Master Thesis paper and 3rd semester paper
Master thesis paper:
In this place and time - listening to the voices of the periphery
NOTE: The paper is tied to my curatorial project, the podcast series “Kunsten på kanten”. The podcast is in Danish, but you can find an English summary of each of the four episodes in the documentation of the curatorial project, in the appendix, at the end of the document, from page 73.
This paper is taking its point of departure from on my own curatorial project titled; “Kunsten p Kanten “(Art on the edge). Kunsten p Kanten is a podcast series in 4 episodes, which got publicly distributed in April 2020 on the art-website IDOART.dk. The podcast is examining 4 different art platforms, all situated in the North-West region of Jutland. Through interviews with the individual curators and organizers of each platform, a discussion about center vs. periphery, inclusion and participation and support funding systems, are being raised and debated from different perspectives. The knowledge acquired through this podcast has formed the basis for this paper’s further inquiry into the topic of contemporary art projects in the Danish Periphery. Since 2015 there has been a political awareness of the geographical distribution of the Danish Art Foundation’s financial resources, which has resulted in earmarked funding pools and the establishment of two regional Art Foundations to support art projects directly connected to the provincial areas. This has resulted in a rise of contemporary art projects in the periphery, both from private initiatives as well as from larger public institutions. In this paper I will be examining how the situated context of the periphery is influencing curatorial and artistic endeavors. Initially, I will be introducing the background of this specific paper’s focus, describing my own personal interest in the topic as well as situating it in the current socio-cultural and political landscape. Succeeding this I will outline my curatorial project; the choice of format and method and how it relates to curatorial practice and research, as well as the conventional format of an exhibition. Following this I will present a thorough analysis of each podcast episode, based on a sub-question formulated in accordance to main issues concerning the individual art-platform. Ultimately, I will discuss all four platforms in relation to each other, reflect on their objectives and how they relate to the current political landscape and culture policy. My aim with both the curatorial project of the podcast and this paper, is to raise awareness of art in the periphery as counterpart to the urban artscene, as well as producing an academic inquiry, to add perspective to a broader debate on curatorial endeavors’ infiltration with social, economic and political agendas, even beyond the periphery.
3rd semester paper:
Caretaker or Creative producer, who cares?
A Paper on how the curatorial position has been developed and professionalized, yet still is a disputed title in how its function should be practiced. The Paper examines the curatorial position, investigating what it means to be a curator. Which functions and what autonomy comes with the title of the curator, and how are they being practised in the process of exhibition-making? Is the title indicating a creative producer function or rather a function of being the caretaker/supporter in the collaboration with artists and their work?
By looking at the history of the artist/curator (Marcel Duchamp) and the development of the independent curator (Harald Szeemann), I want to highlight the shift that the curatorial role and function has gone through over the past decades. By looking at the dispositions of the curatorial turn and the criticism that has been pointed towards it (Paul O’Neil and Anton Vindokle), as well as theories on curatorial ethics / caretaking (Kate fowler, Helena Reckitt) I want to reflect on the curatorial function and its methods in practice and analyze the arguments for and against its autonomous positioning. Conclusively I will present a short autoethnographic case-study of the event Curatorial Forum #1, which I personally participated in on December 10th 2019, to demonstrate how these debates still are relevant to the current contemporary context among curators.