Appel à contributions : Connoisseurship – or Connoisseurs? (CAA, Washington, 3-6 février 2016)

Call for Papers : CAA Session: Connoisseurship – or Connoisseurs?
Washington DC, February 3 – 06, 2016
Deadline: May 8, 2015

1611Connoisseurship is a practice in the history of art that has been theorized, valorized, vilified, rejected, and renewed. Several sessions at the annual CAA conference over the past twenty years have been devoted to its study. But is it appropriate to discuss connoisseurship as an objectifiable practice when it can be argued that in by its very nature it is an individualized pursuit? The problematic nature of group connoisseurship, entered into so optimistically in the 1960s by the Rembrandt Research Project, was demonstrated by the many critiques of the results of this group, its internal discord, and its subsequent reorganization under the leadership of one connoisseur, Ernst van de Wetering.
In this session we will consider whether or not connoisseurship as a practice is best understood through the study of individual connoisseurs, whose connoisseurship can be problematized in light of the connoisseur’s relationships with other art world participants, such as art dealers, museum professionals, private collectors, and art critics.
Papers that consider case studies of connoisseurs who practiced from positions of less authority, such as nonprofessional art historians, will be  especially welcome for what they can reveal to us about the importance of the social network of connoisseurs.
Please send an abstract (1-2 pages, double spaced), a letter of interest, a CAA submission form and current CV by May 8 to: Catherine Scallen

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