09.11.11 - 12.11.11



Last updated November 8 with changes.

Wednesday November 9

09.00 – 10.00 Registration (Registration Desk, Lobby, Scandic Hotel)

10.00 Words of Welcome (Room: KP5)

10.15 – 11.45 Session 1
Panel 1A: Visualizing Ecology (Room KP10) Chair: Synnøve Marie Vik
Adam Brenthel, Lund University: Decision Theatres – the Dream of Spaces where Images acquire Agency
Synnøve Marie Vik, University of Bergen: A proposal for a New Ecology of Sight: Gustav Metzger
Catherine Summerhayes, Australian National University: Everyday Ghosts of the Real: Google Earth’s “Crisis in Darfur”

Panel 1B: Film Gestures (Room KP11) Chair: Anne Gjelsvik
Christian Refsum, University of Oslo: The Gesture of the Sentence Image in Lars von Trier's Antichrist
Anne Gjelsvik, Norwegian Univesity of Science and Technology: Adapting The Killer Inside Me and The Road for the Screen
Sara Beretta, Università Milano Bicocca: Reflexive Gestures: Images and Imaginaries from Chinese Independent Cinema

11.45-12.00 Coffee, Fruit

12.00 - 13.30 Session 2
Panel 2A: Porous Interfaces (Room KP 10) Chair: Nina Lager Vestberg
Nina Lager Vestberg, Norwegian University of Science and Technology: Gesturing towards Art: Creativity on Screen, Page and Canvas
Bodil Stavning Thomsen, Aarhus Universitet: Haptic Surfaces and Signaletic 'Images'
Ulrike Hanstein, Bauhaus-Universität Weimar: Retracing Movements: Gestures of Film

Panel 2B: Art Historical Resonances (Room KP11) Chair: Roni Grén
Giovanni Parenzan: FMSH, Paris / University of Paris 3 - Sorbonne Nouvelle: Caro's Bodily Abstractions and the Construction of Gesture in the Writings of Michael Fried
Roni Grén, University of Turku: Dismissing Iconological Practices: the Case of Georges Bataille and Aby Warburg
Johanna Vakkari, University of Helsinki: Identifying the Signified: Gestures of Sorrow in J. J. Tikkanen's Filing Card Material

13.30-14.30 Break (Open)

14.30–15.30 Keynote Lecture 1 (Room: KP5)
Libby Saxton, University of London: Passion, Energy and Matter: Godard's Gestures

15.45 – 17.15 Session 3
Panel 3A: Image, Gesture, Theory (Room: KP10) Chair: Mark Ledbetter
Pedro Monteiro, Universidade Federal de Uberlandia: The Precession of Images
Harri Laakso, Aalto University, School of Art and Design: Photographic Gesture Revisited

Panel 3B: Models and Mannequins (Room: KP11) Chair: Marie Gelang
Emma Engdahl & Marie Gelang, Örebro Universitet: The Rhetoric of Store-Window Mannequins
Merja Salo, Aalto University School of Art and Design: Distance and Seduction: The Performative Mode of Fashion Photography

Thursday November 10

08.30 – 09:30 Registration (Registration Desk, Lobby, Scandic Hotel)

09.30 – 10.30 Keynote Lecture 2 (Room: KP5)
Laura Marks, Simon Fraser University: Enfolding-Unfolding Aesthetics: What gesture draws an image into the visible; what gesture hides it away?

10.30-11.00 Coffee and Fruit

11.00 – 12.30 Session 4
Panel 4A: Aesthetic Gestures (Room: KP10) Chair: Asbjørn Grønstad
Asbjørn Grønstad, University of Bergen: A Cinema of Gestures: Claire Denis's 35 Shots of Rum
Brigitte Peucker, Yale University: The Gesture of Painting in Hitchcock

Panel 4B: Comics and Gesture (Room: KP11) Chair: Øyvind Vågnes
Øyvind Vågnes, University of Bergen: Bare Gesture: Joe Sacco's "The Unwanted"
Rikke Platz-Cortsen, Københavns Universitet: Comics as Agencement – Conceptualizing Space and Time
Svenn-Arve Myklebost, University of Bergen: The Gait of Meaning: Comic Book Gestures

12.30 - 14.00 Conference Lunch, Scandic Hotel

14.00 – 15.00 Session 5
Panel 5A: Documentary Gestures (Room: KP10) Chair: Jon Inge Faldalen
Gail Vanstone, York University, Canada: (Re)Visualizing Feminism: disrupting the documentary gaze
Jon Inge Faldalen, University of Oslo: The Power of the Pixel and Real Gestures: The Static Shot in Digital Surveillance: Technology, Aesthetics, Politics, and Theory

Panel 5B: Painting and Philosophy (Room: KP11) Chair: Ståle Finke
Ståle Finke, Norwegian University of Science and Technology: The Still-life as Impersonal Object – Merleau-Ponty and Embodied Vision
Jay Hetrick, University of Amsterdam: From Gesture to Pré-geste in the Art of Henri Michaux

15.15 – 17.15 Session 6
Panel 6A: Word and Image (Room: KP10) Chair: Marit Grøtta
Asta Kihlman, University of Turku: "How do pictures tell stories? How do signs function?"
Kurt Buhanan, University of California, Irvine: A-voiding Representation: Celan Troping the Negative
Marit Grøtta, University of Oslo: Reading/Developing Images: Baudelaire, Benjamin and the Gestures of Photography

Panel 6B: Double Gestures (Room: KP11) Chair: Sarah Greifenstein
Dennis Rothermel, California State University, Chico: Four Corners of Documentary-Film Capture of Artistic Creativity
Sarah Greifenstein, Freie Universität Berlin: (Cinematic) Expressive Movements in Screwball Comedies

17.15-17.30 Coffee

17.30 – 18.30 Keynote Lecture 3
Martin Jay, UC Berkeley: Photography and the Event (Room: Scandic Hotel)

20.00 Conference Bar, Landmark

Friday November 11

08.00 – 09.00 Registration (Registration Desk, Lobby, Scandic Hotel)

09.00 – 10.30 Session 7 (Room: KP10) Chair: Anna Sparrmann
Panel 7A: The Moralities of Looking
Johanna Sjöberg, Linköpings Universitet: Image a Child Identity
Anna Sparrmann, Linköpings Universitet: Seeing (with) the Body

Panel 7B: The Gestures of Landscape
(Room: KP11) Chair: Henrik Gustafsson
Frances Guerin, University of Kent: The Crisis of Landscape as Photography in the Early Work of Andreas Gursky
Janike Kampevold Larsen, Oslo School of Architecture and Design: Exhibiting land The aesthetic practice of the The Center for Land Use Interpretation
Henrik Gustafsson, University of Bergen: Splitting Sightlines: Immersion and Withdrawal in the Films of Claire Denis

10.45-12.15 Session 8
Panel 8A: Problems of Mediation (Room: KP10) Chair: Karin Becker
Karin Becker, Stockholm University: Performing Photography – Performing the News
Katherine Model, New York University: The Plasticity of the Documentary Interview Space
Patrik Sjöberg, Blurred Figures of Speech: The Speaking Subject in the Anonymous Interview

Panel 8B: Methodologies of Looking
(Room: KP11) Chair: Mark Ledbetter
Mark Ledbetter, The College of St. Rose: Voiceless: Gesture as Witness or The Un-image-able/Un-imagine-able
Max Liljefors, Lund University: Screen Flesh: Body-Image Interaction in the Medical Sciences
Varpu Rantala, University of Turku: Experimenting and sampling: Audivisuality as Research Method

12.15-13.30 Break (Open)

13.30-15.00 Session 9
Panel 9A: Ethnography and the Spaces of Seeing (Room: KP10) Chair: Pauline Ann Hoath
Etami Borjan, University of Zagreb: Image as embodiment of cultural knowledge
Pauline Ann Hoath, University of Bergen: Between the Lines
Isabella Radaelli, Università di Milano Bicocca: Working the Fields of the Image: The Power of Pictures in a Chinese Village

Panel 9B: Ethics and Forms of Iconoclasm
(Room: KP11) Chair: Peter Bengtsen
Brian Winston, University of Lincoln: An Apocalyptic Pony: Has the Time for a Bilderverbot come?
Virve Sarapik, Estonian Academy of Arts: Compulsion and Anxiety of a Picture
Peter Bengtsen, Lund University: Images of Risk Taking: On Graffiti as Process and Gesture

15.15-16.45 Session 10
Panel 10A: Film, Ethics, Memory (Room: KP10) Chair: Tonje H. Sørensen
Tonje H. Sørensen, University of Bergen: Of Silence and Remembrance: Knut Erik Jensen's  film Stella Polaris as  re-telling, re-remembering of the Second World War
Mia Hannula, University of Turku: Towards an Intercultural Aesthetics Shaping the Memory of Historical Trauma in Eija-Liisa Ahtila’s Video Installation Where is Where?

Panel 10B: Sensation, Process, Gesture (Room: KP11) Chair: Erika Larsson
Toni Hildebrandt, NCCR Iconic Criticism Eikones: Choreographology and the concept of iconic gesture
Geir Harald Samuelsen, Artist, My hands climbing
Erika Larsson, Lund University: Photographic gestures & situated belongings

16.45-17.00 Coffee, Fruit

17.00-18.00 Keynote Lecture 4
Wendy Steiner, University of Pennsylvania: The Real Real Thing: Model, Image, Interaction (Room: Scandic Hotel)

18.30 Artist talk Tauba Auerbach. Presentation as part of Bergen Kunsthall's lecture series Platform. At Bergen Kunsthall (Free Entrance).
20:00-22.00 Opening of Exhibitions ”No Sense of Place” and Tuaba Auerbach "Tetrachromat" at Bergen Kunsthall (Free Entrance).

20.30 Conference Dinner at Cornelia Restaurant

Saturday November 12

All Saturday's sessions at Scandic Hotel.

10.00 Keynote Lecture 5
Garrett Stewart, University of Iowa: Biblioclastic Gestures: The Sculpture of Negative Ekphrasis

11.00-11.30 Coffee, Fruit

11.30-13.15 Session 11
Panel 11 A: Photographic Gestures Chair: Mika Elo
Moa Goysdotter, Lund University: The Gesture that Froze: Photography’s Limitations as Transmitter of Objectivity
Mika Elo, Aalto University, Helsinki: Photographic Image as a Place of Thinking
Katriina Heljakka, Aaalto University, Helsinki: Toying with Images: How Playthings Become Avatars in Photographic Play

Panel 11B: Agamben and Aesthetic Practices Chair: Silvia Casini
Silvia Casini, Università Ca' Foscari Dipartimento di Filosofia e Beni Culturali: Freeing Gestures From Images in Selected Cinematic Experiences
Nermin Saybasili, Mimar Sinan Fine Arts University, Istanbul: The Magnetic

13.30-14.30 Session 12
Panel 12: Rhetorical Gestures Chair: Jens Kjeldsen
Christina Schmitt, Freie Universität Berlin: Metaphorically Structured Audiovisual Expressive Movements: Images as Rhetoric Gestures
Jens Kjeldsen, University of Bergen: Gestures in Images – Images as Gestures




Practical Information

Arriving in Bergen
Bergen Airport Flesland is approximately 30-35 minutes from the city centre (sometimes more during rush hour). There are direct flights to all major cities in Europe.

Conference Site
The conference will take place at Scandic Bergen City Hotel.

Our Conference Hotel, Scandic Bergen City, offers a limited number of rooms at reduced price:

Single Room: NOK 990 per night incl. breakfast
Double Room: NOK 595 per person per night incl. breakfast

Rooms must be booked directly from the hotel. Phone: +4755309080. E-mail:
You will need the following code: UIB091111. Booking only with credit card information.

We advise strongly that you consider booking accommodation well ahead of time, as November is an extremely busy hotel season in Bergen. Hotels are often fully booked. Here is a list of optional hotels:

Grand Terminus
Zander Kaaes gate 6, Bergen
Grand Terminus is the old railway hotel, and has a reputation for good food and stylish interior. It is also located right next to the Railway station, and no more than five minutes from the airport bus shuttle.

Rica Hotel Bergen
Christies Gate 5-7, Bergen
Rica Hotel is located right in the centre of Bergen and close to the University and conference area. It is known to be clean and have a large breakfast buffet.

Steens Hotel
Parkveien 22, Bergen
Steens is a smaller, privately owned hotel on the University campus. It has a good reputation, but is located at some distance from the Railway station and the various stops for the airport bus shuttle.
Radisson Blu Hotel Norge
Ole Bulls Plass 4, Bergen
Hotel Norge is centrally located and has a great reputation. The airport bus shuttle stops right outside, and the hotel is just a very short walk to the conference area.


Dietary Needs
For any questions concerning any dietary needs, please get in touch with Gjartrud Kolås at

The Official Website for Bergen and the Region
About Bergen, from Visit Norway
Explore the Fiords with Norway in a Nutshell

If you have questions or concerns, do not hesitate to get in touch with us at



Keynote speakers:

Martin Jay (UC Berkeley)

Laura U. Marks (Simon Fraser University)

Libby Saxton (University of London)

Wendy Steiner (University of Pennsylvania)

Garrett Stewart (University of Iowa)



Nomadikon intends to publish one or more anthologies of articles based on material from the conference. Only original and previously unpublished research will be considered for this book project, so if you wish to contribute, your conference paper should be written specifically for this occasion.


From the original Call for Papers:

As a critical and heuristic trope, the gestural galvanizes many of the most pertinent areas of inquiry in contemporary debates and scholarship in visual culture and related disciplines:

a) Ethics: Images and their values and affects.
b) Ecology: Iconoclastic gestures and spaces of conflict.
c) Experience: The human as acts of mediation/product of the gaze.
d) Epistemology: Archive, document, memory.
e) Esthetics: From visual essentialism to transesthetics and synesthesia.

As both a cultural phenomenon and a philosophical concept, the notion of gesture straddles several disciplines, such as anthropology, linguistics, performance, theater, film and visual studies. At once a codified and natural expression, the gestural is peculiarly and somewhat ambiguously situated between the realm of the discursive and the realm of the instinctual, between the culture-specific and the universal, and between the corporeal and the visual. As a mode of mediation the gestural also traverses the distinct, albeit interrelated spheres of the political, the aesthetic and the everyday. A space of visual articulation in which rhetoric and semiotics intersect, the gestural produces movements and energies of eloquence capable of generating ideas, perceptions and affect.

Within the context of the present event, we would like to suggest that gesture could also rewardingly be re-deployed as a metaphorical and figurative concept. As among others Hans Belting has shown, there is a rather intimate connection between bodies and images, and if bodies can convey gestures, maybe images can too. Thus, we would like to ask:
How may one speak not only of the gestures of the body but also of the gestures of the image? What constitutes gesturality in the image and, more broadly, what are the gestures of the aesthetic itself?

In W.J.T. Mitchell’s already canonical postulation, pictures must be considered animated beings with drives, demands and desires of their own. They are, however, also in a sense mute beings incapable of speaking the hegemonic vernacular of logocentric discourses. But while pictures cannot speak in the literal sense, perhaps they have a gestural language of their own?

The artwork and its complex gestures remains an under-explored theoretical topos in contemporary visual culture studies. In our turbulent mediasphere where images – as lenses bearing on their own circumstances – are constantly mobilized to enact symbolic forms of warfare and where they get entangled in all kinds of cultural conflicts and controversies, a turn to the gestural life of images seems to promise a particularly pertinent avenue of intellectual inquiry. In visual art, the gestural appears to be that which intervenes between form and content, materiality and meaning. But as a conceptual force it also impinges upon the very process of seeing itself, as Marie-José Mondzain has pointed out: ”The image is only sustained through a dissimilarity, in the space between the visible and the seeing subject. But is this space visible? If it were, it would no longer be a space. Thus, in the act of seeing, there is an invisible gesture that constitutes the space of seeing.”