Musical Cartographies

Musical Cartographies: The Harvard Graduate Music Forum Conference, 2016

29-30 January 2016

Harvard University Department of Music
Cambridge, MA

Keynote: Arun Saldanha (University of Minnesota)

Call for Proposals

This interdisciplinary conference investigates the relationship between music and the organization of space. Approaching the topic from the perspectives of both scholarly inquiry and creative practice, we will ask how music has been implicated in mappings of physical and conceptual spaces and how spatial mappings have functioned as ways of thinking about musical sound.

Topics for consideration include but are not limited to:

Geography, power, and identity:

  • How have historically and culturally contingent geographical formations conditioned music’s production, dissemination, and reception?
  • How does music intersect with geographically-mediated categories such as race, nation, and ecology?
  • How do issues of diaspora, migration, and stateless peoples complicate the relationships we draw between music and geography?

Representations of sound, time, and musical form:

  • How have music-theoretical models mapped domains such as pitch, timbre, and gesture?
  • How is map-and path- making implicated in music cognition and the phenomenology of listening, and how might models such as cognitive mapping shed light on these processes?
  • How might we think of musical notation and other visual representations of music as forms of cartography?

Practices and technologies:

  • How do scholars and creative practitioners draw and contest disciplinary, aesthetic and conceptual boundaries—for instance, between academic fields, between art forms, or between the “musical” or “extra-musical”?
  • How do composers, performers, and sound artists creatively organize the physical and conceptual spaces in which they work?
  • How have technologies been implicated in mapping musical spaces, and how have new media technologies altered the shape, nature, and limits of such spaces?

Submissions
We welcome submissions from current graduate students exploring these issues from the perspectives of both research and practice. We seek proposals on all repertoires, musical practices, and historical periods from a broad array of disciplinary and methodological perspectives.

Formats for presentation include:

  • 20-minute papers, audiovisual presentations, or exploratory text works, with 10 minutes for discussion
    Please submit abstracts of a maximum of 350 words and, where appropriate, up to 4 additional pages for figures. Please add a short statement regarding AV requirements.
  • 30-minute composers’ colloquia, performances, or lecture-recitals, with 15 minutes for discussion
    Please submit details of the work to be presented in a maximum of 350 words and, where appropriate, links to downloads (via Dropbox, WeTransfer, Google Drive etc.) of relevant sound recordings, scores, and/or supplementary documentation.

In addition to the above questions, composers and performers might consider:

  • What role does space play in your conceptualization of musical form? In your approach to musical performance?
  • What is mapped during composition or performance? This could include time, coincidence, relationships, physical space, and other parameters.
  • How do you relate in your work to geographical categories such as race, nation, and ecology? Likewise, how do you relate to conceptual boundaries such as those between genres, art forms, or historical periods?
  • How do your creative practices challenge existing ways of mapping musical sound?

Deadline for the proposal: 17 November 2015

Please send submissions to: harvardgmf2016@gmail.com

For more information, please visit: http://projects.iq.harvard.edu/gmf2016/home

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