Women in Revolt: radical acts, contemporary resonances
22 and 23 March 2024 (10.00 – 18.00) Clore Auditorium, Tate Britain
21 March 2024 (18.00 – 20.30) Opening reception at Chelsea Space, University of the Arts, London
This conference aims to bring together papers that connect and respond to Women in Revolt, Tate Britain’s major survey of feminist 1970s and 1980s art practices in the UK (8 November 2023 – 7 April 2024).
The two-day conference, hosted by Tate Britain on 22 and 23 March 2024, following an opening reception at Chelsea Space on 21 March, will explore the live and performance-based arts, sound and moving image practices that were an integral part of feminist creative and campaigning activities of the 1970s and 1980s.
The conference will engage with debates emerging from the exhibition and situates its historical focus in a wider contemporary and global context, welcoming an international and intersectional perspective on feminist art practices from scholars, artists and thinkers engaging with feminist historiographies in both critical and creative dimensions.
Combining scholarly and practice-led panels and keynote speakers with artist talks, screenings, performances and break-out sessions, the conference aims to address how some of the tenets of the Women’s movement and other activist practices in the 1970s and 1980s continue to resonate in contemporary feminism.
Our call for papers welcomes, but is not strictly limited to the following approaches and topics, including those related to international contexts outside the UK, particularly those from the global majority:
- The role of feminist collective practice, and the legacy of consciousness raising and small group cultures connected with moving image, performance and sound practices.
- Decolonial approaches in/to feminist theory, histories, organisation and canonisation.
- Representations of feminist campaigns for: black visibility and rights, equal pay, physical and reproductive rights, wages for housework, childcare and community organising.
- Feminist creative practices as forms of resistance and protest during this time, such as those connected to queer rights and representation (for example Clause 28 in the UK), the British occupation of Northern Ireland (and other regions), campaigns in support of the Miner’s strike (1984-1985) and workers’ actions, rock against racism and other events internationally.
- Feminist groups, movements and practices outside the UK.
- Intersectional representations: addressing LGBTQIA+ activisms and their spaces of reception internationally.
- New perspectives and archival research on artists and groups, particularly those that have been overlooked.
- Studies of the networks, reception spaces and infrastructures supporting live practices and sound/music.
- The role of publishing, both established and small scale, in the creation, critical dissemination and evaluation of creative practices.
- Film, video and performance as a reflection of/on feminist campaigns and concerns of the period.
- Correspondences between international practices and networks.
- Works that test interdisciplinary approaches across sound, image and performance.
- Critical engagement with museums and other platforms in archiving, showing and revisiting these practices and movements.
- Reflections on recent (i.e. after 1990) practices and movements in relation to theories, events and activism.
- The impact of intergenerational relationships and influence on feminist artmaking
The specific themes and focus of the conference will be shaped by the submissions we receive.
All submissions will be read and discussed by an advisory panel including: Rachel Garfield (Royal College of Art), Catherine Grant (Courtauld Institute), Claire M. Holdsworth (Central Saint Martins, UAL), Lauren Houlton (CREAM), Onyeka Igwe (London College of Communication, UAL), Lucy Reynolds (CREAM) and Rosie Thomas (CREAM).
We particularly welcome and support proposals from researchers and artists of colour, disabled speakers, women speakers, queer and trans speakers, displaced researchers and artists and people working in/with underrepresented territories.
Please submit a proposal, including a contact email and phone number and information about any access requirements along with the information outlined below to:
email@example.com (with the subject line ‘WIR conference proposal’)
by 11pm (23:00) GMT Tuesday 19 December 2023.
Participants will be contacted by early January 2024.
- For proposals for twenty-minute presentations, please provide the title, a 250 word abstract and a brief biography (100 words + social media links).
- For pre-constituted panels of three speakers please include a 250 word panel statement alongside individual abstracts (100 words) and biographies (100 words + social media links).
- For practice-led presentations please provide a proposal detailing the nature of the work to be presented, with a 250 word description, biography/biographies (100 words + social media links) and a concise note of technical requirements and maximum length running time.
For further enquiries please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
This event is being organised through CREAM (Centre for Research and Education in Arts and Media) in association with an advisory panel and with the assistance of other researchers in the field. It is hosted by Tate Britain, and with additional support from Chelsea Space, University of the Arts London.
Funding / access statement
Please note that at the time this call is being distributed, the organisers are in the process of securing funding and support from different institutions, with the aim of making this event as accessible as possible.
The event aims to operate on safe-space as well as other open-access principles and CREAM are currently in discussion with Tate about these arrangements.
Should you have specific access requirements, including travel costs or other needs, please feel free to discuss these in your proposal or contact us directly (via email, please note it might take a few days for us to respond).
The event will be ticketed and priced through Tate events to cover venue and administration/marketing with the aim of making it as accessible as possible (pricing TBC).