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Inspired by our host city’s pioneering history in the production of books, print and literature, we invite contributors to consider the art library’s role in the production of new ideas, practices, meanings and relationships, and their potential.


There are three ways you can contribute to the conference:

  • Presentations (25 minutes, including questions)

  • Workshops (30 minutes)

  • Lightning talks or poster presentations (10 minutes)

We welcome contributions that acknowledge and recognise achievements and challenges in response to the following themes:

Stimulation and Dissemination
  • The art library as publisher.

  • Art libraries’ role in commissioning new creative work.

  • The artist’s role in enriching the art library’s collections.

  • The impacts and by-products of the art library’s supply chain: for example, how can we grow collections more thoughtfully in response to the climate emergency?

  • Collaborative working and dialogue between artists, art librarians and curators.

Living Spaces
  • Encounters and exchanges – interactions with our existing and potential users.

  • The art library as a site of performance and participation.

  • Art libraries as exhibitors – the challenges and opportunities of display.

  • Neurodiversity, inclusion and accessibility in art libraries.

  • The art library’s role in access to learning and pedagogy.

Change and Critical Reflection
  • Critical art librarianship.

  • Decolonial, queer, and feminist reading of archive material; promoting equity in access.

  • The practising artist’s dialogue with the book.

  • Storage and access issues relating to digital artists’ books.

  • The relationship between the physical and the digital, image, and text, in art libraries.

Papers needn’t be scholarly, and we encourage the perspectives of artists, curators and any other practitioners who are engaging with the themes we’ve outlined.


We are seeking inspiring and provocative contributors with an interest in the questions and themes and how they relate to art and design libraries and archives.


We welcome submissions from art library workers, academics, artists, early career researchers and independent scholars.

To create a truly engaging conference, we are seeking presenters who bring a variety of perspectives and backgrounds. We particularly welcome submissions from people belonging to under-represented and marginalised communities and sectors, including but not limited to: BAME; LGBTQIA+; those with disabilities and those who are neurodivergent.


Proposals should be submitted by email no later than Friday 13 January 2023 to:

Please include the following information in your email:


  • Title of the proposal.

  • Presenter’s name, pronouns, email address, and professional or organisational affiliation (if any).

  • Type of proposal: presentation/workshop/lightning talk/poster (delete as appropriate).

  • Short abstract (200 words).

  • Short biography of presenter.


If you have any access needs that require you to submit your proposal in another format, please email and we can help you find a solution that works for you.

There will be some financial assistance available for participants in the form of bursaries.

We’ll let you know whether we have selected your proposal for the Conference by 17 February 2023.

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