Making and Unmaking Exhibitions

Making and Unmaking Exhibitions

Centre culturel suisse, Paris

Dhaka Art Summit (DAS 2020). © Randhir Singh.

March 30, 2021
Making and Unmaking Exhibitions
Sustainability in Times of Planetary Crisis
April 2–27, 2021

“Pandemics do not materialize in isolation,” historian of science Edna Bonhomme has rightly pointed out. “They are part and parcel of capitalism and colonization.” A crisis brings to light the hidden cracks in a system as well as the invisible (infra)structures that support it. The things that don’t work suddenly become glaringly obvious. This is particularly true of the cultural sector, one of the many economic sectors decimated by the COVID-19 crisis. Museums and cultural spaces around the world were among the first to be forced to close their doors. With tourism halted nearly everywhere on the planet, the communities involved were hit hard, both socially and economically; artists and cultural professionals were plunged into a state of extreme economic and social disarray. Moreover, confined populations, unable to share and celebrate their heritage—especially their intangible cultural heritage—have suffered the loss of fundamental and structuring cultural elements in their everyday social and individual lives. While some museums have reopened, with significant restrictions, others are still facing the consequences of the crisis behind closed doors. 

Despite the challenges posed by this unprecedented crisis, many cultural institutions have continued to serve as a source of resilience and support to their communities, imagining and devising new ways to provide broad access to culture, education, and more. Against this backdrop, the Centre culturel suisse and the feminist platform for design politics Futuress proposes a series of lectures and accompanying essays on how the cultural sector, and in particular, exhibitions, are critically self-examining their social and political ramifications, and proposing new pathways for more just futures for all. With an eye to how sustainability translates into concerted action on climate, spatial, and social justice, the program invites curators, museum directors, artists, designers, and community organizers to share various approaches and perspectives.

Free online lectures April 2–27, 2021, followed by essays published on
Coproduction by Centre culturel suisse and
To get a reminder before each lecture please click here.

April 2, 2021 (12:30-1:30pm CET)
“Srijan-Abartan—a workshop for exhibition making at the heart of the Dhaka Art Summit 2020”
Roundtable with Diana Campbell Betancourt, Prem Krishnamurthy, Dries Rodet, Inteza Shariar, moderated by Nina Paim
live on Centre culturel suisse Twitch channel; no registration needed

April 6, 2021 (8pm CET)
“More of what we don’t see”

Lecture by Keyna Eleison, Co-Artistic Director of the Museum of Modern Art in Rio de Janeiro
live on Centre culturel suisse Twitch channel; no registration needed

April 20, 2021 (8pm CET)
“Trees in Forests, Webs, Onions”

Lecture by Lucia Pietroiusti, Curator of General Ecology at the Serpentine Galleries, London
live on Centre culturel suisse Twitch channel; no registration needed

April 27, 2021 (8pm CET)
“Wet Paint”

Lecture by Ramaya Tegegne, artist and cultural organizer based in Geneva
live on Centre culturel suisse Twitch channel; no registration needed

April 27, 2021 (9pm CET)
“Exhibiting for Earthly Habitability: Curating more-than-human and other-human climate ecologies”

Lecture by Fiona Cameron, Senior Research Fellow at the Institute for Culture and Society, Western Sydney University
live on Centre culturel suisse Twitch channel; no registration needed

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Centre culturel suisse, Paris
March 30, 2021

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