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Engagement and Learning > Talks, Lectures & Events

IADT ARC / IMMA Sessions: Seminar - Exhibition Histories

Thursday 23 March 2017, 2.00pm - 5.30pm / Project Spaces

Organised in collaboration with IADTs ARC MA programme, this seminar focuses on past exhibitions of contemporary art that have changed the way art is seen, made and understood. Taking into account broader effects of digital technologies, global contexts and postcolonial realities, this seminar highlights the crucial role artists and audience play in questioning and shaping exhibition forms.

Presentations will be given by those whose work and research revolves around exhibition practices and discourses. Chaired by Dr Maeve Connolly, CoDirector of the ARC Programme at IADT, speakers include Dr Lucy Steeds, Senior Research Fellow at Afterall, London (and commissioning editor of Afteralls Exhibition Histories book series), Kate Strain, Artistic Director, Grazer Kunstverein, Peter Maybury, artist, designer, musician, exhibition curator, and researchers from IADTs ARC programme.

In thinking about how and why we might critique exhibition histories, seminar participants will focus on key themes and debates within exhibition making such as (i) boundary pushing artistic practices and curatorial concepts (ii) exhibiting inside/outside the art space (iii) working with other disciplines and embracing audiences, contexts and archives. Looking back to the late 1960s to present, it will cross both inventive exhibition strategies of the past that influenced speakers, as well as contemporary art and its historiography.

This seminar provides ample opportunity for lively debate and the sharing of ideas between all participants in advance of the IMMA / NIVAL programme ROSC 50 1967 / 2017 (05 May - 18 June 2017, Project Spaces).

A Performance ROSC: Fiction of the Contemporary will be hosted by ARC research students and followed by refreshments, to conclude proceedings.

Further Information
Dr Lucy Steeds is Senior Research Fellow within the art programme at Central Saint Martins (CSM), University of the Arts London (UAL). She manages the Exhibition Histories project for Afterall Art Research Centre and contributes to the MRes Art: Exhibition Studies course at CSM. Across UAL, Lucy also has responsibility for doctoral research training as Convenor of the Research Network (RNUAL). She has a PhD in Cultural History from Goldsmiths College, University of London and her curatorial experience is anchored in six years of work at Arnolfini in Bristol (1998/2004). Lucys research interests lie in the history and theory of contemporary art on the basis that arts potential is event based and context dependent. Her research is centred on the field of exhibition histories, with exhibition understood in an expanded sense, as taking on myriad forms and without necessarily privileging the museum, gallery or biennial as host. Interested in both the ontology of contemporary art and related issues of historiography, she seeks to learn from a geopolitical diversity of experiences, thinking and practices.

Kate Strain is the Artistic Director of the Grazer Kunstverein. Based between Austria and Dublin, ongoing curatorial projects include The Centre For Dying On Stage, an online research and commissioning body; Department of Ultimology, a new department established in 2016 in Trinity College Dublin; and RGKSKSRG, the paired curatorial practice of Rachael Gilbourne and Kate Strain. Strain has worked at Project Arts Centre, the National College of Art and Design, and internationally on collaborative projects in Torino, Amsterdam and St Louis.

Peter Maybury works as an artist, graphic designer, and musician. With formal training in visual communications in Dublin and London, his creative practice has expanded to encompass design for print and screen, wayfinding systems, artworks for exhibition, sound, video and curation. Peters holistic approach sees him work at the interstices of several disciplines. With a track record from nearly 20 years working to the highest degree of excellence in visual communication and design for print and screen, his broad experience has developed into extensive knowledge taking in all aspects of design, editorial, prepress and printing. Peter has wide ranging experience in working with creative practitioners and institutions, editors and curators, including over 80 individual artists publications, and more than 40 group show publications, for clients in Ireland, Belgium, Luxembourg, UK, US, Italy and Canada.

(Chair) Maeve Connolly is a Dublin-based researcher, focused on changing cultures and economies of art and media practice. She codirects the MA in Art & Research Collaboration at IADT and also teaches studio modules on the BA in Art. She is the author of TV Museum: Contemporary Art and the Age of Television (Intellect, 2014) on television as cultural form, object of critique and site of artistic intervention and The Place of Artists Cinema: Space, Site and Screen (Intellect, 2009), on aspects of the cinematic turn in art. Her recent publications include contributions to the anthologies Great Expectations: Prospects for the Future of Curatorial Education, edited by Leigh Markopoulos (Koenig Books, 2016), Exhibiting the Moving Image: History Revisited, edited by François Bovier and Adeena Mey (JRP Ringier, 2015) and The International Handbooks of Museum Studies (Wiley-Blackwell, 2015). Her curatorial projects include an online One Sentence Exhibition (with Dennis McNulty) for Kadist Art Foundation and screenings at Bluecoat (Liverpool), the Irish Film Institute, LUX (London), Project Arts Centre and Tate Modern. She is currently researching the relationship between infrastructural change and contemporary art.

ARC Programme                                                
The MA in Art & Research Collaboration is a taught Master of Arts programme delivered over two years at IADT, incorporating practice focused, art research projects developed in collaboration with project partners such as the Dublin City Council Arts Office, led by the LAB, Irish Film Institute and the Irish Museum of Modern Art.

ROSC: Fiction of the Contemporary is a publication and performance by year one MA in Art and Research Collaboration researchers in response to the ROSC archives. Through the medium of the archive the publication documents the planning and research process for a ROSC retrospective exhibition in 1992 that never reached fruition but failed in the planning process due to disagreements and a shifting external landscape. The publication encompasses internal communications, research material and wider trends in contemporary art of the time; examining the tensions and contradictions in defining, and exhibiting, the contemporary. The performance will include readings, interpretations of archival texts and a discussion addressing the controversies and contemporary debates around the ROSC exhibitions as highlighted in the publication.

IMMA/NIVAL: ROSC 50 - 1967/2017
ROSC was the first major series of exhibitions of international art in Ireland. They took place in a range of venues approximately every four years between 1967 and 1988. In 2017, to mark the 50th anniversary of the first ROSC, IMMA and NIVAL (the National Irish Visual Arts Library) are undertaking a collaborative research project to revisit the Irish art historical account of ROSC. ROSC 50 will examine the ambition, reception, controversies and legacy of the ROSC exhibitions, which had a significant impact on the development of contemporary art in Ireland.

Irish Museum of Modern Art, Royal Hospital, Kilmainham, Dublin 8, D08 FW31, Ireland
Tel: +353-1-6129900, Email:
info@imma.ie