CFP: Radical Archives Conference at NYU

NYU, Friday, April 11-Saturday, April 12, 2014

Call for proposals for panels, papers, and performances

Deadline extended: Monday, January 20, 2014

Radical Archives is a two-day conference organized around the notion of archiving as a radical practice. An international contingent of archivists, artists, artist-archivists, activist archivists, theorists and scholars working within a range of archives and archival practices will be invited to present and discuss archives of radical politics and practices; archives that are radical / experimental in form or function; how archiving in itself might be a radical act in certain moments or contexts; and how archives can be active in the present, as well as documents of the past or scripts for the future.

The conference will be organized around four major themes, include a number of presentation formats, and be supplemented by / documented through an online catalogue. We are calling for contributions relevant to these themes. Proposed formats could include panels, roundtables, individual papers or artist talks, performances or performance-lectures, screenings, interactive screen-based projects or live participatory projects.

Archive and Affect

Possible topics could include, but are not limited to: embodied / performed archives; archive and repertory; buildings as archives; oral and informal histories; private versus public archives, and transitions between those states; warm versus cold data

Archiving Around Absence

Possible topics could include, but are not limited to: disappearing archives; deliberately destroyed archives; inadvertently preserved archives, or unofficial histories within official histories; reading for the shadows; strategies of resistant or counter-archiving

Archives and Ethics

Possible topics could include, but are not limited to: stealing from archives; stealing as the foundation of archives; strategies of refusal or resistance to archiving; ownership of archived testimonies; intellectual property versus intellectual propriety; the afterlives of archives designed for specific purposes, e.g. archives of protests, activist movements, and human rights initiatives; the ethics of open access; FOIA and its discontents

Archive as Constellation

Possible topics could include, but are not limited to: archive as method; the artist’s archive; the expanded archival field or notion of the archive; linking of archives across networks; film as archive; subversive or experimental uses of metadata, cataloguing and classification; archive and database, database and interface; how standards and interfaces shape our understanding of collections and the information they contain

To propose a paper or panel, please send an abstract (max 1 paragraph per paper) and brief speaker bios.
To propose a contribution in another format, please send a 1-page description of content & form and up to 3 pages of relevant images/links.
Please send your proposal as a text, rich text, or PDF file to
Proposals due Monday, January 20, 2014

If you have any questions about proposal/contribution format or topic, send us an email.

Index of the Disappeared (Mariam Ghani & Chitra Ganesh)

The conference is presented by the Asian/Pacific/American Institute at NYU, where Ghani and Ganesh are the 2013-2014 Artists-in-Residence, and co-sponsored by the NYU Archives & Public History program.

Please contact Amita Manghnani at A/P/A if you are interested in co-sponsoring:


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