IVLA 2016

IVLA 2016

IVLA 2016, Montreal: Engaging the Senses



The 48th Annual Conference of the International Visual Literacy Association (IVLA) will be held on October 5-8, 2016 at Concordia University, Montreal, Canada. The conference will be hosted by the Concordia Centre for Interdisciplinary Studies in Society and Culture in collaboration with the Department of Art Education, the Department of Design and Computation Arts, and the Centre for Sensory Studies.

IVLA’s annual conference provides scholars and researchers, teachers and students, artists, and other professionals with interests and activities relating to the multidisciplinary field of Visual Literacy, an opportunity to present their work and interact with peers. It also features keynotes by three luminaries. 

Theme: Engaging the Senses

Visual Literacy is already a field of multidisciplinary investigation. How might it also become a field of multisensory and/or intersensory investigation? For example, how does seeing as a way of sensing and making sense of the world differ from reading, or touching, or dancing? As Isadora Duncan famously remarked: “If I could tell you what it meant, there would be no point in dancing it!” ? Or, how can the insights derived from the study of Visual Literacy be extended to other modalities of sense, such as sound studies?

In asking these questions, the conference seeks to revisit and recuperate the original definition of “Visual Literacy.” In the words of John Debes (Co-founder of the IVLA), Visual Literacy refers to “a group of vision competencies a human being can develop by seeing and at the same time having and integrating other sensory experiences” (1969).  More recently, Brian Kennedy (Director of the Toledo Museum of Art) proposed that “Visual Literacy is the key to sensory literacy” (2014). This suggests that the past and future of Visual Literacy lies with engaging the senses.

2016 IVLA Conference Committee

IVLA President
Karen Tardrew (National Louis University)

IVLA 2016 Conference Chair
David Howes (Professor of Anthropology, Concordia University)

IVLA 2016 Conference Committee
Frank Cerreto (Professor of Mathematics, Stockton University), Co-Chair
Kathleen Vaughan (Professor of Art Education, Concordia), Co-Chair
Jung Lee (Professor of Instructional Technology, Stockton University), Co-Chair
Kristen Harrison (The Curved House), Web and Design Coordinator
Scott McMaster (Ph.D. Candidate, Art Education, Concordia), Graduate Student Representative
Natalie Doonan (Humanities, Concordia), Conference Coordinator