Curating Lively Objects explores the role of things as catalysts in imagining futures beyond disciplines for museums and exhibitions. Authors describe how their curatorial collaborations with diverse objects, from rocks to robots, generate new ways of organising and sharing knowledge.
Bringing together leading artists and curators from Australia and Canada, this volume addresses object liveliness from a range of entwined perspectives, including new materialism, decolonial thinking, Indigenous epistemologies, environmentalism, feminist critique and digital aesthetics. Foregrounding practice-based curatorial scholarship, the book focuses on rigorous reflexive accounts of how curating is done. It contributes to global topics in curatorial research, including time and memory beyond and before disciplinarity; the relationship between human and non-human across different ontologies; and the interaction between Indigenous knowledge and disciplinary expertise in interpreting museum collections.
Curating Lively Objects will be of interest to scholars and students in the fields of curatorial studies, museum studies, cultural heritage, art history, Indigenous studies, material culture and anthropology. It also provides a vital resource for professionals working in museums and galleries around the world who are seeking to respond creatively, ethically and inclusively to the challenge of changing disciplinary boundaries.
Table of Contents
List of Figures;
List of Contributors
Part I: Troublesome Objects
Decolonising archives: killing art to write its history
Brook Garru Andrew and Paris Lettau
Rendezvous with the Indigenous Art Collection: how to ‘raise a flag’
Troublemakers in the museum: Robots, romance and the performance of liveliness
Anna Davis and Lizzie Muller
Curating data-driven information-based art: Outlive or let die
Part II: Metabolizing Objects
Digesting institutional critique
Curatorial care and the lively materials of biomedical art
Living and semi-living artefacts on display: The monster that therefore is a living epistemic thing
Oron Catts, Chris Salter and Ionat Zurr
Troubling (natural) history: Bonnie Devine, Mark Dion, and Musée de la Chasse et la Nature
Caroline Seck Langill
Social objects, art, and agriculture
Lucas Ihlein and Caroline Seck Langill
Part III: Energetic Objects
Mineral materialities in contemporary art: Between intra-action, discursive magic and grief
Randy Lee Cutler
Objects, energies and curating resonance across disciplines
Katie Dyer and Lizzie Muller
Feminist new materialism, religion and perception
Digital-physical-emotional immersion in country: Bearing witness to the Appin massacre
Tess Allas and Lizzie Muller
Lizzie Muller is a curator and researcher specialising in audience experience, reflective-curatorial practice and changing disciplinary formations in museums. She is Associate Professor at UNSW, Sydney.
Caroline Seck Langill is a writer and curator who researches intersections between art and science, and the related fields of media art history. She is Professor at OCAD University, Toronto, Ontario.