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Curating Today: Mediating Context

"In your practice, how do you approach the challenges that arise when presenting art from contexts that are not familiar to your audience?" With the dominance of the biennial model and the aggressive globalization of art institutions, such a question is as pertinent to a curator as it ever was. On October 25, 2016, post sat down with a group of twelve curators from diverse institutions across the world to ask how he or she approaches the presentation of unfamiliar work to their local audience.

As you can see in the interviews below, answers varied. Emiliano Valdés, James Muriuki, Jeannette Plaut, and Sebastian Cichocki all speak about art’s universal nature—its inherent ability to communicate across boundaries by speaking to fundamental human experiences. On the other hand, Hui He, Michelle Elligott, Paulina Bravo, and Oliver Kase emphasize how different methods of contextualization can be an effective tool to make work more accessible. Other curators, including Himanshu Kadam, Gridthiya Gaweewong, Diana Campbell Betancourt, and Sarah Meister, refer to the specificity of their local situation and the approach that they have learned to incorporate from that particular vantage point.

These interviews were conducted during the curators' participation in the 2016 MoMA International Curatorial Institute, a two-week training program designed to help curators from diverse parts of the world develop leadership and management skills.

Author

Linnea west headshot

Linnea West

C-MAP Program Coordinator The Museum of Modern Art Linnea coordinates the Contemporary and Modern Art Perspectives (C-MAP) Program, MoMA's global research initiative intended to broaden its presentation of art from... Read more »
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Curating Today: Mediating Context

"In your practice, how do you approach the challenges that arise when presenting art from contexts that are not familiar to your audience?" With the dominance of the biennial model and the aggressive globalization of art institutions, such a question is as pertinent to a curator as it ever was. On October 25, 2016, post sat down with a group of twelve curators from diverse institutions across the world to ask how he or she approaches the presentation of unfamiliar work to their local audience.

As you can see in the interviews below, answers varied. Emiliano Valdés, James Muriuki, Jeannette Plaut, and Sebastian Cichocki all speak about art’s universal nature—its inherent ability to communicate across boundaries by speaking to fundamental human experiences. On the other hand, Hui He, Michelle Elligott, Paulina Bravo, and Oliver Kase emphasize how different methods of contextualization can be an effective tool to make work more accessible. Other curators, including Himanshu Kadam, Gridthiya Gaweewong, Diana Campbell Betancourt, and Sarah Meister, refer to the specificity of their...

Show More

"In your practice, how do you approach the challenges that arise when presenting art from contexts that are not familiar to your audience?" With the dominance of the biennial model and the aggressive globalization of art institutions, such a question is as pertinent to a curator as it ever was. On October 25, 2016, post sat down with a group of twelve curators from diverse institutions across the world to ask how he or she approaches the presentation of unfamiliar work to their local audience.

As you can see in the interviews below, answers varied. Emiliano Valdés, James Muriuki, Jeannette Plaut, and Sebastian Cichocki all speak about art’s universal nature—its inherent ability to communicate across boundaries by speaking to fundamental human experiences. On the other hand, Hui He, Michelle Elligott, Paulina Bravo, and Oliver Kase emphasize how different methods of contextualization can be an effective tool to make work more accessible. Other curators, including Himanshu Kadam, Gridthiya Gaweewong, Diana Campbell Betancourt, and Sarah Meister, refer to the specificity of their local situation and the approach that they have learned to incorporate from that particular vantage point.

These interviews were conducted during the curators' participation in the 2016 MoMA International Curatorial Institute, a two-week training program designed to help curators from diverse parts of the world develop leadership and management skills.

Interview with James Muriuki

Artist and Curator, ARTLabAfrica, Nairobi and 2016 MoMA International Curatorial Institute Participant

Interview with Gridthiya Gaweewong

Artistic Director / Curator, Jim Thompson Art Center, Bangkok and 2016 MoMA International Curatorial Institute Participant

Interview with Emiliano Valdés

Chief Curator, Museo de Arte Moderno, Medellín and 2016 MoMA International Curatorial Institute Participant

Interview with Hui He

Manager of Museum Projects, Poly Culture Group, Beijing and 2016 MoMA International Curatorial Institute Participant

Interview with Jeannette Plaut

Director, CONSTRUCTO, Santiago and 2016 MoMA International Curatorial Institute Participant

Interview with Himanshu Kadam

Curator, Dr. Bhau Daji Lad Museum, Mumbai and 2016 MoMA International Curatorial Participant

Interview with Sarah Meister

Curator, Department of Photography, The Museum of Modern Art, New York and 2016 MoMA International Curatorial Institute Participant

Interview with Paulina Bravo

Deputy Director for Curatorial Affairs, National Museum of Art, Mexico and 2016 MoMA International Curatorial Institute Participant

Interview with Oliver Kase

Head of Modern Art / Chief Curator of Modern Art, Pinakothek der Moderne, Munich and 2016 MoMA International Curatorial Institute Participant

Interview with Michelle Elligott

Chief of Archives, The Museum of Modern Art, New York and 2016 MoMA International Curatorial Institute Participant

Interview with Diana Campbell-Betancourt

Interview with Sebastian Cichocki

Chief Curator and Deputy Programme Director, The Museum of Modern Art, Warsaw and 2016 MoMA International Curatorial Institute Participant
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