“While Silent, They Speak: Art and Diplomacy”

March 28-29, 2014: Emerging Scholars Symposium, The University of Georgia

The Association of Graduate Art Students (AGAS) at the University of Georgia, in partnership with the Georgia Museum of Art, presents the “While Silent, They Speak: Art and Diplomacy.” The symposium will be held in conjunction with the exhibition Art Interrupted: Advancing American Art and the Politics of Cultural Diplomacy and coincides with the exhibition’s fourth and final installation at the Georgia Museum of Art, January 25-April 20, 2014.

This symposium expands the scope of the exhibition by addressing the broader theme of diplomacy throughout the history of visual and material culture worldwide. The visual arts can and have been used to promote and facilitate diplomatic agendas across cultures and time, and yet the arts have also challenged or impeded diplomatic efforts. Through the process of cross-cultural exchange, an object or image may shift in value and meaning, thereby illuminating, obscuring, or reinforcing cultural differences.

The keynote address by Ambassador Cynthia Schneider and a reception will take place March 28 and papers addressing artists as diplomat, cultural authority, and the politics of display will be presented on March 29.

* The exhibition, accompanying catalogue, educational programs, and national tour of Art Interrupted: Advancing American Art and the Politics of Cultural Diplomacy are made possible by grants from the Henry Luce Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts.