Thursday 6 September 2012

Journal | week 3 the role of a curator

We discussed the notion of the idealistic and perhaps almost unattainable role of a curator as in a liminal space, uninflected by the cultures of either polar ends. (I think.) 

It was and is still difficult for me to grasp this concept. Being brought up in the local education system we were told never to sit on the fence in the case of writing arguments. I initially saw three shades to this question. White, black and you also have grey. The whole concept being in the liminal space would mean wading within the thin grey line. However, we then also came to the conjecture that by labeling the liminal space the "grey" zone would be putting a label to it and henceforth some what casting an influence to it, which should not be the case. I am still trying to get this. >.<

With the concept of liminality, our discussions progressed to include the roles and challenges of being a curator.

According to Thomas McEvilley, an artist often creates his work with a certain intention, but the additional aiming that the curator inserts when exhibiting the work also often invalidates the root intention. And the curator also puts the works into a particular context while presenting it to the viewer. He highlights this move away from sameness and solidarity in the team(for a curator to achieve sameness between original work intention and curating forms) has gained popularity. Instead, many curators are choosing to highlight the differences of styles and allowing each thing to be itself. Recall: Curatorial Roundtable 2: Challenge of stringing a narrative between works WITHOUT forming too thick a narrative of your own. 

Is also important for the curator to be aware of the cultures he or she is getting entangled with. This is to prevent the curator from appearing unaware of the cultures and social norms. Certain curators chose only art devoid of of outside input, or in other other words, native original works without the influences of the west. This choice was deemed highly myopic, especially in the case of India, whereby this choice led to the omission of a great number of complex works by artists struggling to comprehend the interface between India and the West. The fertility of the multicultural plurality of the Indian culture seemed to be ignored in the thought process.

I guess these are important for us to know in the planning of our exhibition. So that we have a focus, and yet, not ignore the pluralities of the field we are in.

Our discussions for the exhibition have also have progressed. We are currently narrowed our topics to the few on the wall. The topics are still in their organic forms. We have decided to do our own individual research on all the presented topics so that we can come together to further discuss the state of how to move further.

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