As a research centre, Art as Forum supports individual and collectively organized research, both in collaboration with international researchers and local cultural institutions. On a daily basis, the research of the centre is rhythmized by group readings, public lecturers, organization of conferences and summits, and editorial work in the Art as Forum publication series.

Belky Garcia ” Birding the Anthropocene No.2”
Photo credit: Belky Garcia ”Birding the Anthropocene No.2

Research projects


PhD fellow Amanda Grimsbo Roswall 

My research evolves around the French feminist essay of the 1970's and up until today with a special focus on how the essay moves between languages and across cultures and geographies in different formats. By studying the essays and how they affect feminist theory and practice in the US and Denmark, I ultimately seek to understand how ideas are shaped through space and time in coherence with their materiality.

At the moment, I work with essays of the Belgian feminist and psychoanalysist Luce Irigaray. I want to understand how her ideas of a new feminist language came into being and how these ideas influenced feminist theory in the US when the essays were translated from the original French into English in the beginning of the 1980's. Apart from Irigaray, I study the international influences of Danish writer and feminist icon Suzanne Brøgger.

Theoretical grounds: History of the Book, Comparative Literature, Media Studies. 

Supervisors: Tina Lupton (Engerom, UCPH) and Cecilie Ullerup Schmidt (IKK, UCPH)



PhD fellow Morten Chemnitz

The research project investigates the relationship between collectivity and inoperativity in late 20th century French poetry. Based on an analysis of the use of the first person plural, the nous, in four exemplary works of poetry published between 1963 and 1973, the project seeks to illuminate the reconfigurations of collectivity and communality that takes place in the poetry of the period. The literary historical perspective of the project is to situate and describe the formal aspects of this rethinking and its poetological consequences in poets such as Edmond Jabès, André du Bouchet, Anne-Marie Albiach and Claude Royet-Journoud.  The theoretical perspective of the project is an ambition to establish a critical dialogue between these poetic reconfigurations of collectivity and the reflections on community in terms of inoperativity developed from the early 1980's onwards in works by Maurice Blanchot, Jean-Luc Nancy, Giorgio Agamben and others.


















PhD fellow Mathias Hindkjær Overgaard.

This PhD project attempts to conceptualize a social dimension inherent in aesthetic experience by engaging a corpus of anthropological and sociological theories on rituals. Departing from the conception that such experiences are fundamentally relational, the project approaches the collectivistic and performative situation of the art encounter through the work of thinkers such as Émile Durkheim, Claude Lévi-Strauss, Victor Turner and Félix Guattari. While the correspondence between ritualistic notions of sociality and the performative aesthetics of theater and other “live” arts is well established, An Aesthetics of Ritual outlines two different trajectories which place the discussion outside the specific pairing of performative anthropology and artistic performances. 

This is done, firstly, by forwarding the thesis that experiences of communality is potentially at play in any aesthetic relation regardless of medium and genre; that it is the aesthetic relation in its modern guise as such that can be said also to inhabit an intersubjective modus operandi, and, further, that we can describe or nuance this mode through an understanding of the relation as a phenomenon that follows a ritualistic and therefore social logic. Secondly, and following the first, this is an invitation to propose another periodization. Going back to the birth of modern European aesthetics in the second half of the 18th century, the project contributes to a new genealogy that considers the experience-based encounter - which characterizes the so-called aesthetic regime - not just as a personal affect but also as a site for collective imaginaries and interactions. The thesis thus has a theoretical and methodological aim since the communal practices at work in rituals are taken as a vantagepoint to engage with aesthetic theory. And it has a historical agenda insofar as it relies on an alternative diachronicity which locates a ritualistic function in philosophical notions of art and aesthetics dating back to Jean-Jacques Rousseau and Immanuel Kant.  



Study groups



This research cluster focuses on how the social and relational mode of existence of art is expressed in the artwork itself. Through historical, analytical, and theoretical approaches to artworks and aesthetic processes, we aim to describe and better understand the specificity of art by considering is as an appearance, in a twofold sense of the word. On the one hand, artistic expressions present something which appears – a sensation, an experience, an insight that is being articulated in the material and medial form of the artwork. And on the other, the work of art itself appears as its sensual form interfaces toward a public or a beholder; it has a form that impinge on somebody.

Appearance, then, is about the instantiation of human experiences in and of the world, and it is about the event of presenting the work as a sensate reality that reach out to others. This research is theoretically driven as a reassessment of central positions in modern aesthetic theory, specifically aimed at highlighting how social (and societal) relations and forms of communality are mediated and negotiated in the dual processes of appearance. To this end, we mobilise approaches from a broad range of traditions, including social theory, critical philosophy, anthropology, feminism, black studies, and history of science , to gauge the roles and functions of art as appearance in a social field.



In the group we study the relational mesh of institutions, exhibitions, curating and other nodes that connect the production and reception of artistic objects and processes. We work from both historical and contemporary perspectives with issues of feminism, distribution, publics, collective practices, archives, economies, infrastructure, and institutional critique.

Our work is both empirical, practice based and theoretical and is carried equally by strong involvement with the institutional infrastructures we study and critical reflection of the transient forms of communality they produce. We are currently working on a special issue of a journal that examines the imaginaries of publics and commons related to the public art museums in the Nordic region.

Among others, we read and discuss texts by Édouard Glissant, Nora Sternfeld, Elke Krasny, Felix Guattari, Keller Easterling, Howard S. Becker, Geoffrey C. Bowker and Susan Leigh Star and Kate Lacey.

Members fall 2021: Line Ellegaard and Rasmus Holmboe



Informed by feminist theory, black studies, performance studies, infrastructural studies and media theory, we study the dependencies in cultural production, distribution and consumption: economies, policies, technologies, temporal frames, gatekeeping aesthetic norms, social and domestic relations, emotional labour, structural accessibility and notions of critique.

In the study group, we try to reflect critically on our own implication in such infrastructures of dependency as situated and embodied researchers in an institutional setting and the way this continuously shapes the patterns of attention and practices of border-drawing we reproduce as we read (and think, talk, write).

We currently read and discuss texts by Édouard Glissant, Fred Moten, Stefano Harney, Denise Ferreira da Silva, Judith Butler, Elena Esposito, Jill Stauffer, Elaine Swan, Sara Ahmed.

Members fall 2021: Solveig Daugaard, Cecilie Ullerup Schmidt, Amanda Grimsbo Roswall