Day 5: Exhibition Curation

An art object is understood through its context; be it the placement next to other art objects, within a particular geographic region, or in comparison to today’s news reports.  On the 5th meeting of ProtoStudio, we discussed and enacted ideas through curating a miniature gallery exhibit in 2 groups.  I gave the students 11 works of art related to contemporary landscape and asked them to select and organize the pieces that were most relevant to a particular theme.

(Group A)

This group included Greg, Julia, Josh, and Gena.This room pictured above was centered around geographic movement across borders, while the room below was concerned with material transformation.

(Group B)

This group included Ruth, Natalia, Georgia, Liz, and Sarah K.Group B titled their exhibition Re-envision and focused on the unseen aspects of our environment that these artworks engage.The flow from Ana Mendieta’s Silueta photographs (foreground) to Thomas Demand’s Gate (background) was a particularly thoughtful detail.  The rigid poses and questionable violence against the body in Mendieta’s images brings to mind recent debates about body scanners evident in Gate.

The artwork from which the students had to create these exhibitions is listed below:

Jeff Wall, A Sudden Gust of Wind | Luc Tuymans, Pidgeons | Teddy Cruz, Imagining Home Manufactured | Gordon Matta-Clark, Bingo | Simon Starling, ShedBoatShed | Ana Mendieta, Silueta Series | Christo and Jeanne-Claude, Surrounded Islands | Tacita Dean, The Sea, with a Ship; Afterwards an Island | Thomas Demand, Gate | Mark Dion, Mobile Wilderness Unit | Laurie Palmer, Kansas

Prior to beginning, we looked at images of work from Fred Wilson.  He questioned the role of curating artwork and history through his project Mining the Museum.  He would select objects from museum’s collections that would tell an alternate story than what was usually told.Slave shackles and silverware.

Chairs facing a whipping post.

Four museum guard uniforms, on brown mannequins, guarding a replica Picasso with an African mask attached.

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