Sheldon Museum of Art Main Content

Person of Interest: A Symposium

Call for Proposals

The genre of portraiture has a substantial history in art making. Artists and viewers have found portrayals of the human form to be especially evocative because the body, even when abstracted, can convey a wide range of meanings. How one chooses to present oneself — in dress, adornment, gestures, or movement — communicates powerful messages about one's identity.

Sheldon Museum of Art invites University of Nebraska–Lincoln students, faculty, and staff to submit proposals for short papers and creative projects, in any media, that explore the complexities involved in the simultaneous construction and performance of one's identity for “Person of Interest,” a symposium related to the similarly titled exhibition. Proposals are due February 1, final presentations and projects will be featured on Sheldon’s website beginning March 19, and the museum will host a round-table discussion and reception on April 2, 2021.

Submissions might respond to questions about self-fashioning, cultural memory, gender identity, or performance of identity. They might address issues of race and representation, institutional power, lived experience, or intersectionality. Projects that are a collaboration between multiple people are welcome. We particularly encourage proposals for papers and creative projects that are in dialogue with, or inspired by, artwork in the exhibition Person of Interest.

Selected final papers and creative projects will be featured on Sheldon’s website, starting mid-March. The symposium will culminate in a roundtable discussion and reception on Friday, April 2. If possible, the discussion will take place in person at Sheldon and be live-streamed. Alternatively, if needed due to health and safety concerns, the roundtable discussion will be fully online.

To learn more about Person of Interest, visit the museum and/or explore our online resources, which include a learning guide and a virtual tour of the exhibition.


Must currently be affiliated with the University of Nebraska–Lincoln.

Submission Details

One submission per person. If the proposal is for a collaborative project, one person should submit the proposal on behalf of all collaborators.

Submissions should be sent via the form below by February 1, 2021 at 9:00 AM.

All proposals should include a title and a 250-word written abstract of the proposed paper or creative project. Up to two images, short video or audio clips, etc. may also be included to support your written abstract.

When drafting your proposal, please note that the maximum length for final papers and time-based projects will be 7 minutes.

Note: We cannot accept physical works. Please submit the appropriate digital file of your work (.pdf, .doc, .jpeg, .tif, .mp3, etc.). The maximum file size is 1 GB. If your file exceeds 1 GB, include an accessible link to your work with your written abstract.

Use the following structure to label your files: Lastname_Firstname.
• Example: Hanas_Erin.pdf

If you are including multiple files, add a number to the file name.
• Example: Hanas_Erin_1.pdf and Hanas_Erin_2.jpeg

Participants are expected to adhere to the university policy on academic integrity, as outlined in the Student Code of Conduct.


  • February 1, 2021, 9:00 AM: Proposal deadline
  • February 12: Selected presenters notified
  • March 14: Video/audio recording or digital images of final papers and projects submitted to Sheldon
  • March 19: Final presentations and projects featured on Sheldon’s website
  • April 2: Round-table discussion and reception

Questions? Contact Erin Hanas at

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Files must be less than 1 GB.
Allowed file types: gif jpg jpeg png bmp eps tif pict txt rtf html pdf doc docx odt ppt pptx odp xls xlsx ods xml avi mov mp3 ogg wav bz2 dmg gz jar rar sit tar zip.