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27 Apr 2017

Summer Academy: De-Colonizing Art Institutions

Window shop, Dhaka, Bangladesh, 2016

Call for applications: Summer Academy: De-Colonizing Art Institutions
Postgraduate Programme in Curating, ZHdK, Further Education


Summer Academy: De-Colonizing Art Institutions 13–24 June 2017 Symposium De-Colonizing Art Institutions 20–21 June 2017

Ronald Kolb

Zurich University of the Arts
Pfingstweidstrasse 96
8005 Zürich

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Call for applications

Summer Academy: De-Colonizing Art Institutions

13–24 June 2017
Zurich University of the Arts
Pfingstweidstrasse 96
8005 Zürich,

Symposium De-Colonizing Art Institutions
20–21 June 2017
Kunstmuseum Basel | Gegenwart, Basel, Switzerland
St. Alban-Graben 16
4051 Basel

Kunstmuseum Basel and Zurich University of the Arts, Institute for Cultural Studies in the Arts, Postgraduate Programme in Curating, Further Education, Webjournal

Application Deadline: 19 May 2017
Fees: 1300 CHF

Organizers: Prof. Dr. Dorothee Richter & Ronald Kolb (MA)

The first week focuses on reading and discussing pivotal theory on decolonial and post-colonial studies and thinking about their impact in art practice and exhibtions. The second week focuses on the inputs of the guest curators and artists and on conceptualizing own projects.

Participants involvement in the symposium
The symposium is part of the summer academy. Participants of the summer academy will research and prepare for the Q&A formats of the symposium.

Participants must apply for acceptance with a short bio and a letter of intent.
Language: English.

Contact: Ronald Kolb (Coordinator),

The globally active art world nowadays cultivates an exchange that transcends the boundaries between cultures and continents through so-called global museums or globally operating art biennials and festivals, at least for a certain audience able to travel around the globe. Yet, this should not blind us to the fact that in the end a certain perspective of the Western history of art and culture claims primacy over global contemporary art and especially its market. Museums and art institutions all over the world therefore tend to have a uniform appearance. In format and content alike, they cater to and follow 'Western' examples.

The question thus arises of how art institutions and museums could work differently by not taking a supposed, globally prevalent 'guiding' culture as their orientation but instead continuing to search for new formats. How can an art institution be conceived? What might a de-colonized institution challenge?

Art institutions, fairs and museums in 'Western' countries are likewise being called upon to reconsider their ways of addressing their public, and not solely because in the face of the diverse migration movements, cultural processes are in a constant state of change, as G. Spivak pointedly observed. Culture as such is something that exists in a constant movement, in the merging different formats, contents, messages and heritages.
Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak: 'What people call transculture is culture as it happens. Culture alive is its own counter-example. Transculturation is not something special and different. It is a moment in a taxonomy of the normality of what is called culture. To assign oneself the special task of cultural translation or plotting cultural translation has therefore to be put within a political context.'
Concept: Dorothee Richter and Ronald Kolb, in cooperation with Sören Grammel

Speakers at the Symposium:

Sabih Ahmed (Asia Art Archive), Jeebesh Bagchi (Raqs Media Collective), Binna Choi (Casco), Eyal Danon (Holon Digital Art Archive), Catherine David (Centre Pompidou), Kadiatou Diallo (SPARCK), Khwezi Gule (Soweto Museums Johannesburg), Rohit Jain (ISEK, Uni Zürich), Shwetal A. Patel (Kochi-Muziris Biennale), Dorothee Richter (Postgraduate Programme in Curating, ZHdK), Peter Weibel, (ZKM, Centre for Art and Media)

Lecturers at the Summer Academy:

Jeebesh Bagchi (Raqs Media Collective), Eyal Danon (Holon Digital Art Archive), Kadiatou Diallo (SPARCK), Grandhotel Cosmopolis Augsburg, Rohit Jain (ISEK, Uni Zürich), Ronald Kolb (Postgraduate Programme in Curating, ZHdK), Khwezi Gule (Soweto Museums Johannesburg), Shwetal A. Patel (Kochi-Muziris Biennale), Post-Museum (Singapore), Dorothee Richter (Postgraduate Programme in Curating, ZHdK)

With a preview from the digital platform on curatorial practice, 'Curating explored with a camera: politics of display, politics of site, politics of knowledge production, politics of transfer and translation' by Richter/Kolb featuring video interviews with Peter Weibel, Kadiatou Diallo, Lars Nittve, Khwezi Kule, Yuko Hasegawa and many others.