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Conference - Border Control: On the Edges of American Art

Posted on Tuesday, 7th March 2017

Reserve your place now for this major international conference. Led by Tate Research, the two-day event brings together historians of art and visual culture, to share new scholarship exploring the crossed boundaries and expanded limits of art from the United States.

Thursday 25 and Friday 26 May 2017
Tate Liverpool, Albert Dock, Liverpool Waterfront, Liverpool L3 4BB, UK

Workshop convened by Julia Bailey (Tate Research) and Alex Taylor (University of Pittsburgh)
Supported by the Terra Foundation for American Art

Recent histories of American art have strived to uncover the varied acts of traversal and attempts at containment that have shaped its development. As migration and expatriatism have come to be understood among its defining characteristics, once carefully delineated edges between the national and the foreign seem increasingly porous. This shift corresponds with the dissolution of other kinds of borders. Artists have long transgressed the limits of artistic movement, medium specificity and other imposed restrictions, sometimes sneaking well outside the bounds of art itself. Historians of American art have also begun to more actively cross the disciplinary limits that once constrained the field.

Led by keynote speakers Philip Ursprung (Professor of the History of Art and Architecture, ETH Zurich) and Cécile Whiting (Chancellor’s Professor, University of California, Irvine), ‘Border Control: On the Edges of American Art’ will embrace scholarship that attends to the boundaries of American art in the broadest visual, historical and conceptual terms.


As space is limited, attendees must RSVP to by 5 May 2017
Places will be allocated on a first come, first served basis.

This conference is presented as the culmination of the three-year Tate Research project ‘Refiguring American Art’, and coincides with a related display at Tate Liverpool.

Full schedule available at