‘You Can Talk About Art History for an Entire Week’: Professor Anna Guseva on the International CAA Conference 2018

Associate Professor Anna Guseva from HSE’s School of History is a participant in the CAA-Getty International Program and attended this year’s College Art Association Conference.

The annual conference, which was held this year in Los Angeles on February 21-24, brought together approximately three thousand art critics and artists from all over the world. Professor Guseva shared her impressions.

Anna Guseva

CAA is one of the oldest professional communities in the world of art history (founded in 1911) and this year's conference was the 106th. The conference is not held on a specific topic and so it attracts researchers from a wide variety of fields, as well as museums and galleries. For art experts, it is an excellent opportunity to network with art historians, critics, museum representatives and artists from all over the world. Most participants, of course, come from the US and Canada, but this year there were also participants hailing from countries such as France, Britain, Italy, the Baltic States, the Netherlands and Spain, just to name a few. There are many lectures and presentations, so you have to literally run to get from one to the next, but it's a unique chance to learn about the latest trends in the world of science and the museum and gallery business. Some presentations were rather a surprise. The presentation on neurosciences and art gathered a huge audience, as did almost all the lectures devoted to the teaching of art, which were particularly interesting for me.

As a Fellow of the CAA-Getty International Program I gave my presentation at the pre-conference colloquium which was organized by this program. My presentation was devoted specifically to the teaching of Asian art history at HSE. It became clear that teachers of this subject from many other countries, from the USA to China, are dealing with the same issues and asking the same questions. The CAA-Getty International Program, which is supported by the Getty Foundation, brought together 15 new fellows from across the world this year and, over the past five years, has united scholarship recipients from South America, Africa, Europe and Asia. The conference was an unforgettable experience, offering complete immersion in the discussion of art history and teaching. It is a rare opportunity to talk about art history for an entire week.’

Next year, the CAA conference will be held in New York. Applications are already open.