The Interdisciplinary Study Group in British Art is an association which brings together postgraduate students as well as professionals, researching British Art in the modern period. It aims to bring together students and researchers from different disciplines: art history, history, museum studies, sociology, and any area of the humanities whose work focuses on British art from the 19th century to the present.
The chronological framework for the research and activities of the association stretches from the 19th century to the present It encompasses the history of modern art in Great Britain, up to the more recent emergence of conceptual and postmodern art at the forefront of the British contemporary artistic scene. Research will be focussed on the territory of the United Kingdom. On the one hand, this geographical frame underpins the development of artistic practices related by similar structures and institutions, by shared national cultural policies, and by artistic exchanges facilitated by spatial proximity. On the other hand, the frame itself is also necessarily fragmented, into different regions and localities functioning on different scales, and into the urban (and rural) entities in which the production, exhibition and reception of art is specifically set. From this perspective, research can be equally valid focusing on precise case studies individually analysed or, conversely, taking a comparative approach. One aspect implied by this geographic frame in the history of the United Kingdom leads to the often conflicting relations between the capital, London, and the provinces, between centres and peripheries, in between local, regional, and national identities, and the artistic and aesthetic implications of these.
In this overall mesh of concerns, specific attention will be paid to the current situation with regard to contemporary and modern British art, and to initiatives in curating and their implications: these may well concern periods prior to the 19th century, as long as they relate to contemporary developments in the study or (re)presentation of British art.