Modernist Methodologies:

Beyond Fine Art


Scholars working on material cultures in the humanities are increasingly faced with the methodological challenge of conducting research and devising corresponding curatorial projects on highly ephemeral objects and events, often requiring extensive reconstruction.


The committee for the Modernist Methodologies network welcomes applications for membership of a new interdisciplinary network focusing on the wider material culture of modernism(s) and the avant-garde. Bringing together researchers in art history, performance, film, choreography, literature, interior and set design, architecture and musicology, the network will develop critical and practical approaches for the study and display of overlooked material cultures and marginal modernisms from the late nineteenth and twentieth centuries.  


During 2019, the network will facilitate a three-part programme of training events for members, culminating in a collaboration with an arts organisation in Scotland. Events are open to all, unless otherwise stated, and the application process is reserved for workshops with limited capacity.




Event 1: Launch, 12th February

The launch workshop will be a chance for new members to:

  • introduce themselves and their research in an informal setting

  • discuss methodological and curatorial challenges their research has incurred

  • identify training needs that would best fit the group

Half-day workshop programme (14:30-17:30):

Part 1: research challenges and solutions, individual presentations 

Part 2: display and reconstruction, group discussion

Part 3: between theory and praxis, individual presentations and group discussion

Refreshments provided. 

Event 2: Talk by Prof. Christina Young & Tour of Glasgow Print Studio, 28th May

We are delighted to host a talk by Prof. Christina Young. Christina is a Professor of Conservation and Technical Art History at the University of Glasgow and will introduce her Leverhulme-funded project 'The Power to Transform,' which researches the interdisciplinarity of artists working in the theatre throughout the history of British theatre on painted stage cloths and set-design. Christina will discuss methodological issues faced when researching the highly ephemeral object of the painted stage-cloth, and issues around recreating/reimagining no longer extant objects of cultural history. 


The talk will be followed by a tour of Glasgow Print Studio at 3.30pm, where we will hear from the following practitioners on three different printing techniques: 

  1. Rosalind Lawless (screenprinting)

  2. Claire Forsyth (relief printing)

  3. Ian McNicol (etching)

Please RSVP via our Eventbrite

Priority for the studio tour will be given to attendees of the launch but all are welcome to the talk. 

Please email re reimbursement of travel expenses.


Event 2 Location

The Hepburn Room, 

7 University Gardens, 

University of Glasgow

Event 2 Time

Meet at 1:45pm for a 2pm start

Event 3: workshop or Tour with arts organisation, Autumn 2019, date tbc

By mid November, the network will finalise collaboration plans with a Scottish arts organisation (a museum, gallery or performing arts organisation) for an event in late November or December. Depending on the needs of the network as expressed at the launch, the event may be a workshop or behind the scenes curatorial tour at an arts or heritage institution, or take shape as a collaboration with a performing arts HEI, professional group or theatre. 




We will contribute to the reimbursement of travel costs with priority given to Scottish HEI members.


Become a member


Applicants please send an updated CV or short bio and 150 words expressing your interest to