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Issue 15

Performing the Exhibition

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Performing the Exhibition:
On exhibition practices between performance and installation.

This issue of the journal brings together contributions from an international group of art practitioners, curators and theorists exploring the relationship between performance and installation in the context of the contemporary art exhibition. Key amongst the concerns of the journal is the possibility for rethinking the static model of exhibition and exploring the way in which performative approaches, adopted by artists and curators alike, can reframe the exhibition as an environment undergoing formal or relational transformation.

With reference to history, theory and examples of contemporary projects, these texts reflect upon the way that diverse artistic and curatorial practices can be seen addressing several linked questions: If allowed to transform and evolve its surroundings, how might performance re-program the exhibition format? To what extent do experiments between performance and installation describe a new role for exhibition publics? With a renewed focus on the participatory and process-based possibilities of the exhibition, to what extent has curating itself become a performative activity?

This issue of the Journal relates to a three-day symposium produced by the ECAV — Ecole Cantonale d'Art du Valais, Sierre and staged at the Château Mercier, Sierre, Switzerland between the 8th and the 10th of April 2011.
The background for the symposium was the touring exhibition project In the Belly of the Whale, curated by Sibylle Omlin.

With contributions by:

Katya Garcia Anton, Barnaby Drabble, Sally De Kunst, Federica Martini, Sibylle Omlin, Dorothee Richter and Gavin Wade.

Edited by

Barnaby Drabble, Federica Martini and Sibylle Omlin

Produced and supported by
The Postgraduate Programme in Curating, Institute for Cultural Studies, Department of Cultural Analysis, Zurich University of the Arts and the Department of Research, Ecole Cantonale d'Art du Valais, Sierre.