Suzana Milevska: Curator as a Translator of Theory into Practice

Laboratorium of Curatorial Practices
Season 12: 2008/09

Workshop in four parts

April 10-13, 2009
Project Room SCCA, Metelkova 6, Ljubljana

On Friday, the 10th of April, the four-day workshop led by Suzana Milevska and titled Curator as a Translator of Theory into Practice began. Despite several applications only two participants were actually present at the workshop which turned out to be an advantage. Michele Drascek and Metka Kralj have succeeded to conceptualize and execute a whole curatorial project in the span of four days due to their close cooperation and extreme engagement.

The workshop was based on the importance of contemporary curatorial practices with theoretical discourses. The term “translation” (rather than “application”) stands for the awareness of the confinements appearing when theoretical concepts are used as justification for curatorial choices of models, strategies and attitudes, rather than as starting points for self-assessment and for pondering of our art and curatorial choices.

Friday and Saturday mornings were focused on lectures, close reading and analysis of several theoretical texts. Special attention was given to reading of Alain Badiou’s Fifteen Theses on Contemporary Art. The analysis of an art work by Badiou offered the participants a structure that they could use for the element of the project that they were to realize in the next few days.

On Saturday afternoon, the participants already conceptualized a project that they executed on Sunday and Monday. It was based on their common knowledge of pedagogy and on exploration of participatoriness in the realms of contemporary art. They succeeded to transfer the theoretical knowledge gained during the course of the workshop into practice.

On Sunday the participants have, partly in the offices of the SCCA and partly in a private apartment, filmed video interviews with six participants that were invited to participate in the “workshop within a workshop”.
They asked them three questions:

  • Does art offer truths?
  • Is there a difference between male and female art?
  • Have you ever participated in an artistic event?

On Monday the workshop moved to the offices of “Art center za kreativnost mladih in otrok” in Vila Čira Čara on Komenskega 9 Street, to be able to edit the recorded material there as they encountered some difficulties in using “video editing” in at the SCCA. The video was later presented to five of the present participants and to the workshop mentor Suzana Milevska who commented on each statement and in the end the participants drew a diagram of the process. The created video documents will be available in the archive SCCA-Ljubljana from May 2009 onwards.

Petja Grafenauer

Call for application (program)