The Curatorial in Parallax(What Museums Do 1)

AUTHOR : National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art
ISBN : 9788963031972
PUBLISHER : 국립현대미술관
PUBLICATION DATE : April 30 ,2019,
SPINE SIZE : 0.9 inches
PAGES : 279
SIZE : 5.10 * 9.1 inches
WEIGHT : 1.3 pounds
PRICE : $32.45
This book What Museums Do-The Curatorial in Parallax is based on the content of the international symposium organized by the MMCA with the title What Do Museums Research? from April 7 to 8, 2018. The symposium was the first initiative of the MMCA Research Project, which is an endeavor to examine the various practices of the contemporary museum and chart the course of its future. Composed of four sections, What Museums Do-The Curatorial in Parallax maps out the multiple efforts to reform and transform research vis à vis the museum.

National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art

MMCA produces specialized contents focusing on Korean art and makes them accessible to the general public. MMCA publishes exhibition catalogs, academic periodicals including Journal of the National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Korea, Conservation of Art, and research publications, for the purpose of sharing in-depth research studies with worldwide researchers.

The publication that you have in your hands answers a very simple yet, for some, not so evident question: Why do museums engage in research activities? Why do they expend part of their budget on intangible, immaterial, and apparently useless actions in which curators and researchers, members of the staff, and freelancers, members of the staff, and resources? Why do museums need to hire specialists in fields that seem to be remote from the concerns of a large number of citizens? In actuality, the role of museums as institutions dedicated to public culture and enhancing knowledge mandates us to strive beyond the mere tasks of conserving and exhibiting artifacts that represent the material culture of a particular society. Whether through explicit transmission of knowledge or providing an intense experience of and with artworks, museums should never abandon their priority mission of making societies advance and improve. For this reason, the National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Korea, and all museums must continuously research and innovate in our practices and the discourses about our objectives, as well as the implications and meaning of the messages we elaborate and transmit.

Globalization produced the conviction that we are all citizens of the same world (or the same planet). This presented an incredible opportunity for the MMCA to define the institution’s identity with the creation of an original, precise, hopefully elegant discourse about art that could be perceived and enjoyed globally, especially after being perceived and enjoyed locally. And that discourse could not only be about Korean art: It would have to be centered around the contribution Korean artists have made, since the late nineteenth century, to the global narrative of modernity, a nonlinear narrative that does not comply with Western canons. In museums, the intellectual capacity to generate poetry, revelation, and beauty is the expression of the potential of research.

While the Korean public museum landscape is strong in terms of “hardware” (number of institution, square meters of curators, etc.), it has a significant opportunity for growth in terms of “software” (intellectual production, critical debates, audience development, and so forth). In order conversation, we have as great a need for software as hardware. Singularity is possible when the subjects who speak and produce are well aware of their surroundings, of what other colleagues are thinking and doing. Networks and collaborative ties are essential. To this end, we decided to make the museum think, express, argue, discuss, explain, narrate, talk (and listen), act, interact, exchange, and trade-from us, with others. We call all of this “research.”

What Museums Do 1: The Curatorial in Parallax is the first chapter in our conviction that thinking is a collective activity, that existence is relation, and that identity is permanent exchange and evolution. I would like to express our sincere gratitude to all the participants who have made this start to our initiative a true success. All of our audiences-analog and digital, viewers of live and broadcasted event, and mow readers-have been and will be indispensable partners with the MMCA in this exciting endeavor.
Bartomeu Mari Foreword 9
Song Sujong & Kim Seng Eun Introduction 13

Research Practice Revisited

James Elkins What is Research in a Museum? 23
Irit Rogoff Becoming Research 39

Museum Research - Program, Project, Platform

Beck Jee-sook What Museums Don’t Research: A Survey through one opening 57
Paola Antonelli Museums (and Design) as the R&D of Society 77
Margriet Schavemaker Changing the Game: Museum Research and the Politics of Inclusivity 89
Victoria Walsh Situated Research: Curating, Technology, and the Future 107

The Curatorial and Knowledge Production

Beatrice von Bismarck Constellations and Transpositions: On the Political Potential of Curatorial Practice 129
Paul O'Neill Exhibitions as Curatorial Readymade Forms of Escape 143
Simon Sheikh Thinking with Exhibitions, Thinking with People 159
Kim Seong Eun A Critical Muscle, a Choreographic Terrain 173
James Voorhies I Call This Work Research 193

The Imaginary of Institutions

Annette Jael lehmann Mind the Gap: Insights into Practice-Based Research on Performance Art and media between Universities and Museums 213
Dorothee Richter From (Un) learning Curating to Teaching to Transgress 231
Lim Shan Art as Strategy for Social Transformation and Community Pedagogy: Lessons from Institutional Critique and Critical Pedagogy 243
Pascal Gielen Between Creativity and Criminality: On the Liminal Zones of Art and Political Action 259