CFP: Binary Modernisms: Re/Appropriations of Modernist Art in the Digital Age / Deadline: 14 March, 2021

Posted by Paula Clemente Vega on 27 January 2021

Open Library of Humanities Journal Special Collection: Call for Articles

Binary Modernisms: Re/Appropriations of Modernist Art in the Digital Age

Binary Modernisms addresses the convergence of modernism and digital technologies in their disruption of traditional methods of art creation. Drawing on existing discussions of early 20th-century modernism’s disturbance of traditional cultural forms and digital technologies’ effects on the creative process, this collection questions where these two seemingly different approaches to culture and art collide. Binary Modernisms posits that just as modernist trends in literature, performance and visual art were seen as a form of rebellion against the obsolete frameworks of culture production in the beginning of the last century, digital technologies are equally influential on contemporary cultural artefacts and culture production in the contemporary world. 

As the digital has become increasingly prevalent in approaches to creativity and visual culture creation, it has prompted the reconstruction and/or remediation of existing cultural forms. This process has become even more apparent during the Covid-19 pandemic as digital platforms and tools have taken a more significant place not only in everyday interactions and activities but also in artistic practice, curatorship, viewership, and performance. Altering audiences' interaction with cultural artefacts, digital technology has accelerated culture production and broadened its accessibility, a process not dissimilar to the modernists’ take on established art techniques and formats in the beginning of the previous century. 

The call invites proposals from scholars of modernist studies, digital humanities and digital culture, fine art, art history, cultural theory, modern and contemporary history, critical studies, film and media, and all adjacent disciplines. Submissions from disciplines not traditionally associated with fine art or modernism, including psychology and computer science, are also encouraged, as long as they respond to the call’s main theoretical concerns. 

More particularly, the call is interested in topics including (but not limited to):

processes of resistance, remediation, digital hybridisation and/or reassessment of modernism

the question of authorship – the single author, the collaboration between the human and the machine, authorial agency / the agency of the machine

the concept of artistic imagination/the genesis of the work of art

women-authored works


gender identity

little-known modernist figures

non-Anglophone and transnational modernisms

contemporary and/or digital artists who reappropriate modernist approaches to art

more contemporary approaches to artistic practice including video/sound installations, heritage projects, examples of museum/gallery curatorial projects, and visitor attractions

the translation of the visitor experience from the physical space of the gallery or the museum to digital platforms (e.g. how does modernism translate to the digital world, and the digital transition’s implications on the creative process)

questions of accessibility and neurodiversity in art through digital technologies

the audience’s insight of the experience or the work of art, as well as the challenges this might pose to traditional forms of fine art

Please submit an abstract of 250 words and a short biographical statement of 200 words by 14 March 2021. Authors of successful submissions will be notified by 31 March 2021. Final articles should be approximately 8,000 words in length and will be expected by 31 August 2021. Articles will be subject to double blind peer review. 

The special collection Binary Modernisms, edited by Dr Zlatina Nikolova (, University of Exeter), is to be published in the Open Library of Humanities (OLH) (ISSN 2056-6700). The OLH is an Andrew W. Mellon Foundation-funded open-access journal with a strong emphasis on quality peer review and a prestigious academic steering board. Unlike some open-access publications, the OLH has no author-facing charges and is instead financially supported by an international consortium of libraries.

Submissions should be made online at in accordance with the author guidelines and clearly marking the entry as “BINARY MODERNISMS,” SPECIAL COLLECTION. Submissions will then undergo a double-blind peer-review process. Authors will be notified of the outcome as soon as reports are received.

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