Art Histories and Aesthetic Practices.
Kunstgeschichte und ästhetische Praktiken

A research and fellowship program initiated by the Kunsthistorisches Institut in Florenz at the Forum Transregionale Studien in Berlin

Art Histories and Aesthetic Practices. Kunstgeschichte und ästhetische Praktiken is a Berlin based research and fellowship program which questions and transcends traditional disciplinary boundaries in a transcultural, global horizon. By creating a space of dialogue for scholars from all continents, it discusses the potential and contours of a plural history of art.

The program invites annually up to ten scholars (postdoc) from Islamic, Asian, African, Australian, European art histories and those of the Americas and is also addressing neighboring disciplines such as archaeology, anthropology and other fields dealing with the history of visual cultures. Art Histories and Aesthetic Practices analyses the connectivity of larger historical spaces and investigates artistic phenomena in a comparative approach, experimenting with new methodologies and forms of collaborative research. The concept of "aesthetic practices", introduced by the program, is an invitation to study artifacts with their biographies as well as processes of transfer and transformation in a transcultural, postcolonial and global perspective. This includes the dynamics of the production and perception of things, images and architectures from the time of their creation to their subsequent apprehensions up to the present, also including their display, storage, oppression, reworking or destruction.

With the study of "aesthetic practices", the program engages with sociological, gender specific, historical, legal, religious, technical, philological, linguistic, geographical, ecological questions or dimensions as well as those regarding the history of knowledge. It allows to understand artifacts as actors or participants in specific social and cultural dynamics. Art Histories and Aesthetic Practices is structured along four thematic lines: 1. Materiality and Techniques; 2. Mobility, Transfer and Translation; 3. Narratives and Display; 4. Site, Space and Environment. It thus aims to overcome the dichotomy of formal versus contextual approaches towards artifacts or constellations of objects. At the same time it promotes the concept of an art-historical ecology and embraces museum studies. Art Histories and Aesthetic Practices has no chronological or geographical constraints. Its scholarly environment is designed to enable and encourage both fellows and the wider community to experiment and refine transregional approaches to the history of visual cultures and aesthetic practices. The Berlin based program is designed as means of intensive collaboration between art historical and research institutions dealing with transcultural questions, in particular in the horizon of the debates accompanying the project of the Humboldt Forum. Among the facilities in Berlin Art Histories and Aesthetic Practices primarily cooperates with the Berlin State Museums, the Freie Universität Berlin, the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin and the Institute for Cultural Inquiry Berlin. Together with Monica Juneja and the Cluster of Excellence Asia and Europe in a Global Context of Heidelberg University the Art Histories and Aesthetic Practices program initiated a three-part series of events, concerning the problem of languages and terminologies in a transregional history of art. Further cooperations involve the Deutsches Forum für Kunstgeschichte, Paris (Max Weber Institute). The activities of the group include regular meetings, museum visits, site specific workshops and an annual travelling seminar.

Program directors

Hannah Baader
Kunsthistorisches Institut in Florenz
Max-Planck-Institut
Via Giuseppe Giusti, 44
50121 Firenze / Italy
E-Mail: baader@khi.fi.it

Gerhard Wolf
Kunsthistorisches Institut in Florenz
Max-Planck-Institut
Via Giuseppe Giusti, 44
50121 Firenze / Italy
E-Mail: dirwolf@khi.fi.it

Partners

in cooperation with
supported by

2018/19

Stéphanie Benzaquen-Gautier, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow 
Ghosts in Transition: For a Spectro-Aesthetics of Contemporary Art in Postconflict Societies 

Nachiket Chanchani, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow (Januar 2019–Juli 2019) 
Scrolling Forward: Manuscript Culture, Literary Production, and the Making of Early Modern Western India

Afonso Dias Ramos, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow 
The Visual South: Decolonising Visual Culture In and Out of the Museum

Daniel Horn, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow (Oktober 2018–April 2019) 
Les Autres Temps Modernes - Présence Africaine, Existentialism, Art Brut and the Revision of Primitivism in Postwar Paris (1945–1960)

Shailka Mishra, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow 
The Painting Workshop of Amber-Jaipur in the Eighteenth Century: Paintings, Patronage, Practices

Deepti Mulgund, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
Learning to See, Learning to Draw: Vision, Modernity and the Teaching of Drawing in 19th century Bombay

Sophia Prinz, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow 
Global Modernity, Material Worlds, and the Migration of Form

Lianming Wang, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow 
Animal Encounters in the Qing Court: Pictorial Monuments and Political Narratives, 1740–1790

Filiz Tütüncü Çağlar, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow 
Rewriting the History of Ottoman Archaeology: The Case of Raqqa Excavations by the Ottoman Imperial Museum (1905/6 and 1908)

Jing Zhu, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow 
Photographing Bodies of non-Han in the Southwest of China in 1930s and 1940s: Anthropology, Museum Collections and Gender

Amina Grunewald, Ph.D.
Affiliated Fellow 
Kin-Centrism and Empathetic Memory Work in Contemporary North American Indigenous Artworks

Alya Karame, Ph.D.
Affiliated Fellow 
The Lives of Qur'anic Manuscripts from Eleventh Century CE Khurasan: Palimpsests of Religious and Political Meanings

 

2016/17

Lamia Balafrej, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
The Mediation of Intricacy. Medium, Representation and Authorship in Late fifteenth-century Persian Painting

Lesley Nicole Braun, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
Congolese Representations of the Female in Motion

Peter H. Christensen, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
Germany and the Ottoman Railway Network: Art, Empire, and Infrastructure

Wulandani Dirgantoro, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
Memory and the Avant-Garde: Trauma in Indonesian Visual Arts 1970–1990

Yanlong Guo, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
Exotic and Domestic: The Consumption of Bronze Mirrors in Inner Asia (300 BCE–300 CE)

Venugopal Maddipati, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
Deccanizing the Absolute: Deep Time in the 19th century imagination of Buddhist and Islamicate Architecture (Bhaja, Karle, Bedsa, Girar and Ajanta)

Sarada Natarajan, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
Artistic Agency and Pre-modern Indian Sculpture: Towards a View 'from Below'

Márton Orosz, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
Visual Studies in the Cybernetic Age – Human Solidarity and Engineered Civilization in Gyorgy Kepes' Socially-Oriented Media Art Practice

Sanja Savkic, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
Engaging Preclassic Maya Visual Configurations at San Bartolo, Guatemala

Monica Juneja, Ph.D.
Guest Scholar
Can Art History be Made Global? A Discipline in Transition

 

2015/16

Ahmed Adam, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
Objects from Sudan in the Collections of Berlin / History of Museums in Sudan

Rakhee Balaram, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
Decolonizing the Modern: Amrita Sher-Gil, Rabindranath Tagore and the Global Avant-Garde

Federico Buccellati, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
Mesopotamian Palatial Architecture: A Study of Space and Authorship

Annalisa Butticci, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
Saint Anthony of Padua and the god of Nana Ntona in Elmina. A Ghanaian Tale of Transcultural Religious Aesthetics

Peyvand Firouzeh, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
Depicted Legitimacy: Sufi-Sultan Encounters in the Visual and Textual Cultures of South Asia

Gül Kale, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
Artifacts as Sources of Wisdom and Wonder: Intersections between Ottoman Books on Architecture and European Travel Narratives in the Seventeenth Century

Subhashini Kaligotla, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
A River Runs Through: Sacred Spaces in the Landscape of the Early Medieval Deccan

Banu Karaca, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
Missing Provenance, 'Lost' Works: The Blind-Spots of Art History in Turkey

Dipti Khera, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
Feeling of a Place: Art, Affect and Authority Between Mughal and British Empires

 

2014/15

Saima Akhtar, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
Corporate Empire: Fordism and the Making of Immigrant Detroit 1908 – 1956

Mohamed Elshahed, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
Revolutionary Modernism? Architecture and the Politics of Transition in Egypt, 1936-1967

Atreyee Gupta, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
Anti-illusionism and Abstraction in a Global Field: India, ca. 1930-1960

William Kynan-Wilson, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
From Souvenir to Stereotype: The Ottoman World in Early Modern Text and Image

Combiz Moussavi-Aghdam, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
Iranian Art in the 1960s: An Alternative Modernity?

Roxana Nakashima, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
English Iconoclast Corsairs in Spanish America. 1567-1595

Yoonjung Seo, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
The Sacred Past and the Celebrated Present: Chinese Figural Subjects in the Commemorative Court Painting of the Chosŏn dynasty in Korea

Yudong Wang, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
Painting, Sculpture, and Knowledge in Medieval China

Peter Webb, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
Text, Image and Idea in Islamic Architecture: 'Buildings and Books'

Ittai Weinryb, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
Art and Experience in the Time of the Astrolabe

 

2013/14

Mathias Fubah Alubafi, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
Africa on the Move: Drinking Horns in the Cameroon Grassfields and Beyond

Haythem Bahoora, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
Politics and Aesthetics in Arabic Literature: Modernism and Nation Building in 20th Century Iraq

Martina Becker, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
Urban Places of Worship, Beirut 1950s and 60s

Maria José de Abreu, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
Theotokos: Reassessing the Byzantine Icon in Times of Electronic Media

Niharika Dinkar, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
Colonial Shadows: Vision and Space in Modern Indian Art

Michael Falser, Ph.D.
Affiliated Fellow
Heritage as a Transcultural Concept—Angkor Wat from an Object of Colonial Archaeology to a Contemporary Global Icon

Anna McSweeney, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
The Alhambra in the Middle East: Architectural Revivals of a Nasrid Palace in the 19th Century

Sugata Ray, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
A Fragile Techné: India in Colonial Photography, Print Culture, and Archaeology

Romuald Tchibozo, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
Artistic and Cultural Relations between the Former German Democratic Republic and African Countries: From Influence Spheres Establishment to the Socialist Aesthetic Construction

Li Zhang, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
Bronze Age China and the Early Globalization of Art

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