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Computers and the History of Art

CHArt was established in 1985 by art and design historians who happened also to be computer enthusiasts. Initially a forum for the exchange of ideas between people who were using computers in their research, the largely academic membership was soon augmented by members from museums and art galleries, as well as individuals involved in the management of the visual and textual archives and libraries relevant to the subject.

CHArt is a society open to all who have an interest in the application of computers to the study of art and design. We hold an annual conference and publish the conference proceedings, run an email discussion list and keep in contact with our members through a newsletter. You will find further details of all our publications and activities on this website.

Conformity, Process and Deviation: Digital Arts as 'Outsider'

CHArt 2014 conference, part of the UNDERGROUND
Kings College London Arts & Humanities Festival
Saturday, 18 October 2014

Digital engagement with art is thriving. Much of it is actively subversive of the traditional frameworks that enable art to be created and responded to – whether casually or professionally. This subversion takes various forms, including notions of value, uniqueness, fixity and location. The CHArt 2014 Conference wishes to explore the role of digital technologies in the underground creation, display, consumption and study of art. The online Urban Dictionary defines underground as follows: "A genre in music and other forms of media intended for an elite audience, that is often characterized by its high levels of originality and experimentation, and does not conform to typical standards, trends, or hypes as set by the popular mainstream media.” If emerging conformity and new processes must be disrupted; then what is mainstream; and what is not? – and who can tell?

Participation is sought from all sections of the CHArt community: art historians, artists, archaeologists, architects and architectural theorists and historians, philosophers, archivists, curators, conservators, educators, scientists, cultural and media theorists, content providers, technical developers, users and critics. CHArt will feature theoretical papers and demonstrations of academic and artistic work addressing – metaphorically or literally – questions of subversive content, design and communication, including:

  • Subversive engagement with digital arts and culture;
  • Originality and experimentation v. standards, trends and hypes;
  • Disruptions of the commonplace or the mainstream;
  • Visual digital subcultures;
  • Submerged identities;
  • Visualising the underground;
  • Elite audiences v. multi-peer connectivity;
  • Working in partnership with or against diverse organisations;
  • Cross-disciplinary subversive interventions (art/science; big data/visualisation; design/interaction).

The preliminary programme and online registration are available from our Eventbrite site now.
Read the abstracts.

The call for applications for the CHArt Helene Roberts Student Bursary has now closed. The bursary is co-sponsored by Routledge, Taylor & Francis.

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CHArt's annual conferences - read abstracts of papers from our recent conferences.

CHArt's email discussion list (Joining instructions & message archives)

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This site was last updated on 29 September 2014
To contribute information or to report any problems, email information@chart.ac.uk
CHArt is grateful to the Department of Digital Humanities, King's College, London for hosting this service.