Saturday, 23 February 2019

Reading list, 23 February 2019

A long write-up in the Sydney Morning Herald of the planned renewal changes to ACMI, including its permanent exhibition and rather discouraging reception areas, with discussion of "the lens", destined to be the new "the pen".


Saturday, 16 February 2019

Reading list, 16 February 2019

Three pieces on words ...

Nicole Martinez's A Lively Debate on the Value of the Term “Latinx”, for Hyperallergic

Aaron Bady's White Words for Popula (on the notion of "Eskimos having more than 50 words for snow")

And a 2018 publication from the Netherland's Research Centre for Material Culture, Words Matter, in which curators and museum staff write about art, word choice and communication in light of the rapid changes around the language used in art work titles and interpretation in the European context (much more interesting than I've made it sound)


Saturday, 9 February 2019

Reading list, 9 February 2019

This week's listening: Kim Hill interviews Gregggggggggorrrrrry Burke, incoming director of the AAG.

From a podcast that's new to me: Expectations and Epiphanies with [UK's National Portrait Gallery] Director Nicholas Cullinan. I'm also starting to mine the Art Agency Partners' (an arts agency that's a subsidiary of Sothebys, explaining their access) backlog of articles, including this one on the squishy (often icky) definitions of outsider / self-taught / outlier art.

It's gonna take me ages to to process this: Dan Hill's The city is my homescreen - "How design practice can work better for people, services and cities together, and not simply individuals".

I found this really thought-provoking: Johanna Jones of the Oakland Museum of California describes an evolution of her organisation's thinking on how to describe its value and mission, in What problem in our community is our museum most uniquely equipped to solve?

Lucie Paterson of ACMI on the development and testing of the physical/digital accompaniment to their exhibition WonderlandThe Lost Map of Wonderland — four months in (from August last year, but still really interesting).

Anne Helen Petersen just keeps banging it out. Here she is on a recent profile of Lorena Bobbitt, with bonus analysis of the 1990s and the cultural moment of postfeminist backlash.

"Either we say that improving health, wellbeing and social outcomes is our proper motivation, or we admit that the value of the arts is different to this." I don't think it's an either/or argument but Carter Gillies picks up here on something I've been thinking about in terms of how we position arts institutions and arts funding.

The German culture ministry has announced US$2.17 million for research into artifacts that entered German public collection in the colonial era. The eight member panel that will allocate the funding includes Bénédicte Savoy, co-author of the report on repatriation commissioned by French preseident Emmanuel Macron in 2018. It's striking to me that the German fund will be administered by the German Lost Art Foundation, established in 2015 to aid with Nazi-looted artworks; it's a reminder that repatriation and restitution look very different in every national/geographic/historical context.

Endearing. Gig posters for science talks - by a cellular biologist.


Saturday, 2 February 2019

Reading list, 2 February 2019

Hartwig Fischer deployed a spectacularly misjudged bit of phrasing this week discussing demands for the return of the Parthenon marbles, saying that "When you move a cultural heritage to a museum, you move it outside. However, this shifting is also a creative act." I say "spectacularly misjudged" because I am myself very guilty of opening my mouth and saying stupid things, or saying things stupidly. However, the British Museum backed this up through a statement, saying in the piece of Guardian reporting linked above that "Hartwig Fischer was stating the longstanding position of the British Museum".

Jonathan Jones reliably leapt on to the resultant controversy: as always, I hope he is not responsible for his headlines - Let's not lose our marbles over the British Museum boss's remarks.

And speaking of reliable, an otherwise on-point piece of BBC reporting on the Pitt Rivers Museum's repatriation efforts brings conservative warhorse Tiffany Jenkins in to trot out her opinions once more about the role of museums as world knowledge centres, cultural contexts be damned.

Moving on. The reliably interesting Gray Market newsletter for this week - Why the Government Shutdown's End Should Be Cold Comfort to US Arts Institutions.

Saved up for weekend reading: Doing the Work: [art journos] Carolina A. Miranda and Siddhartha Mitter in Conversation.

And Kajsa Hartsig on thinking of exhibitions as one of many possible endpoints.