Macro was a symposium held at The Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts, Schools of Visual Arts on January 18th, 2019.
Our interest with the symposium was to explore how, where and in what ways we care for and organize the field of art at macro scale / collective levels.
What organizational forms operate at the macro scale and what visions of art do they further? Why do we have the set of macro-scale institutions we have? What might be missing at these scales? If we argue that the organizational models operating in the field of art are central in negotiating the parameters and qualities of artistic practices, and how the latter are in turn disseminated and brought to a variety of publics, then the question is what is currently being omitted but may be of urgent necessity?
Some examples of existing macro-scale organizational models in the art field outside the nexus of organizations and institutions aiding in production and presentation of art include different types of unions, interest organizations (BKF, UKK, UKS), mission-driven organizations (W.A.G.E.), global and niche financial actors (Deloitte, Athena Art Finance, Artist Pension Trust,), financial technology and other market-oriented startups (Maecenas, Codex Protocol, Artsy), galleries (Gagosian, Hauser and Wirth, David Zwirner), private foundations and national art foundations. The symposium explored the different functions and purposes such initiatives serve in rendering and articulating the reality of the art field, and what criteria by which their capabilities and limitations are to be assessed, in order to further the art field’s development.
The three speakers were curator, writer and consultant Victoria Ivanova, Director of Strategy at Gnosis Kei Kreutler, and Associate Professor of Media and Communication at the University of West London Helen Hester. The symposium was moderated by researcher Aslak Aamot Kjærulff.
Introduction by David Hilmer Rex and Aslak Aamot Kjærulff
Aslak Aamot Kjaerulff holds a PhD degree in mobilities research and action research from Roskilde University. He is a co-founder of Diakron, a platform for transdisciplinary research and practice. He teaches urban studies and strategic planning at Roskilde University. The core trajectory of his practice is to trace how concepts and ideas travel across cultures and disciplines. This involves exploratory methodological designs, where problem formulations, research processes, artistic productions are invented collaboratively in various constellations. The outcomes have been exhibitions, government reports, artworks, transdisciplinary communities of practice, radio documentaries, and fictional as well as academic texts.
Victoria Ivanova is a curator, writer and consultant living in London. Her core focus is on systemic and infrastructural conditions that shape socio-economic, political and institutional realities. To this extent, she develops innovative approaches to policy, finance and rights in the sphere of contemporary art and beyond. She is a co-founder of Izolyatsia, Real Flow and Bureau for Cultural Strategies (bux), and currently doing a practice-based PhD in collaboration with the Serpentine Galleries and London South Bank University. Back in 2010, she graduated from the LSE with an MSc in Human Rights, which was followed by a Masters in Curatorial Studies from the Center for Curatorial Studies Bard College in 2014.
Kei Kreutler is a researcher interested in how cultural narratives of technologies shape their use. She is Director of Strategy at Gnosis, and she curates events at Full Node, Europe’s largest co-working space for blockchain initiatives. She is an alum of Strelka Institute for Media, Architecture, and Design, and her work has been exhibited by organisations including the Victoria & Albert Museum, London, UK, and Ideas City, New Museum, New York, NY. Her artistic practice focuses on organizational design and utopian conspiracies.
Helen Hester + Panel
Helen Hester is Associate Professor of Media and Communication at the University of West London. She is the author of Xenofeminism (Polity, 2018) and Beyond Explicit: Pornography and the Displacement of Sex (SUNY Press, 2014).