Call for papers: Art and Design Symposium

23 October 2015, New Zealand

Following six highly successful symposia held at the Dunedin School of Art, from ‘Illustrating the Unseeable: Reconnecting Art and Science’ (2009) to ‘Art and Book’ (2014), the Dunedin School of Art, together with the School of Design at the Otago Polytechnic and the design programme in the Department of Applied Sciences at the University of Otago, is organising a seventh symposium entitled ‘Art and Design.’

In the history of Western art the disciplines of Fine Art and design have drifted apart with the growth of the cult of the autonomous artist/painter-sculptor in the Renaissance. This difference became more rigid with the development of industrial design in the nineteenth century and is encapsulated in the phrase ‘good art is a talent: good design is a skill.’ But is this difference really so rigid? After all artists need to acquire skills and good designers need talent, and certain ‘arts’—such as textile and clay arts—often have as much to do with design and applied skills as they have to do with ‘inspiration.’ In the Pacific world a difference between art and design made no sense before colonisation. This symposium is an opportunity to tease out differences and discover synergies, to follow the history of contiguities and divergence between art and design, and to put in place a model of creative co-operation for the 21st century.

In association with this symposium there will also be a tour of exhibitions and workshops in Dunedin associated with  ‘Art and Design.’ 

These symposia now have a tradition of gaining book contracts: papers from ‘Art and Food’ were published by Cambridge Scholars Publishing in the UK in 2014 and ‘Art and Money’ will follow in 2015. The organisers hope to be able to gain a similar contract with the papers and artworks from this symposium. 

There will be no charge for registration. Food and drink will be provided.


The final date for submissions of abstracts for paper is 1 May 2015. All abstracts will be peer reviewed before finalising the programme. 

All enquiries should be addressed to [email protected] .