graduate Conference

April 10-12, 2014

An artist’s process; a writer’s process; the process of observing; a word processor; processing a negative; a research process; the process of mediation.

Process asks us to think about how in addition to what, about working objects as well as finished works. It is a point in medias res, in formation, in-between. Media, mediation, and medium are all terms of process, machines of facture and sense-making.

This conference takes Process as its area of inquiry. Conceptions of Process, as well as particular processes, situate themselves at the heart of various disciplinary ‘turns,’ methodological shifts, and inter- and intra-disciplinary debates within academic approaches to media, the visual and other aesthetic fields. In proposing the need for further conceptualization of the term we hope to draw together interdisciplinary research accounting for the processual and the various meanings, uses, and roles it holds, and has held, for media scholarship and practice.

We seek explorations of the processual in critical and creative practice that draw from Visual Studies, Film and Media Studies, History of Science, History of Art, as well as practice-based disciplines. Can we approach process as figure rather than ground? How do we address processes of artistic practice? What constrains our attempts to render process into language and image, sound and sense? Can we, or should we, historicize or theorize process? What are the possibilities or pitfalls of rendering process into representation or performance? Do theories of visuality, medium, embodiment, and form demand or suggest new models for conceptualizing or representing process? How does process complicate the discursive fault lines between theory and practice?

We invite proposals for scholarly papers, audiovisual presentations, exploratory writing, and performances that engage with, as well as extend beyond, the following topics:

“Process” in/as/and:

– Scholarship, both research and writing

– Practice-based/Artistic Research

– Digital Humanities/Pedagogy

– (Inter-/Trans-)Disciplinarity

– Media Archaeological Approaches

– Forms of Production/Facture within and across Art, Film, Media

– Avant-garde/Experimental Film and Media Scholarship

– “Process” Art: Event, Performance, Experience

– Counterfactual Histories/Parafiction/Falsities/Re-enactments

– Archiving, Collecting, Historicizing, Curating

– Reproduction, Transformation, and Technological Mediation

– Materiality, Objects in Flux

– Documentary and Visual Ethnography

– Process Philosophy and its Role in Media Scholarship

– Media Epistemology

– Temporality: Slow and Fast Processes

– ‘Live’ Media

– Failure and Abandoned Projects/Practices

– Work/Labor

– Invisibility: Clandestine Technologies for Capture and Communication

– Proprietary Knowledge and Secret Processes

Opening Remarks:

Giuliana Bruno, Professor of Visual and Environmental Studies, Harvard University

in conjunction with the international book launch of Surface: Matters of Aesthetics, Materiality, and Media

Keynote speaker and Screening Event: to be announced

Please send an abstract of 250-300 words and short bio along with institutional/departmental affiliation, if any, to by Jan 15, 2014.  Questions can be directed to the email address above.  Participants will be notified of acceptance by mid February. 

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