Access All Areas
9 - 10 November 2006
Issues surrounding the ways in which museums and galleries engage their public came under the spotlight at the symposium Access All Areas..., which presented a vast range of perspectives from programming policies to learning methodologies and institutional critique. The symposium also explored the role of national cultural institutions in today's society, new roles for artists and audiences and outcomes of artistic production.
"The emphasis which museums and galleries place on their education, community and outreach programmes has been significant in raising awareness of the cultural interface between the institutions and their many publics. Many initiatives have taken place to interrogate the role and function of museums in society and a growing body of international research is being disseminated through professional bodies worldwide"
Helen O'Donoghue, Senior Curator: Head of Education and Community Programmes.( 2006)
Programme Presented Papers and Speakers
Day One, Thursday 9 November 2006
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A Usable Lesson from the Past: Newark's "New Museum" a Century Later: Carol Duncan,
(Professor Emerita, Ramapo College of
New Jersey, USA).
A Usable Lesson from the Past: Newark's "New Museum" a Century Later:
Early in the last century, in the city of Newark, New Jersey, the reformer John Cotton Dana began planning a new kind of museum, one that would be both educational and entertaining for the city's population of largely immigrant workers. He wanted his museum to be a vibrant public space in which a diverse audience could experience new visions of the future. Duncan explained how Dana's ideas are relevant today, not so much for the specific museum model he advocated as for the questions he asked and for his still powerful critique of the fashionable museum trends of his day.
Profile: Carol Duncan is a writer and was lecturer and Professor Emeritus at Ramapo College of New Jersey, USA until 2005. She is well known as one of the pioneers of a new socio-political approach to art history and criticism and has been one of the strongest feminist voices in new art history. Her works include The Pursuit of Pleasure: The Rococo Revival in French Romantic Art (New York: Garland, 1975); The Aesthetics of Power: Essays in the Critical History of Art (Cambridge University Press, 1992) and Civilizing Rituals: Inside Public Art Museums (London: Routledge, 1995) which was awarded a grant for completion from the American Council of Learned Societies and translated into several languages.
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Engage or Educate: Helen O' Donoghue,
(Senior Curator: Education and Community Programmes, Irish Museum of Modern Art, Ireland).
Engage or Educate:
Helen O' Donoghue
Since the Irish Museum of Modern Art opened it has placed the engagement between the artist, artwork and public/s at the core of its policy. Helen O'Donoghue explored the evolving programme at IMMA over the past 15 years, the strategies that have been developed to create access to art and artists and how it has shaped and been shaped by national policies and practices. She used examples of work at IMMA to raise questions for future access strategies and programmes.
Profile: Helen O' Donoghue is Senior Curator and Head of Education & Community Programmes, Irish Museum of Modern Art, Ireland. Appointed to her current role in 1991, she has developed the programme from the inception of the Museum. Currently working with four curatorial staff, the programme includes initiatives for both formal and informal learning. Opportunities to gain access to and engage with art and artists are created through the Artists' Residency Programme, the Artists' Panel and with artists in the Collection on the National Programme and those exhibiting in temporary exhibitions at the Museum. The department regularly curates exhibitions and produces publications evolving from these programmes.
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Giving Elbow Room: Victoria Hollows
(Museum Manager, Scottish Museum of Modern Art GoMA, Scotland)
Giving Elbow Room: Victoria Hollows
Victoria Hollows outlined the background to GoMA's series of biennial social justice programmes, thus representing a policy move that prioritises social justice issues whilst celebrating the best in contemporary art practice.
Profile: Victoria Hollows is Museum Manager, Scottish Museum of Modern Art GOMA, Scotland. Prior to moving to Glasgow, Hollows was Curator of Art for Scarborough Museum & Gallery in Yorkshire, Exhibitions Assistant at the Midlands Art Centre, Birmingham, and the Mercer Art gallery Harrogate. She is also an area representative for Engage, the National Association for Gallery Education, as well as a member of the Engage Scotland Development Group and is a Distance Learning Tutor for the University of Leicester's Museums Studies Masters programme on galleries, audiences and artists.
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Why collect experiences? The communicative challenge of contemporary art as a mission for MAC: Luiz Guilherme Vergara, (Director, The Museo de Arte Contemporanea, MAC, Niteroi)
Why collect experiences? The communicative challenge of contemporary art as a mission for MAC: Luiz Guilherme Vergara
Luiz Guilherme Vergara outlined the philosophy and practices applied in MAC since it opened ten years ago and focused on the curatorial and education strategies used to engage different audiences, inspired by the organic architecture of Niemeyer's design which is a direct dialogue with the landscape. Luiz discussed his current role as Director and previous work and strategies as education curator.
Profile: Luiz Gulherme Vergara is Director, of The Museo de Arte Contemporanea, MAC, Niteroi, Brazil, and Professor of the Art Department in Universidade Federal Fluminense (UFF) in Brazil. Previously as Education Curator in MAC he directed Art and Environment, involving the Family Doctors' Program, Art, Culture and Citizenship, an education program for the Cultural Center of Bank of Brazil of Rio de Janeiro (1999-2004), Museu de Porto Seguro/Fundação Roberto Marinho a participatory cross-cultural project between the Portugese and the Brazilian Indians (2004) and Museums and Schools in Movements (2004-2005) - a partnership project integrating different museums in the city of Rio de Janeiro.
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The role of a National Gallery in today's society:
The role of a National Gallery in today's society: Kaija Kaitavuori
Kaija Kaitavuori contextualised the Finnish National Gallery within the cultural life in Finland. She looked at how the birth of Kiasma fits into the discourse of nation state and national institutions - asking if, and in what way, it is a continuation or a break in the history of the National Gallery?
Profile: Kaija Kaitavuori is Director at KEHYS, Art Museum Development, Finland and is in charge of developing the art museum sector on a national level in collaboration with other museums, focusing on development projects and their coordination. KEHYS engages in research, training and publishing, and takes part in cultural policy debate. It also develops operating models and tools for public-oriented museum work. She has been Head of Education, Contemporary Art Museum, Kiasma, in Helsinki since its establishment in 1997 and is currently working for three years at KEHYS.
Day Two, Friday 10 November 2006
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Blackboard Singing in the Dead of Night: the loss of a pedagogic palimpsest from the gallery and the classroom: Dr Howard Hollands.
Blackboard Singing in the Dead of Night: the loss of a pedagogic palimpsest from the gallery and the classroom: Dr Howard Hollands
Dr.Howard Hollands explored the semiotic spaces of gallery and classroom using the blackboard as signifier and art object.
Profile: Dr.Howard Hollands is Principal Lecturer, Art and Design Education, School of Arts and Education, Middlesex University, UK and joint co-ordinator of REALL (Research in the Arts, Language and Learning). REALL is an interdisciplinary research team engaging with projects that explore playful pedagogies, using art practice as both a generative and transformative tool. He has taught in London secondary schools and his areas of research include the relationship between the pedagogic palimpsest in the gallery and the classroom. A current example is Field - an arts and humanities module in the Primary BA Education degree, which examines the relationships between space, environment, community and citizenship through an interdisciplinary project-based framework
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Unsustainable Sustainable: The Case of Independent Organisations in China: Davide Quadrio, (Curator and Director, Biz Art, Self-supported and not-for-profit art center and Artists Residency Programme), Shanghai, China.
Unsustainable Sustainable: The Case of Independent Organisations in China: Davide Quadrio
Davide Quadrio talked about the strategy of developing an art organization based on grassroots artistic production working in a 'hostile' environment where no public funding is put in place to support private cultural initiatives. He analysed this from an historical point of view, looking at the political, economic and cultural situation of China's recent past.
Profile: Davide Quadrio is a Curator and Director of Biz Art the first creative not-for-profit and independent art laboratory in China. Through BizArt and its team, he organises exhibitions, workshops and artistic activities, sourcing venues and sponsorships, designing spaces and dealing with the media. Over the last seven years, he organised over 150 exhibitions and events in China and abroad, developing relationships with local and foreign institutions and building up an energetic independent art space in Shanghai. He works in close collaboration with foreign governments and is responsible for the Arts Council of England's artists-in residence project in Shanghai, he was Creative Director of Bund18, and the Olivo Barbieri, Site Specific Shanghai Biennale (2006).
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The Art of Encounter: Janusz Byszewski, (Curator, Laboratory of Creative Education, Centre of Contemporary Art, Warsaw, Poland)
The Art of Encounter: Janusz Byszewski
Janusz Byszewski explored the term 'art of encounter'. His analysis made reference to gallery activities created in cooperation with the International Collection of Art in the Centre for Contemporary Art (CCA) in Warsaw. Byszewski explained how the art of encounter is expressed in many ways, adapting itself to the many forms that are presented in contemporary art. Byszeweski states - 'like contemporary art, the art of encounter also breaks with routines, habits'.
Profile: Janusz Byszewski has worked as an Art Educator, Art Therapist and Curator of the Laboratory of Creative Education, Centre of Contemporary Art, Warsaw, Poland, since 1990. He has been Course Director of Designing Creative Situations at the Institute of Polish Culture at Warsaw University, since 1996. Previously he was a co-organiser of the group pARTner (1983-1990). He has collaborated with European and International partners on creative projects and has received many awards for his work. He has made contributions to publications and seminars on art mediation and cultural animation. His publications include: Touch of Memory, Helsinki (2004); Algorytmy Tworczosci, Computerworld 45/2004.
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The Edge is not the Margin: Dr Veronica Sekules
Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts, University of East Anglia
The Edge is not the Margin: Dr Veronica Sekules
In the field of education Dr Veronica Sekules has a particular interest in developing methodologies which explore means of understanding that can, in turn, lead to creativity. Her paper explored the learning that happens at the 'edges' of museum programming, drawing on a number of case studies including, Visual Dialogues (2005-6).
Profile: Dr Veronica Sekules is Head of Education and Research, Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts, University of East Anglia, where she is responsible for the public and family events programmes as well as for all work with schools and other educational users. She was also Project Manager, Visual Dialogues (2005-6), Tate Britain, UK) Her degree and doctorate are in art history, specialising in medieval art. She has an MA in Education and conducts research in visual arts and museums and galleries, a field in which she also published, having recently co-edited an International reader Researching Visual Arts Education in Museums and Art Galleries, Kluwer, Dordrecht (2003). She was seconded to Tate as project manager for the Visual Dialogues project working in partnership with museums in Birmingham, Manchester, Sheffield and Newcastle (2004-6).
Chair Person Dr. Niamh O'Sullivan
Chair Person Dr. Niamh O'Sullivan has research interests in the history of Irish and American art, graphic design, and art education. She is currently working on Irish-American art of the nineteenth century. Selected publications include Re:Orientations. Aloysius O'Kelly: Painting, Politics and Popular Culture, Dublin, (1999); 'The Iron Cage of Femininity' in Timothy P. Foley and Sean Ryder Editors, Ideology and Ireland in the Nineteenth-Century, Dublin, (1998); Irlande, La Vie Culturelle (essays by Irish historians and cultural theorists), Le Centre de Recherches Historiques, University of Louvain, (1989); and Children's Art Catalogue, Rosc Editor,(1984). She has written for CIRCA Art Magazine, editing a number of issues on art education and visual identity; Eire-Ireland; History Ireland; The Irish Arts Review and The Irish Literary Supplement. She was art critic of the Sunday Tribune and has written for The Irish Times.
Discussion Moderators: Janice Hough, Coordinator Artist Residency Programme, IMMA and Mark Maguire Curator, Education and Community Programmes, IMMA