Chapter proposals are welcomed for an edited volume on contemporary art and addiction. Chapters will examine artworks in a range of media from 1960 to the present and can consider art produced in any geographical context. The working title for this volume is Relentless Seeking: Contemporary Art and Addiction in Global Contexts. The phrase ‘relentless seeking’ refers not only to the embodied experience of drug and alcohol addiction that involves movement through spaces and places in order to seek out alcohol and/or drugs, but also to the manifold kinds of ‘seeking’ that characterize artistic production and life as a contemporary artist (creative, imaginative seeking and financial seeking, for example). Potential contributors may wish to approach their proposals in terms of this analytical framework, but it is not necessary that they do so. There has been shockingly little written about visual culture and addiction, despite the historical relationship between visuality and addiction that is based on the belief that addiction is legible from both the body and visual images. One of the few texts concerned with contemporary art and addiction is David Hopkins’s essay “Out of It” (2004), examines Gillian Wearing’s video Drunk. Contributors may wish to refer to Hopkins’s essay as a jumping off point. Considering the ongoing visualization of addicted individuals in a range of contemporary media there is an urgent need for scholars from various disciplines to critically examine visual representations of addiction. Relentless Seeking will contribute to this burgeoning field of analysis by looking specifically at how contemporary artists have represented addicted persons and/or responded to, re-entrenched or problematized discourses of addiction. Contributors may also discuss artists who were addicted and how their addictions impacted the production and/or reception of their work. Proposals attentive to the intersections between discourses of addiction and discourses related to gender, sexuality, class and race are particularly welcome, as are proposals that employ innovative methodological and theoretical approaches to the visual culture of addiction.
The deadline for abstracts (max. 500 words) is August 1, 2013. The deadline for chapters will be February 1, 2014. Please send abstracts and CVs to Dr. Julia Skelly (email@example.com).
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