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DemCP colloquium - KATHRYN ROBERTS (Groningen): " On the U.S. Origins of European Artist Residencies" | CAMILLA SUTHERLAND (Groningen): "Transnational Turn: Reconsidering Latin American Women Modernists"

When:We 11-12-2019 16:00 - 18:00
Where:Room 1315.0043, Harmonie building

Kathryn Roberts (University of Groningen) On the U.S. Origins of European Artist Residences

Since the 1990s, residency programs have become a central institution by which artists and writers sustain a career—providing time, space, and social support for creative practice—and yet they have attracted minimal attention from scholars. This paper frames the artist residency within the larger story of how American nonprofit culture has been exported abroad, with Europe as an area of focus.

While art colonies have a long and illustrious European history, their modern form—the non-profit organization with board, endowment, and other administrative apparatus—is overwhelmingly an American phenomenon. Artist residencies like Yaddo and the MacDowell Colony originated in the early twentieth-century United States: where Gilded Age private art patronage met Progressive-era ideology and modernist social and artistic experimentation. They were an innovative way of supporting artists in a country that had no tradition of church, court, or state patronage; and they shaped the social and aesthetic preoccupations of American literature.

In Europe today, American-style residencies have become a strategy for supporting artists through a system of formalized networks and competitive grants: part of the bureaucratic-cultural enterprise known formally as Creative Europe.

If American art and literary culture are any guide, then the institution of the residency will shape creative practice and ideology in profound ways. Thus the economic, social, and aesthetic implications of residency culture become urgent questions for Europe: is the residency a vital form of utopian association? Or a capitulation to globalization the neoliberal dismantling of public life? A transatlantic and historically-informed American Studies perspective offers a powerful way of understanding (and critiquing) current cultural policy regimes.

Camilla Sutherland (University of Groningen)
Transnational Turn: Reconsidering Latin American Women Modernists

This talk will introduce a book project I am completing entitled The Space of Latin American Women Modernists. The book positions eight Latin American women within the broader narrative of literary and artistic Modernism from which they have for the most part remained absent. My work examines women practitioners’ responses to the distinct (gendered) spatiality of Latin American modernity, but what I additionally wish to highlight is the extent to which epistemological categories and disciplinary norms are also themselves founded upon spatial hierarchies. Offering a broad introduction to the “transnational turn” within Modernist Studies, this talk will explore the disruption of disciplinary borders and broader implications evoked when we speak of Latin American Modernism.

Camilla Sutherland (Ph.D., University College London) is Assistant Professor in the Department of European Languages & Cultures and Co-Director of the Center of Mexico Studies at the University of Groningen. Her research focuses on gender and Latin American modernism. She has most recently acted as editor of the Latin American section of Global Modernists on Modernism: An Anthology (Bloomsbury; forthcoming 2020), and has contributed to The Oxford Critical and Cultural History of Global Modernist Magazines, (Oxford University Press, forthcoming 2020).