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Curator Corral
by Marcus Civin

I am an artist and in terms of my own activities in the realm of curating, I think of myself as an organizer, one who extends invitations. And I think of myself as an instigator; I want to build decent, clean platforms to see work made by artists I admire.

I have begun to ask curators how they think of themselves and what they want to accomplish. I am including here a sample of this research. I think the statements in and of themselves are beautiful. At this point, though, I have even more questions than when I started—wistful, political, personal, practical questions…

For example, is working as a curator a form of justice (bringing to light the unknown)? Is curating an impulse to educate? What kind of work is possible/risky/impossible in a commercial context? What kind of work sails or fails in a community center? What kind of objects, documents, or collections does a curator keep in their car, in their pocket, on their desk, in their home? What kinds of freedoms do curators take? Where, if at all, does the curator show their hand as a mediator or an author? Where, then, is truth? What, then, is moral? What can never be shown? In curating, do we hope for something new, or do we hope for curators as custodians, for continuity of tradition?

The curators who write-in here, as a group, are: an associate director of a gallery in London; an independent curator who has worked at alternative art spaces and university galleries, recently around Chicago; a curatorial team who prefer to stay anonymous at this point, in reflection on their work in Mexico, Los Angeles, and New York; an artist and curator who runs a house-as-gallery project in Baltimore, Maryland, called Guest Spot; and a final curator who let me ask her the hardest questions. I am particularly interested in this group—a young group—because, to me, they speak with honesty, humor, and even some wonder about what they are doing, like they are inventing themselves.

—Marcus Civin

Top Image: First Image on Google for the word "Curator" 

Posted by Marcus Civin on 9/14/11 | tags: curator

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