Josef Strzygowski

On 29-31 March 2012
in Bielsko-Biała, Poland
there had been held an international conference

- Josef Strzygowski and the Sciences of Art -

on the occasin of the 150th anniversary of his birthday


Department for Comparative History of Art
Institute for Cultural Studies
Marie Curie-Sklodowska University in Lublin

In cooperation with Prof. Dr. Heinrich Dilly (Univ. Halle/S.)


We cordially thank all our guests for their coming and for their important contribution to the scientific reflexion on the work of Josef Strzygowski.
The papers are going to be published in form of the conference proceedings.

Please find further information in pdf-format here
You can also download the preliminary conference agenda.

Please find detailed information on the arrival and accomodation in pdf-format here

The conference will take place in

Hotel Orbis MAGURA
ul. Żywiecka 93
43-300 Bielsko Biala
Tel. +48 33 8199 199 /fax -8199 159


Under MENU> PROGRAMME you can find a preliminary list of participants and presentations.
We would be grateful for receiving the abstracts of you papers by 15 January 2012 at the latest.

For download in pdf-format

Josef Strzygowski's 150th Birthday
International Scientific Conference in Bielsko-Biala (Poland)

The Austrian art historian Josef Strzygowski (1862-1941) was born on 7 March 1962 in Biala and died 70 years ago. His memory motivates us to dedicate a conference to a now nearly forgotten but once one of the best-known and controversial art historians.

In 1891 Josef Strzygowski founded the field of art history at the University of Graz. Following the death of Franz Wickhof (1853-1909), he succeeded him at the University of Vienna. He continued there until his retirement in 1933 with an institute of his own, which was then disbanded. Strzygowski's extraordinary academic influence manifests itself in diverse attempts to call him to different universities from New Delhi to Yale. In 1921 he conceived an institute in Warsaw according to his notions which, however, was not to be realised. Colleagues in Vienna denounced and found him (especially M. Dvořák and J. von Schlosser). However, he polarised the humanities and till today his ideas still find their echo. One cannot ignore him.

Strzygowski's activity included nearly all areas of art history (cf. Karasek-Langer, Verzeichnis der Schriften von J. Strzygowski, Klagenfurt 1933). Moreover, he was also one of the first to accept contemporary art, then ignored by most historians. Although his notions, especially his later works, in many ways are subjective, and often were exaggerated, they still had influence. The seminal power of his theses, attempted to overcome the Eurocentric vantage point. His 'World Art' (Kunst der Welt) which considers all from a single point of view was then opposed by many. His dedication to the Orient, to 'borderline' cultures found insufficient resonance. But the today's globalisation has re-awakened Strzygowski's discourse. One should reflect critically and open, and parse what can remain and what is not acceptable any more.

The time has come to reflect on the work and views of Strzygowski which the art historical community spalted. The content that would suffice for several conferences, forms a basis for discussion as well in a large circle as also in sections the number and character result from the suggested contributions. Therefore, this first call for papers is intended to determine your interest and invite you to name a topic (each to 30 minutes in congress languages).

We should be grateful for your response by 15 October 2011. A second circular shall follow with all necessary information.

Our conference is planned between 29-30 March 2012 (on 1 April an excursion is planned) in Bielsko-Biala. The conference fee (100 EUR) covers the organisation and the publication of the papers.

Questions and suggestions can be directed via email and telephone (see above: menu >CONTACT) to us. We will answer as soon as possible.

For the organisation committee

Prof Dr Piotr O. Scholz
Magdalena Długosz, MA (coordination)

© ZPHS 2011 | Magdalena Długosz