The Stickley Museum at Craftsman Farms and the American Fine and Decorative Arts Program at Sotheby’s Institute of Art seek submissions for the Fourth Annual Emerging Scholars Symposium to be held at the Stickley Museum on Saturday, October 18, 2014
“Craft and the Machine: Contemporary and Historical Perspectives”
One of the overriding concerns of craft reformers throughout the 19th and 20th centuries was the degree to which mechanization should be integrated into craft production. On the one hand, Irene Sargent echoed anti-machine sentiments in Gustav Stickley’s The Craftsman when she wrote “The slave of the machine must follow its movements at the peril of his health, sanity and life… He is in all things the opposite of the master craftsman…” Yet, at virtually the same time, Frank Lloyd Wright argued the opposite: “The great ethics of the Machine are as yet, in the main, beyond the ken of the artist or student of sociology; but the artist mind may now approach the nature of this thing from experience, which has become the commonplace of his field, to suggest, in time, I hope, to prove, that the machine is capable of carrying to fruition high ideals in art – higher than the world has yet seen!” We seek papers about craft—broadly construed as both historical and contemporary work—that sheds light on the complexities of this subject. Less a binary opposition than a strategy that reformers and practitioners employed to connect with audiences, we welcome papers from diverse periods and media that address the role of the machine in craft production. What sort of strategies—myths even—did practitioners and reformers use? What do these anxieties signaled by craft tell us more broadly about the cultures that produced them?
We invite current graduate students and recently graduated scholars to submit proposals for 20-25 minute papers that critically examine these issues. Please direct any questions to:
Director, American Fine and Decorative Arts Program
Sotheby’s Institute of Art, New York
Please submit the following by July 21, 2014:
· A one-page abstract of your topic with title.
· A current c.v.
All submissions will be reviewed by August 1 and you will receive an email with the decision about your proposal.
Accepted proposals must submit a final draft of the paper by September 7th, 2013.
Participants must be able to attend the symposium in order to deliver their paper.