UNBOUND is a non-disciplinary multimedia journal of Discourse and Creative Practices,including art, design and other imaginative expressions. It aims to break out of traditional disciplinary territories and boundaries considered self-evident markers of knowledge by giving expression to ideas and everyday practices that operate simultaneously on contiguous and often overlapping domains.
We believe, like thought & everyday practices, scholarly discourse too should be boundless and open. Hence, non disciplinarity will free scholars and practitioners from constraints, normative requirements and open possibilities for radical thought. The goal is not an avant-gardist rejection of all that is traditional, inherited or historical. Nor is the aim to renounce philosophers, theoreticians and scholars of past and present. Instead, the objective is to rescue and highlight non-disciplinary ideas, frameworks, practices and theories from ancients and moderns alike and to think anew about theory and practices in art, design, humanities and the social sciences.
UNBOUND is a forum for all scholars and practitioners who generate discourse and engage in practices that blur the traditional distinctions between theory/praxis and that which cannot be classified into subjects and departments. It is a place for proliferating discourse, disseminating theoretically innovative and critical practices across multiple fields, and stimulating debates that are essentially non-disciplinary and defy accepted divisions. UNBOUND is a medium for those individuals who are not only interested in reevaluating inherited paradigms, concepts, labels and ideas that have come to dominate thought processes, but also for those who want to experiment with new ways of engaging, theorizing and articulating the historical and the contemporary.
Imaging by: Priyanka Mehta
01: SUMMER JUNE 16
Design and the Humanities: A Ground for Reimagining Disciplines
Submission Deadline: May 1, 2016
The humanities and the social sciences have been with us for more than a century. They have been interrogated from various positions—nationalist, nativist—for their values (cognitive or otherwise). They seem to have survived all these trials and yet questions about their value or usefulness have not gone away. In the face of the neo-liberal ideology that seems to have gripped even thinking about higher education, both their presence and the urgency to call these disciplines into question seem to have gone off stage. It is in this scenario that design has made its entrance, both in the marketplace and in academia. There is an obvious sense in which its entry is part of the neo-liberal ideology (it’s the new MBA—think of IDEOS setting up its branch in Mumbai) sweeping the globe. The consequence of the alliance of design-thinking and commerce in producing acceptance of new kind of products needs to be thought through. But design as an academic field—what it is, how it is taught, what it offers—raises questions that actually impinge on the attempt to reintorrogate the humanities and social sciences . One of the central issues for the former has been to articulate its role in the conceptualization of praxis. Now design as a mode of acting in the world cannot simply draw on whatever information is ready at hand. So we are confronted with the task of radically reimagining the ground to which both design and the humanities/social sciences nexus have to address themselves.
As befits a journal whose ambition is to free thinking from the distortions of discipline, we are looking for articles that help rethink the ground on which design along with humanities and the social sciences can actively reshape one another’s inquiries and praxes or contributors are free to choose the domain and their mode of interrogation and intervention. Download the PDF
02: MONSOON OCTOBER 16
Design in Contemporary India
Submission Deadline: September 1, 2016
India has been undergoing unprecedented change, albeit at dissimilar rhythms. Everything—spaces, places, sights, sounds textures, tastes, bodies and
movements—is being subjected to visible transformations. The magnitude of this new phenomenon that encompasses all dimensions of life is yet to be measured. Hence, we would like to venture, however provisionally, to describe, analyze,
understand and possibly advance theoretical concepts about the contemporary in India. In this adventure of mind and creative expression, Design will serve as Ariadne’s thread to guide us through the labyrinths of transformations.
Talking about design in India is challenging given that there are no common threads that we can follow. The design consciousness is non existant; there has never been an influential design movement or dominant style. Hence, we have set on the task of weaving the interconnected foreground and background together—analyzing design in India today and using design as a way of understanding the contemporary. For this dual endeavor we view design as both a surface practice and a configuration. As a practice of giving purposeful form to spaces and objects we want to bring together insightful ideas and observations about design offerings, choices and analyses of design trends from the perspective of form, function and eye appeal in India today. Following design as configuration we would like to include thought provoking arguments on the relation between the surface and structure,
contemporary circumstances, historical continuities/discontinuities, ideological exigencies and negotiations between tradition and modernity.
As a guide to both editors and contributors, we have identified the following areas for provisional grouping of the material.
Domestic Landscape | Spaces of Solidarity & Solitude | Leisure and Pleasure | Place of Work and Production | Support and Mobility | Design Education
This special issue seeks to explore approaches to study of history, memory and public space from various perspectives,interpretations and media. Recent engagement with the complex nature of heritage has focused on public places as repositories of memories and sites of heritage and historical experiences. Focussing on memorials, public squares, museums, temples, pilgrimage and heritage sites, such engagements have asked what these spaces mean to those who shape them, those who live there and those who visit them.
Public spaces, as we know are also structured by social, political and cultural transitions as also by diverse forms of cultural heritage. The creation of public space is often entwined with ideas of local identity and belonging. This issue will explore the ways in which the monumentalization of public spaces by the agencies of state are perceived. This issue will also explore if there are non-monumental forms of memorialization and the ways of understanding them in the context of public spaces.
The following questions are central to the relationships we wish to explore: How do we understand the discourses around remembering and forgetting within heritage spaces? In what ways do migrant cultures invest public spaces with new cultural meanings? In an increasingly globalized world, how is historical memory reconfigured within new spaces? Do public spaces play a role in reshaping memory along with historical understanding? In what ways are digital technologies altering the ways in which historically significant sites are perceived? Are such technologies changing the nature of our interactions with heritage sites? Contributors are free to explore any aspect of these questions in their chosen mode of intervention. Download the PDF
Prospective contributors may choose to submit their work in any of the categories listed below, as long as it follows the category requirements.
We prefer that your contribution conform to the theme identified for the issue.
Critiques: Well-researched articles that rigorously examine ongoing debates and legacies, point to new directions and articulate new ideas. Article length: 2000 to 5000 words. All Critiques will be subjected to blind peer review.
Praxis: Practitioner notes and notes on ideas or a singular topic of interest, written by the practitioners themselves or by others who expound practice of an artist/designer. Article length: 750 to 1500 words. All notes and short articles in the Praxis section will be subjected to blind peer review.
inClass: Notes about design, art and new humanities pedagogy and interesting classes/studios delivered. Article length: 750 to 1500 words. All InClass notes will be subjected to blind peer review.
Emerging Talent: This section is reserved for undergraduate and postgraduate students. Students may submit work under any of the above categories or submit their designs and artwork for review. For art and design review see submission guidelines below.
Curated: This category invites writing, multi-media presentations, films and other audio-visual forms that attempt to explore and subvert the flexibility and immateriality of cyberspace. Cyberspace, which came with the promise of being a new and radical space, has been colonized by commerce, employed as an easy instrument of overbearing surveillance and is, in many ways a replica of the real world. This category invites a fundamental rethinking of what cyberspace is.
1. We accept written work only in the English language.
2. The work should be original and unpublished.
3. All submissions should be done electronically as email attachments to email@example.com
4. Manuscripts should be submitted in Microsoft Word format. All manuscripts should consist of the following:
a. Font: Times New Roman 12 Point
b. 1 inch margin on all four sides
c. A title page with
i. Title of the Submission
ii. Name of the Author
iii. 200 word bio note of the author
d. Page 1 must have:
i. Title of the Submission
ii. 200 word abstract followed by text of the work
e. Images, Drawings and Illustrations
i. Do not embed any images in the manuscript.
ii. Leave space and include number of the image and caption.
iii. In a separate PDF file include low resolution (72 DPI with maximum width of 1200 pixels) images numbered and sequenced as they appear in the manuscript.
f. Naming convention for the submission file
i. FirstName_LastName_Noof the Issue_Category. Example: Jane_Doe_02_Critiques
ii. Image file in PDF format accompanying the manuscript should be named as Manuscript file, but adding “_Images” at the end. Example: Jane_Doe_02_Critiques_Images
g. Stylistic Guidelines
i. Please follow The Chicago Manual of Style guidelines while preparing the manuscript.
5. Submission to category Curated:
a. If you wish to submit your experimental work that explores and extends the possibilities of the web and cyberspace please send us a link along with a curatorial note of 500 words.
b. The curatorial note should follow the same formatting guidelines as manuscript and electronic file naming convention indicated above.
6. Submissions to Emerging Talent Category:
a. This category is reserved for students only. Students may submit work under any category listed above.
b. All student submissions must also follow all the guidelines.
c. Students who wish to have their work reviewed and featured in the journal should submit a link to a portfolio page, along with an explanatory note of 500 to1500 words.
d. Only a selected few submissions will be reviewed. We are looking for work that is Original, Innovative and Well Executed.