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This second conversation in the Hammer Museum’s Reimagining the Museum series, Critical Curating in the Americas explores radical curatorial practices within Latin America and the Caribbean as models for the future of anti-racist, equitable, and inclusive work within US museums.
In response to calls for the eradication of the colonial practices integral to the history of the museum, institutions across the United States are faced with the task of developing methods for undoing their centuries-long relationship to the political and social project of colonialism. This practice of negotiating with art institutions’ history of exclusion and erasure has been a concern for curators, activists, academics, and museum workers throughout Latin America, the Caribbean, and their international diasporas.
For this discussion, Hammer chief curator Connie Butler, along with curatorial assistants Vanessa Arizmendi and Nika Chilewich, joins Sandra Benites, (MASP, São Paulo); Natalia de la Rosa (Museo Comunitario Sierra Hermosa, Mexico); Miguel A. López (TEORética, Costa Rica); and María Elena Ortiz (Pérez Art Museum, Miami) to examine how institutional networks in Latin America have responded to museums’ systematic erasure of indigenous, Black, queer, and other marginalized histories. Central to this discussion are the questions: What decolonial strategies have curators in the global south employed in response to racism, sexism, and classism? What lessons can US museums take from these strategies as they respond to the growing movement in the support for Black lives and against state violence?
By engaging with the different projects and areas of research put forward by the four speakers, this panel examines some of the legacies of decolonial organizing in museums that have existed globally, highlighting the challenges facing a newer generation of curators guiding the future of art institutions.
The program is bilingual, with presentations subtitled in English and Spanish and translations of Q&A session.