Call for Abstracts on Forms of Excess in Post-1960 Art, Film, and Literature

Discard Studies announced a call for abstracts on the topic of “Forms of Excess in Post-1960 Art, Film, and Literature” for the University of York in the UK with a February 2015 deadline, followed up with a special event workshop and exhibits.

This appears to be an open request, and it comes with some interesting topic ideas, many of which may apply to our Garbology campus and classroom projects.

Visual art, film, and literature since 1960 has been marked by leftovers, repetitions, and time lags, despite emerging in a climate of accelerated technological development and the erasure of leisure time. From artworks that incorporate the trash and detritus of consumerist excess to novels and films that indulge in narrative ‘time-wasting,’ the cultural production of the last fifty years has revelled in the wasteful and excessive. This event asks: what are the aesthetics of excess? What are its material, temporal and figurative manifestations? Is artistic time-wasting a radical form of resistance to the capitalist imperative to be productive? Or do art’s glorious expenditures reinforce aesthetic hierarchies that privilege ‘difficulty’? We invite 20-minute papers from postgraduates and early-career researchers that engage with waste and excess in post-1960 art, literature, and film. Possible topics include (but are not limited to) the following:

  • Narrative: digressions; footnotes and marginalia; listing; repetition; the non-event; the filler; reality effects
  • Queer theory: the concept of the queer subject as embodying non-(re)productivity; queer temporalities; drag and camp as recycling
  • The body: labour; time-wasting and protest
  • Feminism: the gendered dynamics of lack and excess
  • Economic surplus: abstraction; financial markets; concepts of utility and value
  • Digital waste: big data; information overload; archive fever
  • Cold War politics: nuclear waste; abundance and wasting as critical tactics