LOSE YOURSELF! symposium on labyrinthine exhibitions as curatorial model

LOSE YOURSELF! symposium on labyrinthine exhibitions as curatorial model

Stedelijk Studies

Tinguely, Niki de Saint Phalle, and Per Olof Utveldt. Construction of HON – en kathedral, Moderna Museet, Stockholm, 1966.
October 10, 2016
LOSE YOURSELF! symposium on labyrinthine exhibitions as curatorial model

February 2–4, 2017

Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam
Museumplein 10
1071 DJ Amsterdam

Colloquium: February 2

Vrije Universiteit
De Boelelaan 1105,
1081 HV Amsterdam,


Organizers: Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam; Moderna Museet, Stockholm; Tinguely Museum, Basel; Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam

Both Dylaby (1962) in the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam and HON – en katedral (1966) in Stockholm’s Moderna Museet are remarkable exhibitions in the history of curating. Walking into a large vagina, shooting paint, gazing at the stars in a planetarium, dancing the twist, plowing a path through a room filled with balloons: the exhibitions might easily be considered more as theme park attractions than serious art shows, comprising theatrical props instead of works of art. At first glance, these two exhibition “aberrations,” resulting from the close collaboration of museum directors Willem Sandberg (Dylaby) and Pontus Hultén (HON), as well as artists Martial Raysse, Robert Rauschenberg, Niki de Saint Phalle, Daniel Spoerri, Jean Tinguely, and Per-Olof Ultvedt, seem to defy serious analysis, let alone contribute to the critical discourse of contemporary exhibition history.

However, these large-scale, collaborative and comprehensive exhibition installations have attracted both the expanding academic field of exhibition history and current curatorial practices. But how are we to understand the body of knowledge produced by a generation of historically conscious, self-reflexive curators and art historians alike? What (critical) models do exhibitions such as Dylaby and HON provide for contemporary curatorial, artistic, and scholarly practices?

During the symposium, a selection of key experts in the field will address these questions and frame them in the wider context of the naissance of the modern and contemporary art museum and the role models of Pontus Hultén and Willem Sandberg, our continuous engagement with the art production of the 1960s, the place of these exhibitions in the wider artistic oeuvres of the participating artists, post-1960s “labyrinthine” exhibition practices at large, and the growing discipline of exhibition history.

Among the confirmed keynote speakers are: Pamela M. Lee (Stanford University), Reesa Greenberg (Independent Research Professional), Mark Wigley (Columbia University), Patrik Andersson (Emily Carr University of Art + Design), Noit Banai (University of Vienna), Ina Blom (University of Oslo), Eric de Bruyn (Leiden University) and museum directors Daniel Birnbaum (Moderna Museet), Beatrix Ruf (Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam) and Roland Wetzel (Tinguely Museum).

Preceding the symposium, a young researchers colloquium at the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam will explore the broader context of artistic and curatorial approaches to Setting the Conditions of Display in 20th and 21st century art.

The symposium is organized in the context of the large-scale retrospective Jean Tinguely – Machine Spectacle at the Stedelijk Museum (October 1, 2016 through March 5, 2017). The project is also part of a research project conducted by the Moderna Museet that focuses on Pontus Hultén’s archive. The project will produce a series of publications highlighting pivotal exhibitions in the history of the Moderna Museet, which will be launched in conjunction with the symposium.

The organizers aim to present a selection of the contributions to the symposium in a publication that will appear in Stedelijk Studies in 2017.

More information about the content of the symposium and admission can be found here.

For immediate enquiries please contact Dorine de Bruijne ([email protected]).


LOSE YOURSELF! symposium at Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam

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October 10, 2016

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