Activities Courses and seminars

Decolonising the Museum

Curated by Beatriz Preciado

27 to 29 Nov. 2014

Film Still, Wildness (2012) Directed by Wu Tsang

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?

With the support of the Culture Programme of the European Union


27, 28 AND 29 NOVEMBER 2014
Venue: Meier Auditorium
Free admission. Booking required. Activity in English and Spanish with simultaneous translation. All sessions can be followed via streaming. Limited places

Thursday 27 November, 6 pm

Meier Auditorium. Doors will open at 5.30 pm
6 – 6.40 pm Fatima El-Tayeb: The Queer Life of Diaspora
7 – 7.40 pm Suely Rolnik: Micropolitcs of Thought. Suggestions for Those Who Try to Evade the Colonial Unconscious
8 – 8.40 pm María Galindo/Mujeres Creando: There is no Decolonisation without Depatriarchalisation

Friday 28 November, 6 pm

Meier Auditorium. Doors will open at 5.30 pm
6 – 6.40 pm Clémentine Deliss: Collecting and Curating Life’s Unknowns: Past Ethnography and Current Art Practice
7 – 7.20 pm Yolanda Onghena: Fragments of Categorisation
7.30 – 8.10 pm Alanna Lockward: Decolonial Aesthetics

[LAST MINUTE] Today, after the talking, PEI students have organized "La Ruta de la Coca". Meeting point: Auditori Meier main entrance

Saturday 29 November, 4 – 7 pm

Meier Auditorium
4 – 4.20 pm Magnetic Declination
4.35 – 4.55 pm Península
5.10 – 5.30 pm Daniela Ortiz: Coloniality in the Integration Requirements of the Migrant Population
5.45 – 6.05 pm Diásporas Críticas
6.20 – 6.40 pm Aymara Arreaza R. and Lorena Bou Linhares / Ruta de Autor

7.15 pm Film screening: Wu Tsang, Wildness. USA, 2012, 75 min. Introduction by the author

Boychild presents Untitled
Special time at 9 pm, MACBA Atrium

(De)colonial Barcelona. Overseas Possessions and Urban Transformation (1835–98)

B.D. Women: From Colonial Wounds to Sexual Dissidence. Reading workshop conducted by Diásporas Críticas


Registration Sold out.
During the sessions, video streaming will be available here.

Students who do not arrive at the start of the session will have their places allocated to those waiting in the Auditorium in strict order of arrival.


Public Programmes
Tel: 93 481 33 68

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