The disorderly animal in contemporary art

Conference item


Baker, Steve 2017. The disorderly animal in contemporary art.
AuthorsBaker, Steve
Abstract

‘The disorderly animal in contemporary art’ was a public lecture delivered in March 2017 at Eastern Kentucky University as part of the University’s annual Chautauqua Lecture series. The overall theme of the 2016-17 series was ‘Order and chaos’. The lecture doubled as a keynote address for the 3rd Biennial Living with Animals conference on the theme ‘Co-Existence’, being held at the University at the same time.
An immediate practical concern was how to pitch the lecture to two very different audiences sharing the same large lecture theatre, not to mention their rather different expectations of the thematic focus of the talk. An additional difference was that unlike the conference delegates, the local annual Chautauqua Lecture audience was unlikely to know much about either my writing or my art practice.
The material I was discussing was the work and the attitudes of a number of contemporary artists, myself included, who engage with ideas about the more-than-human world. I decided to structure the talk around three broad questions. First, why did contemporary art about animals take the shape that it did in the late 20th century? Second, how do contemporary artists think about their work, and how do their artworks work? Finally, what has changed in recent years, and why? This gave me an opportunity to revisit some of the more abrasive artworks discussed in my 2000 book The Postmodern Animal, and to contrast them with some of the quieter but generally more effective works discussed in my 2013 book Artist|Animal, which drew on my detailed interviews with artists. The last of my three questions allowed me to draw attention to the exhibition Co-Existence, curated by Julia Schlosser and Alexandra Murphy, which included some of my work and which was held at the University as part of the Living with Animals conference.

Year2017
Web address (URL)http://hdl.handle.net/10545/624361
hdl:10545/624361
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Publication dates2017
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Deposited08 Jan 2020, 09:53
ContributorsUniversity of Derby
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https://repository.derby.ac.uk/item/946q4/the-disorderly-animal-in-contemporary-art

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