Programa educativo
Programa educativo
Programa educativo

Research lines

Under the title MACBA Collection. A Short Century, the permanent display of the Collection offers a chronological journey from 1929 to the present. The exhibition highlights the distinctions between the different artistic tendencies, as well as the different ways artists have responded to concerns such as economic crises, war, colonial issues, feminist struggles and sexual dissidence.

Any critical work related to the collections of a public institution must revolve around the tension between memory and amnesia, and between the construction of identity and its resistance, since a collection is more than the sum of its objects, artefacts and artworks. Without question, it is also much more than a list of authors and artists. A collection is built upon the affections and stories that make up its identity. Consequently, it plays a fundamental role in the configuration of the canons of each era.

Based on these parameters and addressing the Collection as a device subject to critical analysis, the starting point for MACBA’s Department of Education is the study of the possibilities of building narratives and emotional memory around the artworks featured in the Collection. Taking artistic production as a manifestation of a singularity that can only be understood in relation to a specific context and time, the educational programme for the 2019–20 academic year will pivot around three axes. The first investigates the Collection in a transversal way, as a story-building space that has been evolved by the research group formed by teachers, educators and artists, and directed by Julia Ramírez Blanco.

This year, the group, established in January 2018, will incorporate new directions reflecting on a collection’s potential for pedagogical experimentation. In parallel, the education programme around the MACBA Collection for primary-school pupils is to be reinforced by bringing them together with artists in a series of sessions, where the exhibition becomes a workshop addressing the children’s own experiences through artistic strategies. In these activities, the children’s autonomy is enhanced during the visit to the Museum through their direct approach to the artworks. Finally, the programme includes tours for secondary-school groups focusing on artistic practices and their responses to the different identity conflicts of the last century, which extend to the present day.

If all educational practices are underlined by the body and this is key to the configuration of experiences, in the Museum space this is even more relevant, since one of the main functions of art is the ability to activate bodies and subjectivities through the senses. That is why all the educational work in the Museum is based on the desire to awaken the body from the anaesthesia to which it is subjected by the neoliberal project and its overload of images and stimuli. On the other hand, we are also interested in thinking about the body from a social perspective: defined by sexuality, gender, identity, origin and class. In short, the body understood as the central element in the tangle of conventions that generate our behavioural patterns and material address to the world. Although our programme is permeated by the importance of the body, what allows us to explore the political limitations of inhabiting it are the practices most closely linked to performance. We therefore conceive the Museum as a place that mobilises the ‘other’ knowledges connected with what is considered ‘minor’: the knowledge of the body. 

This course of specific work with the body focuses on the space of the Museum itself and its exhibitions as worlds containing other worlds. The various activities are carried out by artists who, together with the educators of the Museum’s team, have developed the programme and given continuity to research lines initiated in previous courses. Thus, in the case of primary education, the Museum is approached as a space for artistic thought, using narration and performance. Guided by artists, secondary-school pupils will explore the fascinating work of Charlotte Posenenske, continuing a project already begun with the Brossa and Jaume Plensa exhibitions, and which is conducted in relation to the limits of the Museum, its volume and relationship to performance. And, finally, a second edition of the Flatus vocis workshop will be held, in which Laia Estruch will use her own voice to configure soundscapes eschewing all notions of pre-established normality. 

Like schools, museums have often acted as regulatory institutions of a certain order, in response to an alleged social agreement regarding the construction and consensus of standards. Thus, while schools have supported the processes of normalisation and discipline, museums have configured the rules of taste and been in charge of building the canon. In recent decades, defying the norms of behaviour that these institutions impose, and, above all, reflecting on what constitutes the discourses of domination that they hide, has become both central and inexhaustible, and is approached from various critical-thinking and activist perspectives. We intend to generate processes in which ‘rare pedagogies’ can occur: those that question established roles and fixed identities, and which explore the different ways in which educators and learners relate to knowledge, but also between themselves. Not only from reflective practice, but also from educational activity. 

In short, we aim to activate a situated practice that opens cracks in what we call ‘reality’, but which is nothing more than a painted curtain reflecting our naturalised ideology. In this sense, and as stated by the artist Daniela Ortiz, we urgently need to think of other ways of relating to knowledge that will question power relations and fundamental inequalities, and make them visible. We therefore understand education as a practice of disrupting normality, as a space that generates dissent, which, in some way, breaks with the regulatory imagination


One of the great challenges of this educational programme is to break the traditional logics inscribed in our bodies and the subjectivities that determine who knows and who doesn’t, who should learn and who should teach. We aim to distance ourselves from any rigid ideas on education and those who see it as a discipline based on techniques and role models. In this sense, we believe that the experience of art can be very liberating due to its enormous capacity to activate all the senses and, with them, the political imagination. Our educational work is rooted in a critique of the disciplinary education model and delves into the possibilities of pedagogy as a practice of liberation. It is an experimental pedagogy or, by inverting the terms, an experimentation with pedagogy that creates critical subjects and arouses new forms of political subjectivity. 

In parallel, we are interested in influencing the communal and collective dimension that underlies each educational action, while understanding the activation of thought and imagination as multidimensional processes that escape the dilemma of thinking/acting by always participating in a set of situations, relationships and actions. From the Museum, we want to explore this capacity for collective learning to create a ‘being with’ others that cultivates critical thinking, especially at a time when knowledge is given merely instrumental value or is considered a danger or an unproductive luxury. 

As part of this process of liberating pedagogy or activating a liberating pedagogical imagination, we wish to question all fixed categories in the world of education, as well as the conception of learning as the accumulation of professional knowledge and qualifications. Thus, we approach the organisation of knowledge as a political activity and challenge a regime that explains the world without leaving any room for doubt. In this sense, POSTSCRIPT. Artists’ correspondence with schools invites teachers to introduce art that is not domesticated in the classroom: five artists send art proposals by mail to various schools, including actions to carry out, objects with which to experiment or instructions to be met. All of them generate situations outside the school logic, engendering expectation, strangeness and disruption. Starting from the recovery of traditional knowledge, with this practice we will begin to defy the logic of hegemonic knowledge, enabling new spaces for coexistence. 

Educational processes are not generated spontaneously: they need shared complicities and concerns. It is necessary to establish long-lasting, flexible, collaborative relationships aimed at communities and agents close to the museum environment. Starting from this premise, the museum acts less as an entity with a fixed identity and more as a space influenced by its surrounding forces. 

Proximity is an ideal space from which to consider certain realities: from migration to issues related to housing, displacement and the struggle for various social rights, labour relations and the coexistence between cultures. Working in a micro-environment allows us to detect and explore the most relevant issues of the moment. We are interested in working ‘with’ and ‘inside’ the neighbourhood, looking for intergenerational meeting points where we can be with other people and learn together. 

This year we are committed to reinforcing the Museum’s sense of belonging to the neighbourhood and to addressing the public space as a place of continuous learning, where the subjectivities, bodies and voices that inhabit it can be analysed. We intend to create new educational uses for the square outside, the Museum and the street, to intervene and transform them collectively. And we want to reflect on timeshare, on the concept of permeability and on the Museum as a space where we can share processes away from consumerism and productivity. 

For one more year, we will continue the project Neighbourhood children with the artist Cristina Fraser, an extracurricular workshop aimed at children from the Raval between 9 and 12 years old. This is designed as a place of freedom featuring plural experiences that are not limited to the exhibition space or determined by the imperative of visibility. For another year, the Museum will participate in the Sponsor your equipment programme. 

These programmes are accompanied by other actions that establish relationships with various groups in the area, and which both facilitate access to the Museum spaces and their use, while generating specific activities. 

Hello, World



This content is not available in English. You can consult it in Spanish

Entering a museum starts at home or in a plane or in a tweet
Mark Wigley