Curatorial development in Scotland

On a Par? A colloquy on enquiry, working together, and curating

30.09.2016 - The Pearce Institute

Presentations & discussions by: Jason E. Bowman, Ben Cranfield, Julie Crawshaw, Benjamin Fallon, James N. Hutchinson, Kirsten Lloyd, Kirsteen Macdonald, Megs Morley, Andrea Phillips, Mick Wilson and Lesley Young

Critical expansions in curating and its developing literature run concurrent to our ‘always-on’ conditions within the capitalised spectacle of contemporary art production, its institutions and circuits.

With the capacity to evolve through a rotating series of turns (social, educational, research, para-curatorial, locational), the ‘gift of the curatorial’ (J.P.Martinon) is seen to extend curating towards immediate politics, developing socialites and instituting world-making futures. Punctuated by communal, collaborative and collectivised working methods, artistic and curatorial practices have the potential to repurpose nuanced ‘meetings’ that foster new relations; revise existing registers and orders; conspire towards new organisational practices and institutional constructions and thus effect modalities such as exhibition-making as research or the redrafting our own constituencies. Concurrently, in the ever-decreasing division between labour and life, curating becomes entangled with the everyday busyness of contemporary art; often thwarting the possibility of rehearsing other conceptions such as adapting institutions or the potential to recuperate radical projects. We need to interrogate how art and life is affected when working together, who ‘togetherness’ excludes, what can be un/done, and for whom?

This colloquy assembles researchers and practitioners who share an engagement with the developing discourse and praxis of curating. Together we will consider:

  • What can be un/done through collaborative non/work?
  • What exhibitionary registers influence how we discuss artistic life/work?
  • What are the implications of constituting exhibitions as research?
  • How does the curatorial act upon structures of organisation?
  • For whom do we curate?
  • How can we administrate working together?

Video documentation of presentations by Andrea Phillips, Megs Morley, Jason E Bowman and Julie Crawshaw on vimeo HERE.

This colloquy was co-organised and generously supported by Valand Academy at the University of Gothenburg through the research project Stretched: Expanding Notions of Artistic Practice through Artist-led Cultures – a three-year long (2015-2018), Fine Art practice-based research project funded by the Swedish Research Council.