Conférence : « Contemporary Curating & Museum Education » (Zürich, Museum für Gestaltung)

imageMuseum für Gestaltung Zürich, Vortragssaal [lecture hall] 

Ausstellungsstrasse 60, 8005 Zurich, Switzerland, November 21 - 22, 

International Conference: 
“Contemporary Curating & Museum Education”

Ever since museum work first began to be professionalised,
“curation” and “education” have been presented as distinct
areas of work, based on quite different sets of knowledge and experience. I
n the course of the last two decades, this structure has grown less rigid, and the 
boundaries between the two areas of work have become increasingly 
permeable. Conceived by the programme leader and three lecturers from 
“Curating and Museum Education”, the specialised Master in Art 
Education programme at Zurich University of the Arts, the conference 
poses a central question which is also crucial to the teaching on this 
course: How does the integration of curating and education change the 
nature of museum work? International representatives from a variety of 
different types of museum take a close look at the various ways in 
which they are putting these “grand designs” into practice.

Conference languages: German and English with simultaneous translation

Concept: Angeli Sachs, Carmen Mörsch, Thomas Sieber, Nora Landkammer
Research assistance and organisation: Hannah Horst
Master of Arts in Art Education, Curating & Museum Education


Friday, 21 Nov 2014

3 pm
Welcoming by Prof. Christoph Weckerle, Head of Department of Cultural 
Analysis, ZHdK 
Welcoming by Prof. Angeli Sachs, Head of Master of Arts in Art 
Education and Specialization in Curating & Museum Education, ZHdK / 
Curator Museum für Gestaltung Zürich
Prof. Carmen Mörsch, Head of Institute for Art Education / Lecturer in 
Master of Arts in Art Education, ZHdK 
Prof. Thomas Sieber, Lecturer in Master of Arts in Art Education, 
Curating & Museum Education and Bachelor of Arts in Art Education, ZHdK

3:30 pm – 5 pm
1. Educational Turn in Curating
Since around 2006 increased interest has been seen in pedagogical 
questions in exhibiting (especially in - but also beyond - contemporary 
art). How can this so-called educational turn be made productive for 
interlocking exhibiting and conveying under the banner of 
transformative practice?

Introduction and chairing: Carmen Mörsch
Prof. Dr. Nora Sternfeld, Head of Curating and Mediating Art, Aalto 
University Helsinki, Finnland / Co-head of ecm Master Programme for 
Exhibition Theory and Practice, University of Applied Arts Vienna, 
Alejandro Cevallos, Leiter Mediación Comunitaria, Fundación Museos de 
la Ciudad, Quito/Ecuador
(consecutive interpretation from Spanish)

5 pm Break

5.15 pm – 7 pm
2. Ethnological Museums
What social role and what educational function can be adopted by 
ethnological museums and ones that have developed from that type of 
collection? The panel will discuss forms of critical examination of the 
colonialism of ethnographical collections in Europe and South America. 
It will query the relationship of curatorial and conveying practice, in 
particular in recent approaches to collaborative museology.

Introduction and chairing: Nora Landkammer, Research Assistant, 
Institute for Art Education / Lecturer in Master of Arts in Art 
Education, Curating & Museum Education, ZHdK
Juana Paillalef, director, Museo Mapuche de Cañete Ruka kimvn taiñ 
volil Juan Cayupi, Huechicura, Cañete, Chile (consecutive 
interpretation from Spanish)
Dr. Adriana Muñoz, Curator, National Museums of World Culture, 
Gothenburg, Sweden
Dr. Bernadette Lynch, museum writer, researcher and consultant, 
London/Manchester, United Kingdom

Saturday, 22  Nov  2014

9:00 am – 10:30 am
3. Architecture Museums
How can the constructed environment be exhibited in architecture 
museums and be made accessible not only to expert audiences but also to 
the wider public? And what issues are then dealt with? The panel will 
present institutions and projects, which, in addition to the 
traditional spectrum of exhibiting issues, will also address current 
social issues when it is not developing ideas for architectural culture 
and the town of the future. In the process, they will be experimenting 
with new ways to convey concepts and involving their audiences as 
partners in dialogue.

Introduction and chairing: Angeli Sachs
Linda Vlassenrood, Programme Director, International New Town 
Institute, Almere, Netherlands: Netherlands Architecture Institute
Prof. Dr. Andres Lepik, History of Architecture and Curatorial Practice 
/ Director of the Museum of Architecture, Technical University of 
Munich, Germany
Maria Nicanor Curator, Contemporary Architecture, Design and Digital 
Section, Victoria & Albert Museum, London, United Kingdom / Former 
Associate Curator, Architecture and Urbanism, Guggenheim Museum, New 
York, USA and Curator, BMW Guggenheim LAB

10:30 am Break

10:45 am – 12:15 pm
4. Design Museums
In design museums, in addition to “historical phenomena, contemporary 
tendencies and innovative approaches that allow a look into the 
future”, at least in the Modern Age and Contemporary Age Departments, 
visitors encounter the musealised objects of their daily routines. In a 
manner similar to architecture museums, that confronts museums of this 
type with special challenges in dialogue between them-the-institutions 
and their audiences. Consequently, many such institutions are in a 
process of transformation. What is shown in what context, and what role 
does educational turn play with respect to conveying design and the 
culture of daily routines?

Introduction and chairing: Thomas Sieber
Barbara Coutinho, Director of the MUDE – Museu do Design e da Moda, 
Colecção Francisco Capelo / Professor of Architecture, Instituto 
Superior Técnico (University of Lisbon), Lisbon, Portugal
Franziska Mühlbacher, Curator Education, Museum für Gestaltung Zürich & 
Angeli Sachs, Curator, Museum für Gestaltung Zürich, Switzerland
Dr. Helen Charman, Head of Learning, Design Museum, London, United 

12:15 pm Noon break

1:30 pm
5. History Museums
Historical museums are important places in terms of representation and 
powerful actors in the construction of cultures, identities and 
communities. In recent times, town museums in particular have been 
increasingly reinventing themselves as venues of links between the past 
and present and as spheres of political action, in which conflicts can 
be made visible and dealt with. Knowing about asymmetries of resources 
and social power, how do history museums configure their working 
relationships with interest groups? How can the knowledge and 
strategies of action for conveying contribute to museums entering 
relationships with those they (want to) represent that are binding and 
as far as possible unbiased with regard to the result?

Introduction and chairing: Thomas Sieber
Bonita Bennett, Director, District Six Museum, Cape Town, South Africa
Dr. Paul Spies, Director, Amsterdam Museum, Netherlands
Sonja Thiel, Curator of Stadtlabor unterwegs, historisches museum 
frankfurt, Germany

3 pm
6. Cultural Museums
In a largely secularised society, museums take over the function that 
religious institutions used to have as places of identity creation and 
identity reassurance. At the same time, in times characterised by 
pluralism and hybridity, it is important to be familiar with the 
culture(s) of the “others” and the different aspects of one’s own 
culture. As a consequence of examining the shoah, numerous Jewish 
museums have been founded since the end of the 1980s to make the 
largely destroyed Jewish culture visible again. Following the 
development of a society increasingly shaped by migration, it is 
overdue for museums to enter a more active discussion of the 
perspectives of Islam. And what role does the Christian culture play?

Introduction and chairing: Angeli Sachs
Dr. Hanno Loewy, Director, Jewish Museum of Hohenems, Austria
Dr. Susan 
Kamel, Project Manager, Goethe Institute Gulf Region, Abu Dhabi, United 
Arabic Emirates
Dr. Stefan Kraus, Director, Kolumba Diocese Museum, 
Cologne, Germany

4:30 pm Break

5:00 pm
7. Contemporary Art Museums
The so-called educational turn in curating was first seen in 
contemporary art. 
The panel will by way of example reflect upon three 
approaches that are meant to open up the boundary between “exhibiting” 
and “conveying” art for the purpose of “integrated programming”. The 
intention is to position the art institution as an active co-creator of 
social conditions and of educational happenings. What relationships of 
tension and contradictions come with such endeavours?

Introduction and chairing: Carmen Mörsch
Syrus Marcus Ware, Program Coordinator of the AGO Youth Program, Art 
Gallery of Ontario, Toronto, Canada
Julia Schäfer, Curator, Galerie für Zeitgenössische Kunst Leipzig, 
Janna Graham,  Projects Curator at  Serpentine  Gallery Location 
London, London, United Kingdom

6:30 pm Closing discussion

7:00 pm Drinks reception

Registration for the conference:;
Conference fee: CHF 25.00
Free for university students, interns and volunteer trainees

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