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Sign of the Times:
Examining Aesthetics After Trauma

May 5th, 2023 | 9AM-4:30PM
St. Patrick’s Building SP100, Carleton University (map)

AHGSS 2023 Conference Poster: Sign of the Times, Examine Aesthetics After Trauma Poster for Reesa Greenberg's keynote talk "Trauma Transported"

Carleton University’s Art History Graduate Students’ Society (AHGSS) is hosting Sign of the Times: Examining Aesthetics After Trauma on May 5th, 2023. This interdisciplinary conference will take place at Carleton University, located on unceded Algonquin Anishinaabe territory (Ottawa, Ontario).

Challenges to individuals, communities, countries, or our global existence can influence the ways in which we experience, communicate, and create. Considering the recent and ongoing pandemic and its effects on our global interactions, the conference will explore connections between trauma and aesthetics.

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9:00-9:15: Arrive and Mingle

9:15-9:30: Land Acknowledgement and Welcome

9:30-10:30: Blood and The Abject

Erin Galt: “The Affective Power of Visuals After Trauma in the Artworks of Ana Mendieta Through Deleuze, Kristeva, and Bennett

Regatu Asefa: “Refusal of French Morality: Female Blood Imagery in Fautrier and Saint-Phalle”

10:30-10:45: Break

10:45-12:15: Against the Western Tradition

Olivia Musselwhite: “Stitching as Storytelling and Healing: Ruth Cuthand’s Don’t Breathe, Don’t Drink (2016)

Aaron Waitson: “Untitled [Minstrelsy and American Identity]”

Sharon van Starkenburg: “Representing Pain in Visual Art: How Suffering Bodies are Othered in the Western Tradition”

12:30-2:00 pm: Lunch @ Ollie’s 

2:15-3:15: Navigating Space and Trauma 

      Yoobin Shin: “Invisibility, Space and Monument: Activism Through Absence

Rojina Sabetiashraf: “Embodied Experience in the Museum Context: Exploring the Intersection of Trauma and Aesthetics in the Aftermath of COVID-19 at the Tehran Museum of Contemporary Arts”

3:15-3:30 Break

3:30-4:30: Keynote Speaker

Reesa Greenberg: “Trauma Transported: Reflections on Canadian Responses to the Holocaust in Recent Exhibitions, Monuments, and Museums.”

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Abstracts & Presenter Bios

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Contact and Registration

To register or contact the AHGSS Executive, please send an email to:

Registrants are asked to please include the following:

  • Name (first and last)
  • Dietary restrictions
  • Lunch selection (options are available on this google form
  • Accessibility accommodations/requests/needs

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Important Information

Please note that this conference will take place in-person at Carleton University. There will not be an online component.

Due to space constraints, registration is capped at 40 people.

We will be providing lunch for all presenters and attendees

Presentations will be delivered in English.

We look forward to seeing you there!