Conference Announcements & Call for Papers

Call for Papers: Special issue of Southern Cultures: Art

Guest Editor: Teka Selman

Southern Cultures, the award-winning,
peer-reviewed quarterly from UNC’s Center for the Study of the American South,
encourages submissions from scholars, writers, and artists for this special
issue, to be published Summer 2020. We will be accepting submissions for this special
issue through September 16, 2019, at .

We are seeking words and work that examine artistic expression in
and about the South—the mediums, methods, and narratives that inform our
perceptions of and desires for the region. What is the role of creativity in
picturing the past, present, and future of a multifaceted region that has many
times reinvented itself, that is ever-evolving? 

The South has played a pivotal role in the making of American
culture, whether in the form of blues and jazz and literature and culinary
arts, or through the lasting and devastating aftereffects of slavery and
segregation. What does it mean to make work in a place that is both reviled and
revered? How have artists living in the South taken up the challenges of
creating in a region whose visual output rarely receives the same level of
attention and acclaim as the Northeast and West Coasts? What do artistic
communities in the South look like? Could it be true that there is such a thing
as “southern art” and, if not, how do visual artists from or working in the
South complicate that notion? Who are the makers pushing forward new narratives
and ideas across the region, and what do they have to say?

The art we create reveals attitudes about what the South is and
means (or what we wish it were and meant). It can likewise act as an agent of
understanding and debate, capable of fostering both empathy and chaos. We
will explore the many complex ways that the visual arts frame the South; and
how attitudes and ideas about the region manifest across a variety of media,
styles, and expressions. In gathering and interpreting the art that southerners
have created and are creating, this issue seeks to explore visions of the South
that begin to imagine its pivotal role in an uncertain future.

Submissions can explore any topic or theme related to visual
expression in the South, and we welcome explorations of the region in the forms
Southern Cultures publishes: scholarly articles, memoir, interviews,
surveys, photo essays, and shorter feature essays. We hope that submitters will
interpret the idea of the visual South broadly.

Possible topics and questions to explore might include (but are certainly
not limited to):

act of envisioning a future through visual art

  • Explorations of art and the archive
  • The diversity, complexity, and competing perceptions of southern experience
  • Art and protest in the South
  • The intersection of visual art and spirituality
  • Transmutations, or art as an alchemic practice
  • Histories of visual representation in and of the South
  • Southern constellations: explorations of artistic centers and communities in the South
  • Southern artistic influence outside of the region

As we also publish a digital edition, we are able to supplement
print materials with video, audio, and interactive visual content. We encourage
creativity in coordinating print and digital materials in submissions and ask
that authors submit any potential digital materials with their essay or
introduction/artist’s statement.

We encourage authors to gain familiarity with the tone, scope, and
style of our journal before submitting. Those whose institutions subscribe to
Project Muse can read past issues for free via . To
read our current issue, access our submission guidelines, or browse our
content, please visit us online at

CFP: Bahia’s Visual Culture in the Twenty-First Century

Brazilian Studies Association Conference (BRASA), March 26-28, 2020, University of Texas at Austin

Panel Title: Bahia’s Visual Culture in the Twenty-First Century

Bahia has always held a special place in Brazil’s cultural imagination. Many individuals, both native-born and foreigners, have been attracted to the region for its unique cultural heritage and have played a hand in representing Bahia’s visual culture on the domestic and international stages. Now almost two decades into the twenty-first century, scholars and artists are reflecting on some of the cultural figures (Pierre Verger, Carybé, the Baiana) and practices (Carnaval, Capoeira, Candomblé), many of which earned Bahia national and international attention in the twentieth century, with a more critical eye. What quintessential visual representations of Bahia should be re-examined or challenged? How are contemporary artists representing their “Bahianness” in new ways? How have tourism, the 2016 Summer Olympics, and national politics affected Bahia’s visual culture? How have national and international exhibitions approached the representation of Bahian art and culture in the twenty-first century? How have individuals from Bahia, as well as from other areas of Brazil and the world, used Bahia’s visual culture for their own aesthetic and political interests?

This panel can accommodate a variety of papers from different fields that offer original and/or revisionist examinations of Bahia’s visual culture from a twenty-first century viewpoint.

If interested, please contact: Kimberly Cleveland ( and send the following no later than August 19, 2019.

  1.             Paper title and abstract (not to exceed 200 words)
  2.             A brief bio (not to exceed 80 words)

All accepted participants must pay the BRASA membership and conference registration. BRASA Participants are limited to one paper per congress, no exceptions.Contact Info: 

Kimberly ClevelandContact Email: kcleveland@gsu.eduURL:

From Sensiotics to Mamiwata: Essays in Honor of Henry Drewal 

Henry Drewal, one of the most imaginative intellectuals ever to reflect on the subject of African art, has an incomparably wide scholarly span covering Africa and its diasporas in North America, South America, Caribbean, and most recently in India. His career took off in the mid-sixties when, as a Peace Corps member, he apprenticed himself to two Yoruba sculptors in the Egba and Egbado regions of Western Nigeria. The fruit of that apprenticeship includes a definitive book on the subject of Gẹ̀lẹ̀dẹ́ art, and many sculptures that still perform in indigenous Gelede festivals in Nigeria. Since that time, Drewal has distinguished himself as a prolific and perceptive scholar, editor, curator, teacher, conference organizer, mentor and art catalyst who has collaborated with leading writers on African art.
 The author of numerous monographs, edited books, exhibition catalogs, videos, essays and art exhibitions, Drewal’s interests cover theory, criticism, connoisseurship, performance art, photography, installations and linguistics. He has trained prominent scholars teaching at several universities and colleges in North America; has produced curators working at several museums and galleries; and has studied, promoted and influenced numerous African and African diaspora artists, ranging from indigenous to contemporary creative spirits including Lamidi Fakeye, Michael Harris, Abdias Nascimento, and Moyo Ogundipe. From the Oyotunji Village in South Carolina to the Afro-Brazilian studios of South America, Drewal has crossed over to the little-studied black diasporas in India to organize workshops with women quilt makers and bring attention to their creative practices. One of the earliest scholars in the field of African art to pay attention to the hand of the individual artist, Drewal has immersed himself in the study of African art from the aesthetic, religious, sociological, and etymological dimensions, from which he has gifted the world reflections on the Mamiwata iconology, Ifa iconography, and sensiotic theorizing, among numerous ideas.
 This Call for Papers is an invitation to scholars in all fields of African studies to contribute articles (essays, interviews, reflections, images) on any discipline to a multi-disciplinary book celebrating Drewal’s influence on the scholarship of African art. The deadline for submission of final materials is January 30, 2020, while the provision of titles and abstracts is due on October 30, 2019.
Please email a title and an abstract of no longer than 200 words to Moyo Okediji, Department of Art and Art History, University of Texas, Austin, by the October deadline for full consideration.  The entire essay should be no longer than 8,000 words, using the Chicago Manual of style. Short contributions are welcome. Images should have permissions to be included. The email address for all submissions is  Contact Info: Moyo Okediji, Department of Art and Art History, University of Texas, AustinContact Email:

Call for Chapters: The Wakandan Civitas and its Panthering Futurity

Vernon Press invites chapter proposals on African History. All areas of study, including disciplines such as Black History Race Studies and Women’s& Gender History, among others, are invited to submit.

Black Panther envisions ‘Afrotopic’ advancement; in other words, it imagines an Afrocentric utopia. This call invites examinations of black civilization as portrayed in various literary forms (novels, graphic novels, films etc). Discussions will be centered around representation of Africa and the African diaspora.

The volume will take its inspiration from the cultural phenomenon of and surrounding Black Panther to reflect on the existence of a ‘Panthering effect’, i.e. an African past and present reevaluated or reconceptualized in view of an ameliorative futurity.

This call welcomes scholarly papers on, but not limited to:

  • Africana Studies or any related discipline
  • Utopic or dystopic representations of Africa
  • Theoretical enquiry about the African continent and/or diaspora
  • Examination of traditionalized ‘gazes’ and othering motifs
  • Symbolisms and tropes of and about Africa
  • Nationalism, separatism, classism, and any other ‘isms’

Deadline for proposals: September 12019

Deadline for first drafts: February 12020

How to submit your proposal

Please submit one-page proposals (200 words aprox.) including an annotated summary and a short biographical note.

For further questions or to submit your proposal, you can email Jorge Serrano (

A paper that has been published previously may not be included.

Selected abstracts will be notified by the end of September 2019, and full chapters should be submitted by February 1, 2020. Complete chapter lengths should be between 6000-7000 words.

Selected papers (subject to double blind peer review) may appear in an edited volume with Vernon Press. Vernon Press is an independent publisher of scholarly books in the social sciences and humanities. We work closely with authors, academic associations, distributors and library information specialists to identify and develop high quality, high impact titles.