RAM Talk: Place History and the ArchiveNov 3, 2017 Friday 19:00 - 21:00

Catherine Wagner
Jiang Jun
MEM Art Space, No.185 Yuanmingyuan Road, 2F
English with Chinese Interpretation
Platform: Education Research
  • About the Talk

    Catherine Wagner’s lecture entitled Place History and the Archive covers a 40-year trajectory of her work including her public practice where she has constructed art installations in the public domain. Wagner’s incisive conceptually driven photography moves seamlessly between different strategies and content following her interest in deconstructing the ways in which knowledge is transferred.

    Place History and the Archive includes early projects in which Wagner began working with strategies that she calls “archeology in reverse”. Projects such as Early California Landscape, Moscone Site, and 1275 Minnesota Street employ this strategy of considered observation. Wagner interrogates the built environment as a metaphor for how we construct our cultural identities. 

    Wagner examines institutions as various as art museums, braille publications, science labs, classrooms, the home, and Disneyland. Wagner was an artist in residence at several Human Genome Project sites, worked on a reimagining of Frankenstein at the Stanford Linear Accelerator, and was a Rome Prize Fellow at the American Academy in Rome, to name a few. Major bodies of work have developed from these seemingly disparate settings all of which emanate from Wagner’s interest in the dissemination and transfer of knowledge.  

    Many of Wagner’s projects recontextualize various archives and notions of the “masterpiece”, including Re-Classifying History, Rome Works, and A Narrative History of the Light Bulb thereby questioning the representations of how history has been recorded. Series such as, Reparations, and Transliterate investigates the processes of cultural change and redefinition.

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  • About the Speaker

    Catherine Wagner,Dean of the Fine Arts Division, Mills College.Over the course of her career Catherine Wagner has been observing the built environment as a metaphor for how we construct our cultural identities. She has examined institutions as various as art museums and science labs, the home, and Disneyland. Many of Ms. Wagner’s projects have focused on the recontextualization of various archives resulting in projects such as Re-Classifying History, A Narrative History of the Lightbulb, Reparations, and Rome Works. Catherine Wagner has been an active international artist, working photographically as well as with site-specific art, lecturing extensively at museums and universities for over 30 years. Her work is represented in major collections nationally and around the world, including the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, SFMOMA, The Whitney Museum of American Art, Museum of Modern Art NY, and etc.

  • About the Host

    Jiang Jun, an artist and art critic who graduated from Kunstakademie Münster receiving the title Meisterschüler of Prof. Aernout Mik, a reseacher at the theoretical studio of Shanghai Public Art Cooperation Center (PACC) and the International Public Art Association (IPA), and one of the founders of the Art Bureau of Investigation. He is currently a PhD candidate of iconology and exhibition culture studies at China Academy of Art and Peking University, and lives and works in Hangzhou and Shanghai.

  • About the Series

    The Rockbund Art Museum (RAM) and the Public Art Cooperation Center (PACC) are jointly presenting a series of academic talks on “the publicness of the community” (die Öffentlichkeit der Gemeinschaft) from August to December, 2017.

    Today, the concept of “community” (Gemeinschaft) has become particularly important, as the increasing division of labor and fast mobility in society result in a status that “all that is solid melts into air, and all that is holy is profaned,” as described in the Manifesto of the Communist Party. Since the start of modernity, lives of traditional communities have been degrading towards two opposite directions: the atomization of individuals, and the construction of new alternative communities. The degradation can be found everywhere, from large organizations such as a regional political union or a country, to small units like a working group or a one-to-one relationship. In addition, the current global economic integration is leading to fast and unstable change of life, as well as the rapid gathering, division and reconstruction of communities… A stable relation and the pursuit toward a community have emerged as a compensatory measure for or the resistance to an atomized and alienated society, and an attempt to regain a healthy and humane life – living as a socially integrated individual.

    In March 2017, RAM hosted the Audiences International Symposium, aiming to re-examine the definition of “audience” and its implication to today’s people and institutions. Over the past two decades, a new round of museum expansion and the significant changes of societies and technologies have resulted in reforms on daily operation of institutions. Therefore, it is increasingly critical to figure out how museums and art institutions, both identified as public institutions, should respond to such changes. Today, art institutions are performing more and more functions: they have to not only establish deeper and more diverse interactions between modern art projects and their audience, but provide extensive public activities outside the institutions for a wide range of social groups.

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  • Ticket info

    Free admission, reservation is required.

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RAM Talk: Place History and the Archive

Nov 3, 2017 Friday 19:00 - 21:00

Please contact info@rockbundartmuseum.org for more than 2 persons.

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