prep room \\\ Aug 2012 - Jan 2013 \\\ Thinking About Curating Results in Vertigo

NUS Museum has launched its latest prep room | things that may or may not happen in conjunction with Curating Lab 2012. As a contingent space, the prep room is being held together by a series of discussions, seminars, field visits and accumulation of fragments by Kamiliah Bahdar, Wong Lee Min, Tabitha Lee, Ashraf Yoonus and Zaccheus Surendran.*

As has been the case in previous instances of the prep room, it is difficult to suggest clear trajectories or scientificist programs, except describe and emphasise on a particular mode of working informed by the varied interests each participant brings to the room. This will to curate has led to two theoretical concerns becoming central (at least, at this early stage):

[1] When curators deploy objects, both from the contemporary present and the past, they need to find a balance between the kinds of authorial and consumption regimes that the object is said to potentiate. In recent times, however, curators have also deployed newer technologies, frames and approaches, at times incurring the wrath of critics about the decontexualisation or displacement of 'original authenticities'. This curatorial collective, it is intended, will dig - asking: if to even broach 'authenticity' in a world pulled apart by self proliferating technologies is an (im)possible task? 

[2] No matter what kinds of texts are mobilised in the lead up to the Jan 2013 expose, each image and the imaginative eyes that will come to cease it will form a point of ordonnance in the universe of these five emergent curatorial voices. Perhaps, it also appeals to the very basis of the room, as a site that simultaneously accommodates and resists the verbal, visual and emotional. While it might as well be all these things, each participant will be constantly reminded that it is not purely in the elements, but in their coming together at a particular moment, that the magical potency lies.

*To see what they are saying and how their ideas are evolving: click here 
Or just visit us at the NUS Museum prep room (we meet every Thursday evening): click here

For everything else:

Shabbir Hussain Mustafa


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