The Institute of Visual Research (IVR) lies at the intersection of an exceptional cluster of art-related institutions of the University of Oxford – the History of Art Department, the Ruskin School of Art, the School of Anthropology and Museum Ethnography, the Pitt Rivers Museum and the Ashmolean Museum of Art and Archaeology. It provides a framework for bringing together researchers studying visual imagery in the broadest sense of the term, including those working within other disciplines.
Run by an interdisciplinary steering committee, the IVR provides a forum for visual research within the Humanities Division and beyond; it encourages collaboration between scholars, practitioners, curators, philosophers, and writers from across the Oxford community; it supports and encourages graduate student and early career fellow initiatives for interdisciplinary collaboration, and it fosters contact with other national and international research organisations.
The IVR’s mission is to explore the plurality of visual culture in all its aspects: its history, practice and politics of display, as well as its theoretical and philosophical dimensions, and its current state and impact in a global context. One of the IVR’s main objectives is to organize events that lead to new research initiatives of international competitiveness, including an annual topically-driven symposium and workshops that can serve as a barometer of current tendencies in visual culture, as well as two visiting professorships for which one practically-oriented and one theoretically-oriented leading figure in the field will be invited.