Call For Papers: A Half-Century of Fellowship

An exterior photograph of the Smithsonian American Art Museum.

Symposium and Publication on the History of the SAAM Fellowship Program

In recognition of the 50th Anniversary of the Smithsonian American Art Museum’s fellowship program in 2020, the American Art journal invites contributions on the program’s history and its role in the larger field of American art history. Accepted authors will present their findings at a symposium in Washington, D.C., on March 21, 2020. A smaller selection of papers will appear in the fall 2020 issue of American Art. The museum will provide honoraria to offset travel and publication costs.

We are looking for short essays (2,000–2,500 words, including endnotes) that address one of the following (or related) themes: In retrospect, what can fellowship topics reveal about the evolution of our field or subject trends over time? Did the museum’s support enable turning points in the canon, scope of inquiry, methodologies, or theoretical orientations? Are there significant intellectual and institutional alliances that can be traced to generational cohorts in the fellowship program? How has the program’s location within a museum shaped the importance of object-centered study in this field of art history? Has the program’s position within the Smithsonian Institution fostered interdisciplinary and intercultural approaches to understanding American art? Reciprocally, how has the presence of research fellows contributed to the museum—to collections, exhibitions, and educational programs?

Former fellows are encouraged to send letters of interest to as soon as possible. Upon request, prospective authors will receive access to the SAAM fellowship archive: chronological documentation of fellows’ appointments and topics, testimonials from fellows, and a list of past lunchbag seminars.

The manuscripts will be due August 1, 2019, for review by the journal’s editorial board.

SAAM Renwick 50 years of fellowship advancing american art 1970-2020