Decolonising the Museum
Activity

Decolonising the Museum

Curated by Beatriz Preciado
in progress
Film Still, Wildness (2012) Directed by Wu Tsang

During the sessions, video streaming will be available here.

In this seminar, critics, artists, curators and activists are invited to explore the languages and practices of decolonisation that question the imperial and Eurocentric narratives and representations upon which the museums of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries were founded. If, as Foucault pointed out, ‘the return of the subjugated knowledges’ has begun, then we should ask ourselves what are the epistemologies that these ‘local, discontinuous, disqualified and illegitimate’ knowledges articulate, what artistic practices do they support and what alternative institutions do they mobilise. In an academic and museistic context lacking in critical references to decolonial theories and practices, this encounter wishes to provide a cartography of counter-stories and critical instruments, and create a forum for debate and action capable of generating networks of production and research, and collectively imagine the transformation of contemporary museums.

If the museum was invented as a colonial technology capable of unifying the historical narrative, and as a collective memory prosthesis trying to re-write the past and prefigure the future in order to legitimise its hegemony, is it then possible to conceive a decolonial use of the museum? Is it possible to produce a knowledge capable of explaining the historical assemblages of subjects subalternised by colonisation? What happens when the tradition of enlightened modernity has to confront the critique of Frantz Fanon, Angela Davis, Aimé Césaire and Édouard Glissant? How should we understand the current process of art ‘globalisation’ and its impact on the relations between historical legitimisation, capitalism and Western critique? What are the differences between the de-Westernised museum and the decolonial museum?

On the one hand, the seminar explores the mutations of capitalism according to what Peter Linebaugh and Marcus Rediker call ‘the multiethnic class’, the invisible ‘Atlantic proletariat’, the processes of racial, gender and sexual oppression that were central not only to the ‘primitive accumulation’ behind the Industrial Revolution, but to the invisible accumulation that today favours the expansion of global capitalism. On the other hand, we propose a critical re-reading of the authors and discourses responsible for the fiction of ‘European modernity’ and the ‘museum of modernity’, confronting the aesthetics and politics of emancipation with the overturning of artistic, cultural and global protest knowledges and practices: ethnopsychiatric, pan-Africanist, pan-Arab, third-world, Atlantic and tropical practices, feminisms on the border, bastard theories, cybergologies, Malinche translations, internationalisms, etc.

Following the logic of the tempestuous shake-up and dehabituation that led Gilles Deleuze to invite us to imagine philosophy with ‘a clean-shaven Marx and a bearded Hegel’, this encounter is an invitation to think of a tropical Marx and an effeminate, African Hegel. It takes into account the critical re-readings and exercises of political resistance and utopian elaboration that are ‘Marx-ist/ian’, post-Hegelian or of the Commons, and which originated in the processes of decolonisation and gender and sexual emancipation since the first modern revolution (the Haitian Revolution of 1791, not the French Revolution), by way of the processes of decolonisation of the 1960s (the independence of Morocco and Tunisia in 1954, and the independence of Algeria in 1962), the processes of independence of the African countries (1957–1960), the Casablanca Conference (1961), the Black Movement, until the present process of the Commons and the Bolivian indigenous process.

Thus a different profile of the museum is drawn, one that no longer functions as an instrument for legitimising the colonial processes, but as a critical and reflective apparatus proposing other ways of managing the archives, other forms of representation, other world-fictions.

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dates
27 November 2014 – 29 November 2014
title
Decolonising the Museum
dates
27 November 2014 – 29 November 2014
title
Decolonising the Museum
participants
Aymara Arreaza
Declinación Magnética
Clémentine Deliss
Diásporas Críticas
Fatima El-Tayeb
María Galindo
Alanna Lockward
Yolanda Onghena
Daniela Ortiz
Cuzco
1985
Península
Suely Rolnik
related activities
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videos
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Aymara Arreaza R. y Lorena Bou Linhares/Ruta de Autor – YouTube
Aymara Arreaza R. y Lorena Bou Linhares/Ruta de Autor – YouTube
Esta conferencia se enmarca dentro del encuentro "Descolonizar el museo" www.macba.cat/es/descolonizar-museo
playlist
24:43
Aymara Arreaza R. y Lorena Bou Linhares/Ruta de Autor – YouTube
06:50
Diásporas Críticas – YouTube
01:24:03
Daniela Ortiz: "La colonialidad en las exigencias de integración a la población migrante" + Wu Tsang – YouTube
17:13
Península – YouTube
18:13
Declinación Magnética – YouTube
01:24:03
Daniela Ortiz: "La colonialidad en las exigencias de integración a la población migrante" + Wu Tsang – YouTube
01:52:39
Clémentine Deliss: "Coleccionar y comisariar lo desconocido" – YouTube
55:14
Seminari Descolonitzar el museu | María Galindo/Mujeres Creando | MACBA – YouTube
01:22:18
Suely Rolnik: "Micropolíticas del pensamiento" – YouTube
53:15
Fatima El-Tayeb:"La vida queer de la diáspora" – YouTube