Open to current CDA students – Call for Papers: Histories of Collections and Institutions CDP Colloquium May 19th

Call for Papers: Histories of Collections and Institutions CDP Colloquium

A one-day symposium for current CDP students to share research related to the histories of institutional collecting. Friday 19 May 2017, National Gallery, Trafalgar Square, London WC2N 5DN

In the last fifty years, the flourishing discipline of the history of collecting has been approached from many angles. Among these, the evolution of institutional collections in Britain in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries has been a subject of particular study, with important publications by scholars including Clive Wainwright, Kate Hill, Susanna Avery-Quash, Chris Gosden and Frances Larson among many others. The AHRC Collaborative Doctoral Partnership scheme has brought doctoral researchers into close proximity with national collections and their histories, as such creating a new generation of scholars working on institutional collecting histories, inter-institutional networks, and the wider social, political and cultural contexts in which museums operate.

Though previous conferences have focussed on certain types of object, individual collections or type of collector, there have been few recent opportunities to compare and connect institutional collecting histories and to discuss the unique possibilities and challenges that such research presents. Current CDP students are invited to explore the wider relevance of their research outcomes and to situate individual collecting histories within broader regional and national contexts. With keynotes from Dr. Dora Thornton (British Museum) and Dr. Claire Wintle (University of Brighton), this event is intended as a forum for CDP researchers to present buy isotretinoin 10mg current research and to network with colleagues working in similar fields across the UK. Applicants are encouraged to consider a wide range of methodologies and subjects in their approach. Some possible areas might include:

  • Institutional approaches: What common/overarching factors shaped institutional collecting priorities in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries? How did these priorities vary across institutions?
  • Collecting practices: What processes were employed for the acquisition, research and exhibition of objects and how did these evolve?
  • Collecting contexts: How can we situate collecting priorities within wider social, political and cultural trends? To what extent did the concept of collecting ‘for the nation’ shape the nature of collections and how was this defined? How did concepts of national identity, the rise of the nation state and the expansion of empire feature in these histories? How do smaller, regional and more specialist institutions fit with this concept?
  • Institutional networks: How did networks between institutions shape the nature of public collections, and how did these networks spread? How far can we separate institutional networks and motivations from those of individual curators and keepers?
  • Methodologies & Resources: What historiographical and methodological approaches have been employed in researching collecting histories? How are these methods and approaches shaped by partner institutions and the availability of archives?

Please send 250-word proposals for 20 minute papers and CVs to Alison Bennet, Eloise Donnelly & Imogen Tedbury – for their email contact please contact

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