Is Curator an Artist, is Contemporary Art Exhibition an Art-work?

Exhibition as the Artistic Medium, Curator of Contemporary Art as the Artist. The Changing Statuses of the Exhibition and the Curator in the Field of Contemporary Art

Friday 1st and Saturday 2nd October 2010

Alfred H. Barr Jr., Martin Beck, Beatrice von Bismarck, Michael Fehr, Bogdan Ghiu, Søren Grammel, Paul O’Neill, Kerstin Stakemeier, Mary Anne Staniszewski, Philip Ursprung, Jelena Vesić, Beti Žerovc

We are yet to find the answer as to whether and how is an exhibition a form of art and the curator an artist, however, the debates surrounding these issues, and especially criticisms and reproaches have become a permanent fixture in the contemporary art discourse. As it seems that persisting in the elementary debate and the rejection of such development on the basic level merely hinder the actual research and understanding as to how do the medium of the exhibition and its author function and what influence do they have, the symposium will try to actively confront these issues. Twelve lecturers will attempt to shed some light on these two phenomena, most of them will perform this by treating and analysing actual contemporary or historical examples.

The central issues:

  • Can we define if and why the exhibition is or isn’t a work of art? If the exhibition itself is becoming a work of art, what are the main features of such a work of art? Can we define its structure?
  • What makes the curator an author, or what makes him an artist?
  • Do we still view and enjoy individual artworks within exhibitions or do we increasingly view, appreciate and contemplate exhibitions themselves? Can or must we view and enjoy these two things separately or simultaneously? Or should they merge as in a theatre play or film, or maybe they already did?

© 2008-2010 Igor Zabel Association for Culture and Theory

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