The American art critic Dave Hickey has stated on numerous occasions that the emerging subjects of debate that change the discourse of art are driven by ennui. "We don't stop talking about something because we have figured it out, but because we get bored and the terms of the discussion become threadbare." As such, the next subjects of debate tend to be those that are the most mysterious and incomprehensible; the ones most removed from recent memory. The emergent us likely to come from the least acknowledged, mined, or understood condition of the present - those things that we dare not say or fail to mention - the subjects that go unspoken. The Unmentionables Symposium will serve as a provocation for marginalia, taboos, illicit ideas, and under theorized issues to be let out of the woodwork; providing unrestricted terrain to explore notions of critical interiority and the constructed environment.

The Department of Interior Architecture at Woodbury University invites you to submit abstracts that explore notions of critical interiority and the constructed environment. Abstracts will be double-blind reviewed by a panel of Woodbury University reviewers who will recommend acceptance for presentation at the 2017 Unmentionables Symposium to be held in Los Angeles, April 7-8, 2017.

Authors are encouraged to submit scholarly abstracts and research driven design projects that explore a wide range of topics covering history, theory, practice, interdisciplinary inquiry, and any other subject of current discourse. Submissions are expected to be original research that has not been presented previously at other scholarly events or published at other venues. 

In order to promote a diversity of voices, a maximum of 2 abstract submissions per author is allowed. This also includes coauthored work. 

Abstracts will be selected for a series of three panel discussions and formatted for a 15 minute presentation per panelist.



Identification: In order to provide a blind review, submissions must not include author(s) name(s), institutional affiliation(s), or any other form of identification, including, but not limited to identifying photographs. 

All submissions must be made by email. The author(s) has to attach 2 separate documents in word format to the email. The first document is the abstract, which must be in MLA format and anonymous. The abstract should not exceed 250 words in length and can be accompanied by a maximum of 3 images. The second document must contain the name and affiliation of the author(s), as well as a brief bio, not to exceed 600 characters. The maximum size of the email, including attachments, can not exceed 3Mb. 

Submissions that do not comply with all requirements will be disqualified from review. 

Please note that the papers selected for presentation have to be submitted in their final form by February 5th, 2017. Ownership clearance of images, as well as correct image credits are the responsibility of the individual author(s). 



$25.00 for each submission. Payable below:

Submit Payment


All presentations will be held in the format of panels. A moderator will introduce the connecting topic, followed by 20 minute individual presentations by the chosen authors, concluding with an open discussion. 



September 15, 2016: Call for Abstracts issued

December 15, 2016: Abstracts received no later then 11:59 Pacific Standard Time by email

January 15, 2017: Email notification of abstract acceptance 

March 1, 2017: Submission of 15 minute symposium presentation to the review committee

April 7-8, 2017: Unmentionables Symposium to be held in Los Angeles, CA



Contact the Abstract Review Coordinator with any questions
Heather Peterson, Woodbury University