BIROn - Birkbeck Institutional Research Online

    Lots of shiny junk at the art dump: the sick and unwilling curator

    Dzuverovic, Lina and Revell, I. (2019) Lots of shiny junk at the art dump: the sick and unwilling curator. Parse Journal 9 , ISSN 2002-0953.

    Full text not available from this repository.


    As the accumulation of the detritus of excessive cultural production saturates the field of culture, its acceleration drives its makers to the point of exhaustion and even illness. The curator finds herself in a curious position should she wish to, or be forced to, slow down and step aside from accelerated production. As an active agent in the cultural field, the curator’s role intrinsically necessitates some form of productivity, be it through facilitating the making of artworks (commissioning), the production of exhibitions, events and catalogues, or simply the production of discourse and its artefacts (books, journals, articles). But what becomes of the curator who, still fully immersed in culture, lacks any desire to add to the field? Is such a curator still considered a curator? Is she like a chef who doesn’t cook, yet wishes to remain a chef? As curators ourselves over the past decades we have to come to feel unwilling to perpetuate the production cycle, limited in capacity by the need to care for others and ourselves, and alienated by the individualistic ‘one-up-manship’ of curatorial authorship and the competitive professional field it fosters. Starting from the notion of the ‘curatorial’ (Rogoff, Martinon), which offers a space to think beyond the immediate products of cultural production, yet tends to not have paid close attention to the social material of life itself, we propose to think through questions of curatorial work at the convergences of intersectional feminisms (Ahmed et al), reproductive labour (Federici), and notions of capacity and debility within recent disability studies (Wendell, Cachia). The text draws on the authors’ joint experience of running the arts agency Electra, using specific examples of Electra’s activity as case studies to explore tensions between productivity and feminist solidarity. In particular this text explores the concrete potential of solidarity, both reactive and proactive, as a way of renewing our engagement with the field: the figure of the curator not as one with the capacity to do the work of curating, but as one with the potential for committed social contract(s). ---------------- The title refers to a video by Chicks on Speed in collaboration with collector Francesca von Habsburg which will be discussed in this paper.


    Item Type: Article
    School: Birkbeck Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences > School of Creative Arts, Culture and Communication
    Depositing User: Lina Dzuverovic
    Date Deposited: 13 Nov 2018 10:06
    Last Modified: 09 Aug 2023 12:45


    Activity Overview
    6 month trend
    6 month trend

    Additional statistics are available via IRStats2.

    Archive Staff Only (login required)

    Edit/View Item Edit/View Item