The Mary L. Cornille (GRS’87) Annual Boston University Graduate Symposium in
the History of Art & Architecture

Details about the 2021-2022 Symposium are forthcoming. Contact the 2021-2022 co-Coordinators Francesca Soriano or Katherine Mitchell with any questions related to this year’s event.

Archive of 2020-2021 Symposium:

Symposium Dates: April 23-24 via Zoom
Free and Open to the Public

Crowd control — as both an idea and an act — raises questions about agency, authority, and influence. From ancient Rome to Boston City Hall, state-sponsored architecture has policed the body and shaped the ideal of a citizen. Yet subtler forces such as painting, prints, and photographs also exert powerful influence. The events of this past year have heightened our awareness of both the power of the people and the contours of the systems which surround them. We have seen the wide array of structures that seek to order, pacify, neutralize, inspire, repress, or control the collective.

We are delighted to bring together a range of papers on this theme for the 2021 Mary L. Cornille (GRS ’87) Graduate Symposium in the History of Art & Architecture, the 37th annual convening of emerging scholars hosted by Boston University. This year’s symposium will be a two-day Zoom event, held on Friday, April 23 and Saturday, April 24, 2021.

Panels of graduate student papers will be presented on Friday afternoon and Saturday morning, with a keynote lecture, “Power and Participation in Public Art,” by Dr. Paul Farber on Friday evening. A distinguished thinker, scholar, and curator, Dr. Farber is the Director and Co-Founder of Monument Lab, a public art and history studio based in Philadelphia. The 2021 Symposium was organized by Ph.D. candidates Jillianne Laceste and Phillippa Pitts.

Symposium Schedule

Panel 1:  “Pushing the Past”
Friday, April 23 from 3:30-5 PM EST

moderated by Colleen Foran, Boston University
  • “Bloodstained: Teresa Margolles in Venezuela,” by Corey Loftus, Tufts University
  • “Visual Politics and Human Agency: Humanization of Korean Culture and Dehumanization of Korean People in Joseon Folk Dolls,” by Shinhwa (Lina) Koo, University of London SOAS
  •  “Bawdy Bodies: A Queer Reading of Bathers at San Niccolò (1600),” by Aidan Flynn, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Keynote:  “Power and Participation in Public Art”
Friday, April 23 from 6-7:30 PM EST

Monument Lab’s director and co-founder Paul Farber (he/they) offers reflections on the field of public art. In the lecture, Farber contends we must radically change the ways we create, maintain, and engage our monuments. Farber shares stories from Monument Lab projects and partnerships, his work on transnational memory culture in Berlin, reflections on recent monument takedowns around the world, and a wishlist and action items for the next generation of monuments.

Panel 2:  “Patterned Behavior”
Saturday, April 24 from 10 AM-12PM EST
moderated by Rachel Kase, Boston University
  • “‘Primary Colors,’ ‘Primitive Nature,’: Architecture, Race, and Edutainment at the Pan-American Exposition,” by Kelli Fisher, Syracuse University
  • “Standardising Mobility and Instrumentalising Control: A Global Understanding of Quarantine Stations in Singapore and Hong Kong during the Late Nineteenth Century,” by Ian Tan, University of Hong Kong
  • “Regime of the Image: Looking at the Divis Flats and the Failure of Modernist Architecture in Belfast,” by Sarah Churchill, Drew University
  • “(Gendered) Activity & Movement in Classical Greek Domestic Architecture,” by Katy Knortz, Princeton University

Free and Open to the Public

This event is generously sponsored by the Boston University Center for the Humanities; the Boston University Department of History of Art & Architecture; and the Boston University Graduate Student History of Art & Architecture Association.