Kunstgeschichte und ästhetische Praktiken

The Berlin-based research program Art Histories and Aesthetic Practices. Kunstgeschichte und ästhetische Praktiken aims to open art historical studies to a global horizon, beyond the traditional boundaries of the discipline. It creates a space of dialogue for scholars from all continents and regions, to discuss the potential and contours of a plural art history. By doing so, it envisages dialogue among Islamic, Asian, African, European and Latin American art histories and archaeologies as well as other fields dealing with the history of visual cultures. The program addresses the connectivity of larger historical spaces and investigates artefacts and artistic production in a comparative approach, experimenting with new methodologies and forms of collaborative research.

The concept of aesthetic practices introduced by the program invites the study of artefacts, their materiality, and processes of transfer and transformation in a transcultural perspective. This includes the dynamics of production and the perception of things, images and architectures from the time of their creation to their first apprehension up to the present day, including their display, storage, oppression or reworking.

Art Histories and Aesthetic Practices embraces sociological, historical, material, scientific, religious, legal, economic and philological questions or dimensions, together with the study of aesthetic practices. Chronologically, the program spans from the early times of artistic production to the present day. It is structured along three thematic lines: 1. Materiality and Techniques, 2. Mobility, Transfer and Translation, 3. Narratives and Display. These categories will be addressed on all levels. They are part of political, religious and social dynamics, with the artefacts as key components,  participants or even actors. The project aims to overcome the duality of formal versus contextual approaches to artefacts or object constellations.

The project is an initiative of the KHI in Florence (Max-Planck-Institute) at the Forum Transregionale Studien in Berlin, and is directed by Hannah Baader and Gerhard Wolf. Art Histories and Aesthetic Practices cooperates with the art history departments and the museums in Berlin and integrates the program Connecting Art Histories in the Museum (KHI Florenz/SMB). The inclusion of up to ten annual postdoctoral fellowships, workshops and a travelling seminar will establish a rich network of international scholars, for the redefinition of art history and visual studies in a transregional and global perspective.

Art Histories and Aesthetic Practices. Kunstgeschichte und Ästhetische Praktiken
Forum Transregionale Studien
Wallotstrasse 14
14193 Berlin