Article I. Name.

The name of this association shall be A.S.A.P.: The Association for the Study of the Arts of the Present, hereafter referred to as A.S.A.P. or the Association.

Article II. Purpose.

The purpose of the Association shall be educational, to promote intellectual exchange between persons who study, perform, and write about the contemporary arts including literature, the plastic arts, music, film, photography, theater and performance arts, architecture, graphic arts, and the digital or mixed-media arts.

Article III. Membership.

All persons interested in the purposes of the Association may be admitted to membership by payment of dues as established by the Motherboard.

Article IV. Governance Structure: Executive Council.

The Executive Council of the Association shall consist of the Motherboard and the chairs of Association Interface Committees.

Article V. Governance Structure: Motherboard.

A “motherboard” is the central or primary circuit board making up a complex electronic system such as a computer. A.S.A.P. re-conceives the notion of “executive committees” within static organizational hierarchies as the systems metaphor of “motherboard.”

The Motherboard of A.S.A.P. shall consist of the officers. The Motherboard shall be responsible for advancing the interests of the Association and implementing its policies in the intervals between meetings of the Executive Council and those of the general membership. The Motherboard will meet with Interface Committees in initial planning of the annual conference and to conduct Association business. The Motherboard will set dues and policies for the Association, and appoint members to the Association’s Advisory Board; appoint the Treasurer, Secretary, and Communications Coordinator; and appoint chairs to Interface Committees as needed.

Article VI. Officers.

The officers of A.S.A.P. shall be a President, a Vice-President, a 2nd Vice-President, a Past President, a Treasurer, a Secretary, a Communications Coordinator, the Journal Editor(s), and a Member-at-large. Officers must be members of the Association. Ordinarily there will be a line of succession from 2nd Vice-President to Vice-President, from Vice-President to President, and from President to Past President. Qualifications for nomination as 2nd Vice-President will include at least 1 year of Association membership and attendance at a minimum of 1 Association conference and/or symposium in the prior four years.

  • The President shall serve a one-year term and shall call and preside at meetings of the Motherboard, at general meetings of the Association, and at the Association’s business meeting/luncheon at the annual conference or symposium. The President shall serve as co-chair of the conference Program Committee (with the conference host and other appointed members); serve as an ex-officio member of all Interface Committees of the Association; and work to create new initiatives for the Association. The President solicits nominations for the Advisory Board, communicates with the Association’s membership and Advisory Board about the activities of the Association, and oversees the election of its members by the officers of the Association. On expiration of the President’s term, the Vice-President completing a year in that office shall become President and the President will become Past President.
  • The Vice-President shall serve a one-year term as President elect, shall preside at meetings in the absence of the President, shall chair the Elections and Prizes Committee, and shall organize all Association elections.
  • The 2nd Vice-President shall serve a one-year term as Vice-President elect, fulfill duties of the Vice-President in his/her absence, sit on the Elections Committee, and participate on the Program Committee or other committees as needed.
  • The Past President shall serve a one-year term. The Past President runs and helps adjudicate the annual ASAP Book Prize, is an ex-officio voting member of any other committee to which s/he is appointed, and advises the Motherboard and the Executive Council as ex-officio voting member.
  • The Secretary shall be appointed by the Motherboard to a four-year renewable term, but nominations for this postion may be solicited from the membership through election processes and/or social networking sites. The Secretary keeps the minutes of the meetings; oversees and works with the Treasurer and Communications Coordinator to maintain online and off-line archives of the Association’s history and activities, and works with the journal editors to maintain membership lists.
  • The Treasurer shall be appointed to a three-year renewable term and is financial officer of the Association. The Treasurer is empowered to handle bank accounts for the Association and shall provide periodic reports on the finances of the Association to the Motherboard and at the Association’s annual meetings as well as make recommendations to the Motherboard for securing the Association’s financial interests.
  • Communications Coordinator: The Communications Coordinator oversees and maintains the communications outlets of the Association, including its listserv, online mailbox, and social networking systems.
  • Journal Editor(s): The Journal Editor(s) (up to 2) are editors-in-chief of the Association’s peer-reviewed scholarly journal and work in concert with a scholarly press to extend the mission of the Association. The journal editorship has only one vote on the Motherboard. The journal editor(s)-in-chief will edit the journal, communicate with the host scholarly press, report on journal activity to the Association, attend A.S.A.P. symposia and conferences to solicit potential articles from presenters, and serve as ambassadors for the journal at other scholarly conferences.
  • The Member-at-Large shall be a member of the Motherboard elected by membership vote for a term of 2 years. The member-at-large shall be responsive to the interests of the ASAP membership, periodically soliciting their concerns and recommendations and representing them through participation in Motherboard meetings; shall be encouraged to propose initiatives of his/her own or from the ASAP membership to the Motherboard for consideration and discussion; and shall be a member of the graduate student essay prize selection committee.

Article VII. Terms of Office.

Term of office begins in all instances in late fall, following elections. The Association’s principle officiating members will serve the following terms:

  • President: one-year term
  • Vice-President: one-year term; President elect
  • 2nd Vice-President: one-year term; Vice-President elect
  • Past President: one-year term
  • Secretary: appointed by Motherboard; four-year term, renewable
  • Treasurer: appointed by Motherboard; three-year term, renewable
  • Communications Coordinator: appointed by Motherboard.
  • Member-at-Large: two-year term.

Article VIII. Nomination and Election of Officers.

Any Association member in good standing shall be eligible for election within the terms set for each office. Election of the 2nd Vice-President and any vacant Motherboard offices shall be conducted either at a regular meeting of the Association or by mail or online ballot, as the Motherboard shall determine. Ties shall be decided by run-off elections. The President, Vice-President, 2nd Vice-President, and Member-at-Large shall be elected by vote of the Association membership, though these positions may succeed one another without membership vote. Candidates for President must have served a full term as Vice President or equivalent service in the organization. Qualifications for nomination as 2nd Vice-President will include at least 1 year of Association membership and attendance at a minimum of one Association conference and/or symposium in the prior three years. If a member of the Motherboard is elected 2nd Vice-President before his or her other term of office is completed, the Motherboard may appoint a new member to the vacant position until the next election cycle. If any officer resigns before his or her term of office is completed, the vacancy shall be filled until the next election cycle by a majority vote of the remaining members of the Motherboard.

Article IX. Interface Committees.

An interface is a point of communication at which independent systems or diverse groups interact; A.S.A.P. re-conceives subcommittees within static organizational committees as interfaces within dynamic networks.

The work of the Executive Council shall be informed by the work of the following Interfaces: Conference Program, Elections and Prizes, and International & Multidisciplinary. Each Interface Committee shall strive to include three to five members appointed by the appropriate Chair.

  • The Conference Program Interface Committee will be co-chaired by the incumbent A.S.A.P. President and the host institution conference organizer(s) and will include any Association members nominated by the committee chairpersons and approved by the Motherboard. The committee is responsible for creating a conference or symposium theme/title and call for papers; publicizing the cfp through its website, listserv, and other publicity venues; working to ensure that the program schedule and content conforms to the mission of the Association; working to ensure that the program schedule conforms to the conference rules and restrictions for panels, roundtables, and seminars; and contributing program content for the A.S.A.P. luncheon at the conference.
  • The Elections and Prizes Interface Committee, chaired by the Vice-President, shall be responsible for soliciting nominations for upcoming officer elections, presenting to the Motherboard a slate of candidates for the annual election of officers, and for conducting elections with the oversight of the Motherboard. The Elections and Prizes Interface also works with the Past President to conduct the A.S.A.P. book prize and the Member-at-Large to conduct the ASAP Graduate Student Essay Prize, oversees monetary or honorary awards, and coordinates with the Treasurer for fundraising for, and distribution of, prizes or prize monies.
  • The International & Multidisciplinary Interface Committee, co-chaired by the Association’s 2nd Vice-President and an Association member appointed by the Motherboard for a 3-year term, is responsible for recruiting Association members from numerous arts disciplines and increasing participation by international scholars at Association meetings. It advises the Executive Council about international developments in the contemporary arts. The Interface should strive to include at least one representative from the plastic arts including painting, sculpture, or photography; one representative from theater and performance studies; and one representative from film studies, in addition to one or more representatives from the literary arts.

Article X. Advisory Board.

The Advisory Board is an advisory unit separate from the Motherboard and Executive Council. Advisory Board members have no voting privileges in the Association, though Advisory Board members may be Association members with full member privileges. Names of Advisory Board members may be proposed by any Association member for consideration for appointment by the Motherboard. Advisory Board members serve a renewable term of five years.

Article XI. Publications.

The Association shall support and sponsor such publications as shall be approved by the Motherboard.

Journal: The Association shall support, in concert with a scholarly press, a peer-reviewed scholarly journal extending the mission of the Association and exploring new developments in geographically diverse, post-1960s visual, media, literary, and performance arts. The journal editor(s)-in-chief will sit on the A.S.A.P. Motherboard and report on journal activity to the Association; will, as needed, consult with the A.S.A.P. liaison on the journal’s editorial board; will attend A.S.A.P. symposia and conferences to solicit potential articles from presenters; and will serve as ambassadors for the journal at other scholarly conferences.

Article XII. Conduct of Meetings.

Meetings shall be conducted according to Robert’s Rules of Order if held in real time; online meetings shall be organized at the discretion of the organizing committee but should adhere to appropriate standards of professional discourse and meeting conduct. Minutes of Executive Council meetings shall be taken by the Secretary-Communications Coordinator, approved by vote of the Motherboard, and kept as a record of Association activities.

Article XIII. Amendments.

Major amendments to the Constitution and By-laws must be approved first by a vote of two-thirds of the members present at a regular meeting and then by vote of two-thirds of the Executive Council. Minor amendments not changing the name, mission, administrative structure, or voting procedures of the Association may be made by a majority vote of the Executive Council.

Article XIV. Fiscal Matters and Dues.

The fiscal year shall begin on the first day of September and end of the last day of August, except that the first fiscal year shall being on the date of incorporation. The Treasurer shall report on the financial status of A.S.A.P. at the annual meeting of the Association. Only the President and Treasurer are authorized to sign checks in the name of A.S.A.P. Dues shall be as decided by the Executive Council and collected by the Treasurer.

Article XV. Purpose of Organization and Permitted Activities.

The Association is a nonprofit organization created exclusively for educational and research purposes, including, for such purposes, the making of distributions to organizations that qualify as exempt organizations under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, or corresponding section of any future federal tax code.

No part of the net earnings of the Association shall inure to the benefit of, or be distributable to, its members, trustees, officers, or other private persons, except that the organization shall be authorized and empowered to pay reasonable compensation for services rendered and to make payments and distributions in furtherance of the purposes set forth in the Association By-Laws. No part of the activities of the organization shall be the carrying on of political propaganda in the interest of specific political parties, and the organization shall not participate in, or intervene in (including the publishing or distribution of statements) any political campaign on behalf of any candidate for public office. Nothwithstanding any other provision of this document, the organization shall not carry on any other activities not permitted to be carried on by an organization exempt from federal income tax under the Internal Revenue Code’s rules or corresponding section of any future federal tax code.

Article XVI. Dissolution Statement.

Upon dissolution of the Association, assets shall be distributed to one or more tax-exempt non-profit organizations with similar educational and literary goals within the meaning of section 501 (c) (3) of the Internal Revenue Code, or corresponding section of any future federal tax code, or shall be distributed to the federal government, or to a state or local government, for a public purpose. Any such assets not disposed of shall be disposed of by the Court of Common Pleas of the county in which the principal office of the organization is then located, exclusively for such purposes or to such organization or organizations as said Court shall determine, which are organized and operated exclusively for such purposes.

Appendix: A.S.A.P. Governance Structure


Interface Committee Chairs


President (one-year term)

Vice President (one-year term; President elect)

2nd Vice President (one-year term; Vice-President elect)

Past President  (one-year term)

Secretary (appointed four-year term, renewable)

Communications Coordinator (appointed four-year term, renewable)

Treasurer (appointed three-year term, renewable)

Members-at-Large (two-year term)

Interface Committees

Conference Program (Co-chairs: President and conference host)

Elections and Prizes (Chair: Vice-President; appointments overseen by VP)

International & Multidisciplinary (Co-chairs: Past President and Association member appointed by  Motherboard for a 3-year term)

Advisory Board

Members appointed by the Motherboard (five-year term, renewable)