Angela Harutyunyan: Importing “Curator”: Politics of Representation and Recognition in Contemporary Armenian Art

Laboratorium of Curatorial Practices
Season 10: 2006/07

Series of Lectures on Curatorial and Institutional Practice

Thursday, January 18, 2007, at 7. p.m.
SCCA Project Room, Metelkova 6, Ljubljana, Slovenia

In the first part of her talk she introduced the word ‘curator’ (and its constructed Armenian equivalent – ‘hamadrogh’) as an imported concept in the context of contemporary Armenian art which participates in the ongoing signification of other imported terms. She traced its origins and implications by contextualizing it within several artistic and curatorial practices in Armenia.She then proceeded to critically outline the history of curating since the mid 90’s in the context of the endemic politics of representation and recognition. She did this by discussing two prevailing modes of curatorial engagement – the artist as curator and the curator as artist. As opposed to these dominant trends, she argued that the critical role of the curator today is not to pursue (self-)representation but to offer a critique of such a position. She held that it is precisely when the curator manages to facilitate dialog between the artists, the artist and the audience, as well as the artist/audience and herself, curating takes on the role of a cultural hermeneutic and intermediation beyond self-representation. This resists the hierarchical relation of artistic representation over and above the act of curatorial reflection. Such an approach she argued, complicates the curator’s role as someone who combines the intermediation of relations with the function of evaluation and reflection.

In the second part of a discussion, she addressed the tasks, aims as well as the relevance of the curators’ summer school that she is involved in organizing with art critic and curator Nazareth Karoyan. Finally, she addressed methodological, conceptual and practical problems and difficulties they had been facing since the beginning of this initiative.”

The lecture was given in English.

Download lecture: Importing the “Curator”: Politics of Representation and Recognition in Contemporary Armenian Art (pdf, 99KB)

Angela Harutyunyan
PHd candidate in Art History and Visual Studies at University of Machester, UK. Member of the National Association of Art Critics in Armenia. She received her first graduate degree in Art History from Yerevan State University in Armenia. As a curator in the Armenian Center for Contemporary Experimental Art from 2002-2004, she has organized several solo exhibitions of contemporary Armenian artists as well as curated an international festival of media art called “Public_Media_Space” in Yerevan, Armenia. In 2006 she was a coordinator of the First International Summer School for Art Curators, Yerevan, Armenia.

Angela Harutyunyan - predavanje
Angela Harutyunyan - predavanje
Angela Harutyunyan - predavanje