Veranstaltung , Gastvortrag

Birgit Hopfener: Global Art History and the Challenge of Plurality

From Global Conceptualism towards a Pluriversal Conceptual Framework for Contemporary Art

Mainstream discourse of contemporary art in the global context, predominantly derived from Euro-American scholarship, has been largely unconcerned with rethinking Euro-American conceptual frameworks, and not yet sufficiently attended to the plural and transculturally interconnected conceptual and social histories that constitute contemporary art in the global framework. In 1999, the exhibition Global Conceptualism: Points of Origin, 1950s-1980s that was on show in several venues in the US, took up the challenge of how to engage with the plurality of contemporary conceptual art by adopting a multi-regional approach. Acknowledging and critically engaging with the exhibition’s seminal contributions, I take analyses of contemporary Chinese historiographic art as case studies to make the argument that it is only by further complicating and pluriversalizing the conceptual frameworks for contemporary art in the global context that we do justice to art’s plurality and work towards “discursive equality” (Parul Dave Mukherji).

Birgit Hopfener is an Associate Professor of art history at Carleton University. She situates herself in the fields of critical global art history, culture theory, and Chinese art history. Her present research centres upon questions around the heterogeneity of temporal assumptions (historiographical models, their respective concepts of time and temporality and temporal regimes) that constitute and frame our world, its art, subjects, and knowledge. To shed light on the transcultural historicity of contemporary art her current book project Doing Critical Global Art History. Transcultural analyses and a pluriversal conceptual framework for contemporary art historiographic art focuses on art historiographic works by contemporary Chinese artists. She authored the book Installationskunst in China. Transkulturelle Reflexionsräume einer Genealogie des Performativen (2013) and co-edited the volumes Negotiating Difference: Chinese Contemporary Art in the Global Context (2012) and Situating Global Art. Topologies – Temporalities - Trajectories (2018). She serves on the editorial boards of Art Journal, 21: Inquiries, and the Journal of Contemporary Chinese Art, and is a founding member of the international consortium Transnational and Transcultural Arts and Cultural Exchange (trACE) and the international research group Worlding Public Cultures.

Hopfener Ankündigung
Credits: Naoyoshi Hikosaka Floor Event (invitation) 1971 Silkscreen and offset 10 x 14.8 cm Courtesy of MISA SHIN GALLERY
Mo, 22. April 2024

18:15–19:30 Uhr


Universität für angewandte Kunst Wien, Vordere Zollamtsstraße 7, 1030 Wien