Arts and Humanities Research Council Landscape and Environment Programme Conference 2009




An international conference on performance, landscape and environment<


Aberystwyth University, 18-21 June 2009



CPF Deadline: 1 December 2008





Landscape and performance, performance in landscape, performance about landscape, performance as landscape, landscape as performance…


Site-specific events, walking projects, land art, environmental activism, traditional customs, mediated visits, guided tours, leisure activities…


Phenomenology, performativity, non-representational theory, mobility, dwelling, embodiment, dynamism, affect…


Landscape and environment are currently of compelling cultural significance: as fields of scholarly research, sites of artistic endeavour and arenas of public concern. As both imaginative representations and material realities, they are the site of negotiation for the expression of complex ideas and feelings – about beauty, belonging, access to resources, relations with nature, the past and the future, making sense of the world and people’s place in it.


Performance is increasingly regarded not only as a creative practice and mode of representation but also as a vital means of embodied enquiry and as analytical trope.


Landscape as a concept includes a range of places: urban, rural and industrial, spectacular and overlooked, everyday and enchanting, remembered and contested, embodied, looked at, moved through, worked on, lived in…


Performance offers approaches to encountering and experiencing such places, to examining and understanding them, to characterising them, to re-imagining them…


A field opens in which scholarly and artistic practices inform each other, and new critical perspectives on, sensitivities to, and involvements with landscape and environment emerge: movement, visitation, engagement, immersion, dwelling, struggle become means to appreciate and exemplify the nature of places.


This four-day trans-disciplinary conference attends to the manifold and diverse relationships – actual and potential – between landscape, environment and performance; it draws together artists, practitioners and academics from such fields as geography, archaeology, anthropology, performance, music and dance studies, media studies, museology, cultural and environmental policy, folklore studies, art history.


These are amongst the themes and questions the conference will address:

  • How are landscapes lived on, in and through?
  • How are landscape and environment revealed, imagined, experienced, contested, animated and represented by, in and through performance?
  • How can performance inform, extend and enhance engagement with – and the interpretation and appreciation of – landscape and environment?
  • How can performance illuminate, explicate and problematise the multiplicity of attachments, meanings and emotions that resonate within and from landscapes – visual, aural and tactile?
  • What strategies and forms of performance exposition does working with landscape– as medium and scene of expression – inspire and necessitate?
  • What is the life of landscape and environment and how is it performed?


We welcome participation from all disciplines and from varying research approaches, both scholarly and practice-led.


We invite proposals for papers, presentations, dialogues, showings, interventions, performances and workshops in all formats.




Please send proposals and abstracts of no more than 300 words to

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Or to the organisers at:

Living Landscapes

Parry-Williams Building

Penglais Campus

Aberystwyth SY23 3AJ



Notifications of acceptance will be sent by 31 January 2009.




Professor Mike Pearson and Dr. Heike Roms,

Department of Theatre, Film and Television Studies, Aberystwyth University


Advisory Panel:


Professor Adrian Kear, Dr Carl Lavery, Lee Hassall and Esther Pilkington,

Department of Theatre, Film and Television Studies, Aberystwyth University

Dr Peter Merriman and Dr Heidi Scott,

Institute of Geography and Earth Sciences, Aberystwyth University


AHRC Landscape and Environment Programme Directorate:

Professor Stephen Daniels and Charlotte Lloyd, University of Nottingham


For further details including information on registration (available from 1 October) please see






Professor Mike Pearson

Professor of Performance Studies/Director of Postgraduate Studies

Department of Theatre, Film and Television Studies

University of Wales Aberystwyth

Parry-Williams Building

Aberystwyth SY23 3AJ


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