Research Network for Transcultural Practices in the Arts and Humanities

About RNTP

The “Research Network for Transcultural Practices in the Arts and Humanities (RNTP)" is conceived as a critical, interdisciplinary and international association of researchers, who study processes of transcultural exchange and negotiation that are constitutive for multiple entangled art practices, agents, and institutions across various historical moments and locales.

Key questions to the network’s discussion:

  • What are the epistemological, historical, and socio-political conditions of transcultural artistic and aesthetic knowledge production?
  • Who are the agents and institutions embedded in and mediating these transcultural exchanges, how do they acquire, exert or loose affiliated power positions, and how do they shape, control or contest and change the knowledge produced?
  • How do transcultural practices and research perspectives alike allow us to deconstruct, de-center, re-think and transform Eurocentric apparatuses and discursive formations that have been constituting concepts and practices of art in modern times and across academic disciplines?

When addressing these questions the members of the network follow a two-fold methodological approach that relates the analysis of entangled histories and their institutional, discursive and practical effects with a self-critical reflection that takes into account our own discursive and historical situatedness. We are convinced that the continuous critical practice of examining naturalized regimes of truth opens up new perspectives allowing for constructive interdisciplinary exchange.

Membership structure and aims

RNTP provides an open communicative platform enhancing peer-to-peer dialogue and horizontal academic exchanges among its members. Its aim is to intensify research discussions and to grant innovative transcultural approaches greater visibility within the academic community as well as in public reception and relevant cultural institutions such as museums, universities and archives among others. Overcoming the institutional confines of projects, departments and universities, the network provides an international and interdisciplinary forum for open and critical debate on how to identify and cope with common pressing, often methodological problems of this research perspective.

Members in the network encompass artists from various fields such as the visual arts and choreography, curators and scholars working in multiple academic fields such as art history, aesthetics, cultural studies, film studies, literature, musicology, theatre studies and visual anthropology. The pronounced interdisciplinary set-up of the international network, which is guaranteed by the various scholarly and institutional backgrounds as well as multifold thematic projects of the network’s members constitutes a collective platform of diverse voices that are joint in their interest in transcultural studies.

Read more about how to become a member.

Activities

The conference “Present’s disjunctive unity. Constructing and deconstructing histories of contemporary cultural and aesthetic practices” at the House of World Cultures Berlin in November 2016 served as kick-off event for the network, bringing together network members from across Asia, Europe and the Americas. Individuals gave keynote presentations on their research, interspersed with small, round-table discussions on methodological questions. The conference also served as a platform for discussing the framework, goals and funding structure of the network.

Read more about past and up-coming activities.

The research network will sustain regular biennial gatherings organized by one or more members and hosted in changing research institutes chaired by senior members. Stay informed by visiting our website presenting its members and documenting the network’s activities. It is planned to establish smaller working groups, which elaborate on specific sub-topics and questions of transcultural research that will lead to separate conferences and/or joint publications.

The network’s start-up phase is generously funded by the DFG Research Unit 1703 “Transcultural Negotiations in the Ambits of Art” allowing the hosting of the present website and the initial administrative co-ordination.

Contact

Clara Giacalone (Network Coordination): transcultural@geschkult.fu-berlin.de 

Title image: "News From Far Away" by Victor Ehikhamenor (Courtesy of the artist)