The Constituent Museum. Constellations of Knowledge, Politics and Mediation

What if museums put relationships at the centre of their operations? The current publication is inspired by this very question, and offers a diverse, rigorous and experimental analysis of what is commonly known as education, mediation or interpretation within museum institutions. Rather than a passive receiver of predefined content, the visitor is regarded as an active member of a constituent body, to be facilitated, provoked, inspired and learnt from. Moving beyond the practice of mediation as such, the publication situates constituent practices of collaboration and co-production within the existing social-political (neoliberal) context in order to reimagine and affect both the physical and organisational structures of museums and galleries.

A compliation of new commissions and case studies, The Constituent Museum draws on the diverse experiences of the institutions that form the museum confederation L’Internationale, and those of the partners with whom it has collaborated during the five-year programme ‘The Uses of Art: The Legacy of 1848 and 1989’. Central to the development of this programme was the instigation of a ‘Mediation Task Force’ to explore and address some of the key issues surrounding the evolution of relationships between museums and their publics.

This publication attempts to redefine the role and significance of the museum as a collaborative project between audience, artist and museum workers. It frames the museum as an important part of the community, where activism, its histories, and its visual and intellectual thinking are gathered and questioned.

L'Internationale with the support of the Culture Programme of the European Union

Logos L'internationale + Cofinanciado por el programa Europa Creativa de la UE

L'Internationale is a confederation of six major European modern and contemporary art institutions and partners: Moderna galerija (MG, Ljubljana, SI); Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía (MNCARS, Madrid, ES); MACBA. Museu d'Art Contemporani de Barcelona (MACBA, Barcelona, ES); Museum van Hedendaagse Kunst Antwerpen (M HKA, Antwerp, BE); SALT (Istanbul and Ankara, TR) and Van Abbemuseum (VAM, Eindhoven, NL).
This publication is part of the programme "The Uses of Art: The Legacy of 1848 and 1989", co-financed by the Culture Programme of the European Union and developed by L'Internationale together with KASK School of Arts University College Ghent, Liverpool John Moores University, Middlesbrough Insitute of Modern Art and the University of Hildesheim.

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Essay books

Publisher: Valiz with L'internationale, 2018 | supported by Liverpool John Moores University, Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art, L'Internationale, KASK School of Arts, Gent, European Union, Culture Programme

Eng 978-94-92095-42-8