Archive for the ‘conferences’ Category

Just as I yearn to be in Saskatoon for the upcoming Woolf conference in June, so I longed to be one of the 9,000 in Chicago this past weekend for the Association of Writers and Writing Programs (AWP) annual conference and bookfair. Alas, neither is possible this year, but I can follow them vicariously.

I couldn’t keep up with the 400 readings, lectures, panel discussions and forums, but I was able to follow a bit of the action in my chosen field, creative nonfiction, through Brevity—the online little sister of Creative Nonfiction, the esteemed journal that tops my list of “wannabe in it” publications. (They did print my letter to the editor in which I pointed out an error; they had published a piece asserting that Woolf wrote one of her essays in 1943. That may be as close as I get to being inside their coveted covers.)

I was most interested in a report on an AWP panel discussion entitled “Modernist Nonfiction: Virginia Woolf and Her Contemporaries.” Jocelyn Bartkevicius led the panel with her paper on Woolf, discussing perception and interiority. She cited Woolf’s definition of a good essay as one that has “a curtain that shuts us in, not out,” from the closing line of “The Modern Essay” in The Common Reader.

In another post, Daniel Nester recaps a session on “Negotiating Time and Narrative Distance in Nonfiction.” He talks about Woolf’s idea of the “I-then,” the remembered self, and the “I-now,” the present, and about “moments of being” (from “Sketch of the Past”), about teaching writing students how we write in different tenses to make this stand out.

I’m sure these two posts represent just a smattering of the breadth of Woolf’s ethereal presence hovering over the conference.

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Topics at Woolf panels at the 2011 Modern Language Association Convention in Los Angeles, Calif., Jan. 6-9, range from dress to dirt.

They include:

  • Sartorial Bloomsbury
    Chair: Jane Garrity, University of Colorado, Boulder
    Presenters: Catherine Mintler, University of Oklahoma: “Bloomsbury’s Underwear: The Petticoat and Other Sartorial Fetishes;” Celia Marshik, SUNY Stony Brook, “Ottoline Morrell, Bloomsbury, and Avant-Garde Dress;” Garrity, “Vanessa Bell’s Sartorial Primitivism”
  • Bloomsbury and Africa
    Danell Jones, Montana State University, Bozeman
    Presenters: Jeanne Dubino, Appalachian State University, “An Anti-Imperialist League of Their Own: The Hogarth Press, Kenya, Norman Leys, and Parmenas Githendu Mockerie;” Martyn Downer, independent scholar, “Bunga Bunga: The Language of the 1910 Dreadnought Hoax;” Laura Winkiel, University of Colorado, Boulder, “From Cosmopolitanism to Anti-Imperialism: William Plomer, the Hogarth Press, and Colonial Critique”
  • Dirt, Desire Recollection: James Joyce and Virginia Woolf
    Bonnie Kime Scott, San Diego State University
    Presenters: Bonita Rhoads, Charles University, Prague, “Woolf’s Gothic Modernism: Spirited Feminism in To the Lighthouse;” Katherine Merz, University of Wisconsin-Madison, “Shitting on Empire: Metropolitan Abjection and Colonial Returns;” Abby Bender, New York University, “The Crumbs of Ulysses;” Richard Brown, University of Leeds, “Joyce, Woolf, and the Philosophy of Dirt.”

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This year’s Virginia Woolf conference is coming up soon. And organizers continue to make additions to the program.

The most recent is a staged reading called “Life in the Country: A Dramatic Reading for Five Voices,” by Roberta Palumbo of Holy Names University.

The 50-minute chamber play features dialogue created from the letters, diaries, and memoirs of Virginia Woolf, Leonard Woolf, Vanessa Bell, Dr. Octavia Wilberforce and Louie Mayer.

It will be performed by professional actors from Lexington, Ky., and is scheduled to follow Thursday’s opening reception. It will be on stage at Georgetown’s Lab Theatre, right across the street from the Art Gallery, where the reception will be held.

Get more details about the 2010 Annual International Conference on Virginia Woolf: Woolf and the Natural World, June 3-6, in the Thomas & King Leadership and Conference Center at Georgetown College in Georgetown, Ky.

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Virginia Woolf & the Natural World: An Exhibition in Conjunction with the 20th Annual International Annual Conference on Virginia Woolf: Woolf and the Natural World is scheduled for May 13 -June 9 at the Anne Wright Wilson Fine Arts Gallery at Georgetown College in Georgetown, Ky.

The hours and schedule

The exhibit is free and open to the public. Hours are Monday through Friday, noon-4:30 p.m. and by appointment. Special hours during the conference weekend are  June 3, 6:30-8:30 p.m.; June 4 and 5, noon-5 p.m.; and June 6, 11 a.m.-1 p.m. For an appointment, contact the gallery via e-mail at galleries@georgetowncollege.edu or by phone at 502-863-8173.

The exhibition of fine art, rare books and other printed material has been curated by Dr. Juilee Decker, chair of the art department at Georgetown College. The juried show features 32 pieces, many for sale, by regional, national and international artists.

Free exhibition events include:

  • Opening reception on June 3, 6:30-8:30 p.m.
  • Closing reception and keynote address by Diana Swanson of Northern Illinois University on June 6, 11 a.m.-1 p.m.

The art on exhibit

Virginia Woolf bust by Valentina Mazzei

A range of works include representations of Woolf in the following media:

  • a bronze bust
  • a drawing of the author created in one sitting and using more than 20 pencils
  • a digital print from several perspectives
  • an oil on panel.

Artwork responding to Woolf’s writing and the conference theme include:

  • a visual tribute to The Waves
  • abstract and representational mixed media on panel
  • acrylic and graphite on paper
  • watercolor landscapes
  • digital prints that blend word and image
  • several finely woven works that incorporate white oak, reed, maple, macaw and copper
  • a six-foot wide installation of carved wooden leaf-like forms arranged in a circle on the floor with a 12-inch opening in the center that subtly suggests the void from where a tree trunk might emerge.

The artists

Artists whose work was selected for the exhibition are: Bill Andrus (Lexington, Ky.), Jennifer Barnett Hensel (Altadena, Calif.), Ashley Bell (Baton Rouge, La.), Diana S. Brennan (Greenville, R.I.), Herb Goodman (Richmond, Ky.), Mille Guldbeck (Bowling Green, Ohio), John Higdon (Pensacola, Fla.), Cynthia Kukla (Bloomington, Ill.), Lauren Garber Lake (Gainsville, Fla.), Liz Lee (Fredonia, N.Y.), George Lorio (Brownsville, Texas), Valentina Mazzei (Rome, Italy), Linda Stein (New York, N.Y.), and Kim Rae Taylor (Cincinnati, Ohio).

In addition, two works by Isota Tucker Epes (1918-2009) have been lent from the collection of J. J. Wilson.

The printed work on display

The Hogarth Press housed at Sissinghurst

Printed material will be on view from private and public collections, including the Special Collections Library at the University of Kentucky, the Ekstrom Library at the University of Louisville and the Cincinnati Public Library.

First editions published in London and New York will be displayed, including a number of works printed by the Woolfs and at the Hogarth Press:

  • Woolf’s Common Reader (Hogarth Press, 1925)
  • Monday or Tuesday with woodcuts by Vanessa Bell (Hogarth Press, 1921)
  • the sketch of Kew Gardens, number 12 in an edition of 500 copies decorated by Vanessa Bell.

The publications disclose, further, the range of activity printed by the Woolfs on behalf of the Bloomsbury Group, including Roger Fry (The Artist and Psycho-Analysis, 1924). Works by a larger circle of intellectuals will be included in this exhibition. Included are the work of John Carl Flugel, whose The Psychology of Clothes was published by the Institute of Psycho-Analysis in 1930.

Of special mention is the collection of Victorian photographs taken by Julia Margaret Cameron and printed by Leonard and Virginia Woolf at their press in 1926.

The conference

Cecil Woolf

While the exhibition and closing keynote are free and open to the public, a full slate of speakers and presentations is available to conference attendees.

Noted scholars Bonnie Kime Scott  of San Diego State University, Carrie Rohman of Lafayette College and Christina Alt of the University of Ottawa will offer keynote addresses.

In addition, Cecil Woolf, publisher of the Bloomsbury Heritage Series and a nephew of Leonard and Virginia Woolf, will give a talk.

Registration and more information

The deadline for advance registration is April 25. After that date, the registration fee will increase $30. Individuals interested in hearing conference talks may take advantage of daily, on-site registration at $55 per day.

Fuller conference details are available from the conference organizer, Dr. Kristin Czarnecki at Kristin_Czarnecki@georgetowncollege.edu.

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Call for Papers: International Society of Virginia Woolf Panel on Bloomsbury and Africa

Welcomed subjects include Woolf’s imaginative uses of Africa, the Dreadnought Hoax, Bloomsbury and African art, Leonard Woolf and Africa and Hogarth Press publications.

Abstracts of 500 words are due March 12, 2010, to Danell Jones, danelljones@bresnan.net.

The 2011 MLA Annual Convention will be held Jan. 6 to 9, 2011, in Los Angeles.

Call for Papers: Woolf Panel on Victorian Woolf

Possible topics include Woolf’s Victorians and Victorianisms, her debts to Victorian contexts, sources and precursors; her modernism reframed, denied or backdated; her late- or neo-Victorian politics, technologies, travels and afterlives.

Abstracts of 250 words are due by March 2, 2010, to Jesse E. Matz, matzj@kenyon.edu.

The 2011 MLA Annual Convention will be held Jan. 6 to 9, 2011, in Los Angeles.

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