Unstable Norms – Mutable Forms

Challenging Normativity in Pre-Modern Visual Culture



23-25 Nov 2023

The international research-laboratory „Unstable Norms – Mutable Forms“ approaches the complex relationship between normativity and visuality by venturing into a multifaceted spectrum of different historical constellations in pre-modern imagery. Within a research-laboratory format, we seek to explore new perspectives regarding the (multi-)normative efficacy of visuality. We are going to discuss diverging cultural aspects of norms and normative processes as „models of reality“, where the abstraction and imagination of norms are not seen as opposed to, but as coinciding with diverse historical realities.

Five LABs are dedicated to the question how visuality and cultural practices bring forth normative orders. Contributions to the LABs are planned as actively collaborative in revising, reconsidering, and renegotiating aspects of the plurality of visuality and the field of norms, tracing aspects of recognition as well as deviance. Central to all research-labs is the hypothesis of a more complex picture of the relationality between normativity and visuality.