2016 San Francisco, April 2 – 3

2017 Adelaide, July 3 – 6

2017 Melbourne, July 11

2017 Sydney, July 12 & 15

ArtSense logo


Key Dates & Links

  July 4-6, Adelaide
  July 11, Melbourne
  July 12 & 15, Sydney
  Call for Papers
   AAP Conference


  35m + 20m Q&A
  Full written paper
  Submit by email
  Closed 30/11/2016
   Travel Grant

AAP logo

The Arts & Imagination: the role of metaphors, tropes & images in shaping experience & guiding action



@ the University of Adelaide & the Art Gallery of South Australia


@ the Victorian College of the Arts

JULY 12th & 15th, 2017  •  SYDNEY, NEW SOUTH WALES

@ the Art Gallery of New South Wales

The second ArtSense workshop will be held in Adelaide, South Australia, from July 3-6, 2017, as a stream within the Australasian Association of Philosophy (AAP) Conference. On July 11th there will be an event in Melbourne, Victoria, at the Victorian College of the Arts. Further events will then take place in Sydney, at the Art Gallery of New South Wales, on July 12th &15th. Details are to follow shortly on the Melbourne event; for information on the others, see below.

Organised through the Australian Research Council funded ArtSense – Taste & Community project, the workshop is also sponsored by the American Society for Aesthetics (ASA).


Now closed, submissions were due: November 30 2016

Papers will address topics which bear upon the way cultural artifacts acquire meaning and value as an example of the process by which communities establish shared terms of reference.

Length & Format
The organisers invite proposals for presentations of 35 mins (+ 20 mins Q&A). There are 3-4 slots available. The proposal should be sent as a full length paper (reading time 35 mins) suitable for anonymous review.

Travel Grant
A travel grant of up to $2000 was made available to the best paper by an ASA member graduate student or untenured faculty who would not otherwise be able to access travel funds for this meeting. The grant has been awarded to Eleen M Deprez (Kent, UK).

Deadline for proposals was 30th November 2016. Address any enquiries to:

It is an assumption of our approach that bringing philosophers together from different areas and traditions within philosophy has immense potential for furthering understanding of the problems we seek to address within philosophy, and for philosophy’s relevance to the community more broadly.

Adelaide Workshop


JULY 3-6 2017
The Arts and Imagination workshop is a four day stream within the Australasian Association of Philosophy (AAP) conference, July 2-6 2017.


  • Mohan Matthen (Toronto)
  • Sean Cordeiro (visual artist)
  • Jenny McMahon (Adelaide)
  • Cynthia Freeland (Houston)
  • James Phillips (UNSW)
  • Elizabeth B. Coleman (Monash)
  • Nicolas Bullot (Charles Darwin)
  • Nancy Sherman (Georgetown)
  • Paul Guyer (Brown)
  • Robert Sinnerbrink (Macquarie)
  • Claire Healy (visual artist)
  • Daniel von Sturmer (Monash)
  • David Macarthur (Sydney)
  • Michael Newall (Kent, UK)
American Society of Aesthetics travel grant, for best essay (postgraduate students and non-tenured staff), awarded to: Eleen M Deprez (Kent, UK)


  • Melvin Chen (Nanyang Technological University, Singapore)
  • Joseph Kassman-Tod (Berkeley)
  • Matteo Ravasio (Auckland)
  • further speakers to be advised …
Michael Newallspeaker information

JULY 3 @ 2pm – 5pm


Myths, metaphors and tropes: the narratives which guide studio practice


This session is hosted jointly with the J.M. Coetzee Centre for Creative Practice at the University of Adelaide. Taking place in the Auditorium of the Art Gallery of SA (behind the Gallery cafe), this is a free public event, & registration at the AAP conference is not required. All welcome; tea & coffee will be provided. There will be three presentations:


Michael Newall, Director of Learning & Teaching for the School of Arts, and Director of the MA in Philosophy of Art & Aesthetics at the University of Kent, Canterbury, UK, will speak on the role of critique in studio practice.

  About Michael    Website


Claire Healy & Sean Cordeiro, visual artists who have received considerable international recognition for their work, will speak on the source of their ideas.

  About Claire & Sean    Website


Professor Jennifer Rutherford, Director of the J.M. Coetzee Centre for Creative Practice at the University of Adelaide, & author of Zombies (London, Routledge, 2013), will speak about the way metaphors are adopted from literature and come to dominate the concepts by which we understand experience.

  About Jennifer    Website


JULY 4 @ 6pm


Afterwar: Contemporary and Ancient Lessons on Moral Injury and Healing

Nancy Sherman is to deliver the annual Alan Saunders memorial lecture, which will be recorded by the ABC, and featured on the Radio National network. The lecture draws on Nancy’s recent book Afterwar & outlines a philosophical view of moral injury and moral repair.



JULY 5 @ 9am


Kant on the Rationality of Morality

Paul Guyer is to deliver a keynote address to the AAP 2017 conference, exploring Kant’s claim that morality is founded in pure practical reason.



JULY 6 @ 9am


Dancers and Soldiers Sharing the Dance Floor: Reflections on Emotional Expression

Nancy Sherman is to deliver a keynote address to the AAP 2017 conference, looking at the nature of emotional expression in ordinary human interaction and in dance, and arguing that ‘dancers and soldiers have shared the dance floor for centuries’.



JULY 5 @ 7pm

  An AAP 2017 social & networking event will be held at the National Wine Centre.



JULY 6 @ 7pm

  The AAP 2017 Conference Dinner will be held at Sanctuary Adelaide Zoo.



Melbourne Event @ Victorian College of the Arts


JULY 11th

This event is part of the 150 year anniversary celebrations of the VCA & its predecessor institutions (see ART150.)


Time, venue & other details for this event are to be posted shortly.


  Watch this space!




Sean Lowry (Head of Critical and Theoretical Studies in Art, VCA)

Jenny McMahon (University of Adelaide)




Sydney Events @ AGNSW


JULY 12 @ 6.30pm


Do Portraits Require Posing?

Professor Cynthia Freeland will give a public lecture at the Art Gallery of NSW, in the lead-up to the Archibald Prize. The talk will be recorded and available through the AGNSW’s    SoundCloud site.


Entry Fee $15.00 & $10.00 (student, concession or member)



In my book  Portraits and Persons (Oxford, 2010), I claimed that the subject of a portrait must fulfill a requirement that I call “posing.” This requirement seemed essential to me to capture the idea that a portrait involves a kind of collaboration between artist and subject. However, it does raise various problems. It rules out counting various things as portraits that some people think should be included, such as depictions of (i) animals, (ii) infants, (iii) people caught unawares (in candids), and (iv) “beneath-the pose” revelatory images. Also, the question is asked whether posing is required given that we classify some images of long-dead people (like Cleopatra) as “portraits” of them. In this talk I will revisit the posing requirement and try to defend it, especially for cases (iii) and (iv), considering various examples from different media along the way.




JULY 15 @ 11am-5pm


Symposium: Where is the artwork?

Philosophical Perspectives on Art

Philosophers do not find art where the facts congeal or at the point where personal associations take flight. They look for art in the reflection that the work occasions. In this case, these reflections are object directed. In her 2017 manuscript Aesthetics and Communication, philosopher Jane Kneller writes that reflection on art is thought to create ‘spaces of shared feelings and expanded interactions with the unfamiliar, the new and different’.


Titled after a phrase used by Melbourne artist and theorist, Sean Lowry, this symposium analyses five artworks in the Gallery’s collection under a philosophical lens. Five Australian and International philosophers will each present on selected artworks in the gallery space, demonstrating their own philosophical perspective on art and reflection. Papers will be followed by responses from invited commentators, including both artists and philosophers.


Entry is by invitation only, & numbers are strictly limited. If you are interested in attending please contact Prof Jenny McMahon.


Entry Fee $10.00



Prof. Jenny McMahon (University of Adelaide)



20 mins talk, 20 mins Q&A, 5 mins changeover


11.00 – 11.30



11.30 – 12.10

  Michael Newall


12.15 – 12.55

  Paul Guyer


13.00 – 13.40

  Cynthia Freeland


13.45 – 14.50



15.00 – 15.40

  David Macarthur


15.45 – 16.25

  Robert Sinnerbrink


16.30 – 16.45

  Jenny McMahon
  Closing Remarks




   Elizabeth B. Coleman

   Mohan Matthen

   Jenny McMahon

   Daniel von Sturmer

   Claire Healy

   Sean Cordeiro

For further information

If you would like more information about the workshop, or about the ArtSense project in general …

Contact us

The ArtSense Taste&Community project is funded by the Australian Research Council. The project is directed by Jenny McMahon, and the other researchers are Sean Cordeiro, Cynthia Freeland, Paul Guyer, Claire Healy, Mohan Matthen, Robert Sinnerbrink, and Daniel von Sturmer. The project aims to develop a framework for understanding the perception of meaning and value as a response to cultural artifacts.

ArtSense logo
The workshop is organised through the ArtSense Taste and Community
research project, funded by the Australian Research Council for 2015 – 2017.
ASA logo

The workshop is also sponsored by the American Society for Aesthetics (ASA)

AAP logo

This workshop runs as a 4 day stream within the Australasian Association of Philosophy (AAP) conference.

Uni of Adelaide logo
ARC logo