What does the work want? On the intersection of curatorial and conservation cultures

November 25, 2021

by — Posted in Allgemein

A series of workshops titled Curating Living Archives organized by Dr Judit Bodor (Baxter Fellow Curatorial Practice) and Adam Lockhart (Lecturer in Media Arts, media archivist) at Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art & Design at University of Dundee, explores challenges and approaches toward how we can care for the ‘unruly’ archives of contemporary art in academic (rather than in the museum) environment. Within this series, I co-convened with Judit Bodor, the workshop Curation as Expanded Conservation and delivered a talk titled “What does the work want? On the intersection of curatorial and conservation cultures.”

How do curation and conservation intersect when it comes to the presentation of post-1960s time-based artworks emerging from processes of what Lucy Lippard described as ‘the dematerialisation of the art object’? While in the case of works based on performance and installation each act of exhibiting – that is display or activation of an artwork – may already involve some aspects of preservation, not all preservation aims at displaying artworks. In this workshop, co-convened by Dr Judit Bodor and Dr Hanna B. Hölling, and with contribution from artist/curator Prof André Stitt and Benjamin Sebastian and Joseph Morgan Schofield from ]performance s p a c e[, we will examine how the intersection of curation and conservation might productively contribute to the way we engage with and conceptualize ephemeral practices. We will explore how curatorial acts and gestures are always reliant on factors such as the situatedness of curatorial knowledge and the limitations and/or excesses of the archive, and how they problematize and alter, if not derail, our understanding of the ongoing lives of artworks. What does it mean to curate and/or conserve an artwork? Can an artwork be conceived apart or always already in relation to curatorial and conservation practices – as an entanglement of many different hands and minds? Expect lively presentations by workshop leaders followed by group interactions.

The talks will be made available publically soon.