CALL FOR PAPERS | Portraiture: representations and ways of being – International Conference


A New Perspective on Alexander M. Collection: A. A. R. M. the portraits painter. Oil on canvas (details). © RUI MACEDO 2017


Portraiture: representations and ways of being

06 – 07 November 2018

Faculdade de Belas-Artes da Universidade de Lisboa


Organizing Institutions 
Museu Nacional de Arte Contemporânea-Museu do Chiado
Instituto de História da Arte, Faculdade de Ciências Sociais e Humanas, Universidade Nova de Lisboa
Faculdade de Belas-Artes de Lisboa, Universidade de Lisboa
Centro de Estudos Humanísticos da Universidade do Minho
Fundação para a Ciência e Tecnologia
Direção Geral do Património Cultural
Amigos do Museu Nacional de Arte Contemporânea do Chiado


Scientific Committee  
Adelaide Ginga
Anísio Franco
António Filipe Pimentel
Emília Ferreira
Emília Tavares
Eunice Ribeiro
Joana d’Oliva Monteiro
Maria de Aires Silveira
Pedro Azara
Raquel Henriques da Silva
Rogério Miguel Puga
Victor dos Reis


Call for papers

from 30 June to 15 September, 2018
Notification of acceptance: until 1 October, 2018
The National Museum of Contemporary Art – Museu do Chiado (MNAC-MC), the Institute of Art History of the Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities of the NOVA University of Lisbon (IHA-FCSH/NOVA), the Faculty of Fine Arts of the University of Lisbon (FBAUL), the Centro de Estudos Humanísticos da Universidade do Minho (CEHUM) and the group of Amigos do Museu do Chiado invite the scientific and academic community to propose paper and panels on the general topic of the conference: Portraiture.
The representation of the other(s) — or of the same/self, in self-portrait — has been constant in art. A powerful document of the desire for the perennial, personal, social and artistic status, and of the way we aspire to be seen in life and posterity, portraiture has been extensively studied and revisited. In 2018, National Museum of Ancient Art(MNAA)  will host a major exhibition on portraits, mainly its nucleus of nineteenth-century portrait, and theses timeless representations always foster new (ways to) dialogue.
From the romantic sensibility to the observation of the natural and the psychological register, portraiture spans over the nineteenth century analyzing and registering different ways of being, in a range that covers and mirrors individual affirmation, and the reflection of social, political and economic environments of several generations. Oscillating also between multiple registers, in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries, portraiture has broadened its polysemy by re-examining social, decorative or artistic aspects, or capturing social tensions and inequalities, and by pursuing an oneiric incursion, multiplying and fragmenting or reconfirming itself through the experience of simulacrum, of self-reflection or of allegory.
We invite all interested researchers to propose papers and panels analyzing the many modes of portraiture, from the social and political portrait (approaching gender issues, supporting status, power and empowering or structuring collective memory and historical myths), to the weaving of intimacy, and the elaboration of normative concepts of beauty/ugliness, either in the representation of the other (or in ways of making the other absent) or in self-representation. We invite researchers to reflect and problematize the many aspects of portraiture in contemporary times, taken in broad terms, including historical and artistic antecedents that may illuminate the present context and the reception phenomenon. At a time when sciences intersect, we welcome studies on the various artistic media (painting, sculpture, drawing, engraving, photography, video, installation), including the use of scientific drawing in forensic science, as well as interviews, documentaries, philosophical thinking and literary creation.


Papers should last 20 minutes and should focus on the general conference tracks:
Genealogy of portraiture | Who represents who and why/who is representedand why | Expression and its paradigms | Observation and ‘registration’ of the face/body | The science of the face/body | The times of the face/body |Policies of expression | Physiognomy, garments and beauty | Self-observation, self-image | Selfies and ussies: Portraits in social media | Image and status | Totality and fragment | The individual, family and group portrait |The animal portrait | What do faces/bodies communicate | The power of the mask | Between intimacy and politics | The sexualized/genderized portrait |Under the skin | The literary portrait | Truth and likelihood |The construction of history


Important dates:
Call for papers: from 30 June-15 September, 2018
Notification of acceptance: until 1 October, 2018
Registration: between 2 October and 5 November, 2018
Congress: 06 and 07 November 2018