We Need to Talk About Art: Ekphrasis Now

  • Saturday 6 July 2024

  • 9:00AM - 6:30PM


About this event

While James A. W. Heffernan's monograph, Museum of Words: The Poetics of Ekphrasis from Homer to Ashbery (1991), remains one of the most influential works on ekphrasis, his definition of ekphrasis as "the verbal representation of visual representation" is becoming increasingly inadequate.

Indeed, recent years have seen something of a return to its eighteenth-century meaning, more generally connoting description of, or commentary upon, any work of art in any medium. The growth in new media has led to new ekphrastic approaches which continue to inform and reframe more traditional practices.

Organised by Oz Hardwick, Leeds Trinity University, and Cassandra Atherton, Deakin University, this one day symposium is devoted to current thinking on ekphrastic responses to artworks in diverse media.


Timing What's happening Speakers
From 9:00am Registration and refreshments  
10:00am Welcome  
10:15 - 11:45am 'Moving words' presentations
  • Jennie Owen - Ekphrastic Poetry: Sculpture and Memorial as Inspiration
  • Anne Caldwell - Can Poetry and Dance Speak to Each Other
  • Amina Alyal - Sense Perception in the Ekphrastic Process: Dance Ekphrasis on Screen
'Learning encounters' presentations
  • Rachel Carney - Ekphrasis as a Process of Engagement with Art
  • Lauren Russell - When Poets Learn from the Visual Arts: Considering Cross-Disciplinary Origins in Several Contemporary U.S. Poets' Practices
  • Janée J. Baugher - Science Ekphrasis: Teaching and Learning Application
12:00 - 1:00pm 'Ekphrastic Lives' presentations
  • Lucy Wright - Dictionary of Motion: Francis Bacon's 'Picturing Ekphrasis'
  • Paul Munden - Freewheeling: Writing About Music, Nigel Kennedy Style
'Ekphrastic Identities' presentations
  • Jay Prosser - The Camphorwood Chest: Bringing to Life an Archive of Stories
  • Kane Holborn - Looking Behind the Canvas: Repairing Notions of (Dis)ability through the Tool of (In)verse Ekphrasis
1:00 - 2:00pm Lunch
2:00 - 3:30pm 'Ekphrastic Collaborations' presentations
  • Niloofar Fanaiyan - Ekphrastic Poetry and the Sacred: Collaboration in Worldbuilding
  • Oz Hardwick - Playing Different Tunes: Deep Listening and Ekphrastic Inspiration
  • Nathan Langston - Playing Telephone: Ekphrasis and a New Approach to Studying Intersemiotic Translation
'Looking at Gender' presentations
  • Francesca Pierini. Ekphrasis Across Genre and Gender: The Reappropriation of Pictorial Perspective in Three Fictional Texts
  • Charlotte Esme Frank. Ekphrasis as a Tactic of Obliquity in Contemporary Female Life Writing
  • Edwin Stockdale. 'Sometime a lovely boy in Dian's shape': Ekphrasis in the Stage History of Christopher Marlowe's Edward II
3:45 - 5:15pm 'Testing Boundaries' presentations
  • Patrick Wright - Cornelia Parker's Cold Dark Matter and the Ekphrasis of Grief
  • Jen Webb - Movement into Words, Words into Being: Yoann Bourgeois and Being in the World
  • Dominique Hecq - The Volte Face Gambit
'Other Angles' presentation
  • Anne M. Carson - The Detective's Chair
  • Jane Yeh - Dramatic Monologue and the Ekphrasis of TV and Film
  • Sarah Tremlett - Frame to Frames: Your Eyes Follow - Poetry Film and Ekphrasis
5:30 - 6:30pm Book launch - Dancing about Architecture and Other Ekphrastic Maneuvers - and reception
  • Oz Hardwick, Leeds Trinity University
  • Cassandra Atherton, Deakin University


9:00am-6:30pm, Saturday 6 July.


Village Hotel Leeds North, 186 Otley Road, Headingley, Leeds, LS16 5PR.

Who should attend?

Everyone is welcome. Please register to let us know you are coming.

How to book

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Further Information

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