a2ru National Conference

a2ru 2022 National Conference: Exploring Artistic Research
November 3-5
University of Michigan
Ann Arbor, Michigan


The Alliance for the Arts in Research Universities (a2ru) advances the full range of arts-integrative research, curricula, programs, and creative practice to acknowledge, articulate, and expand the vital role of higher education in our global society. The a2ru national conference is an opportunity for practitioners and researchers from across the higher education spectrum to share innovations and perspectives in the arts.

Call for Proposals
Deadline: June 6

*As an a2ru member institution, proposals from UGA and other a2ru members will receive priority consideration.*

Formats: Lightning Talks, Presentations/Panels, Workshops, Storytelling

TRACK ONE: Exploring artistic research

Topics in Track One connect directly with the 2022 conference theme through the lens of the arts, design, performance, and other art-based practices, as well as the practice and teaching of artistic research. Presentations and workshops should contribute to the conference by addressing one of the following themes or related issues: artistic research, arts-based research, collaborative research involving arts methodologies, ways of knowing that are unique to the arts, the landscape of artistic and arts-based research, “disrupting” and revisiting accepted definitions of research, the status of research in arts schools, and addressing differences in global perspectives on the arts and research.

TRACK TWO: The arts and design in higher education

Topics in track two are broadly concerned with creating and supporting art-based practices, developing tools, and presenting ideas about the arts and design in the context of academic research and teaching cultures. Presentations and workshops should contribute to the conference by addressing one of the following themes: modes of collaboration; interdisciplinary stewardship; equity; arts integration on campus; promotion and tenure; and insights, cultures of evidence, impacts case-making, and dealing with data.


Researching While BIPOC: Identity and Artistic Research

Last year, in addition to making a case for art, we invited people to share presentations that advocated for a reexamination of which art and artists are viewed as important to the arts field. As we come together this year to think about what artistic research is, how it is practiced, and what place it might hold in the university, we want to continue to question the prioritization of western art and artists. Professor Barb Bolt writes, “the centering of oneself within the artwork’s production is the most important factor in giving voice to what has become known…[as] artistic research.” What do you do, however, when your “self” has been marked as subordinate to other selves? How do you center your “self” without becoming a token? This year’s Steps Towards Change panel invites proposals from students grappling with these and related questions. We also welcome proposals from students who seek to challenge the idea that the centering of oneself is essential to artistic research.

Possibilities for Anti-racist Artistic Research, A Dialogue between Administration and Faculty

Universities across the United States are working towards instituting DEI strategic plans, and while university-wide initiatives play an important role in changing campus culture, it is important that individual schools and departments make clear their commitment to anti-racist practices. Conversations between administration and faculty are a key step in this process. a2ru wants to provide a space for such a conversation. We anticipate a robust discussion that reaches into various aspects of the relationship between administration and faculty, but briefly, we invite discussants who are interested in talking through what faculty members need to practice anti-racist artistic research, how administration can support faculty, and what administration needs from faculty to best support them. We also welcome faculty and administration who have served on DEI committees and/or led DEI initiatives within their university.