Curating Video is a long term research project established in 2003
and led as a collaboration between Dr Amanda Beech, (Course Director,
MA Critical Writing and Curatorial Practice, Chelsea College of
Art, UAL) Dr Jaspar Joseph-Lester (Programme Leader, MA Contemporary
Art Curating) and Matthew Poole (Director, Centre for Curatorial
Studies, Essex University). It has included two exhibitions that
have been shown internationally in 5 locations, where each exhibition
has discussed the political affect of the experiences of lens-based
media artworks and how notions of the curatorial extend and respond
to this. To date, they have involved four symposia and an upcoming
book due for publication in August this year from Artwords press.
The key achievement of Curating Video has been to established discussion
on the role of video as architectural. That is, how video is ideological,
political and capable of powerful experiential affect. This is something
that has increasingly been attended to in video art and its curation,
but the consequences of identifying video in this way have
been attended to less. By taking this up in international exhibitions,
panel discussion, symposia, conferences and publications we have
developed new questions regarding the politics of art and our experience
of it in the context of contemporary democracy.
The research is now established as an ongoing exploration into
the curation of video and the politics of lens-based media, and
as a professional and educational resource (in terms of providing
the public access to writing, public discussion and documentation
of the exhibitions on the Curating Video web site). As this research
is now firmly established other links with individuals and institutions
are likely to be made more firm.
Over the next year this will include working with Victoria Walsh
at Tate Britain and, in particular, the invitation to produce a
conference at Tate Britain in November. This relationship has also
extended to invitations to participate in Tate Britain’s research
group in architecture and lens based media with Victoria Walsh and
Professor Andrew Dewdney, at LSBU, which we intend to take up in
the near future. These links have been established through the development
of the project.
The research aims of the collaborative project Curating Video are
i) to examine and theorise new forms and approaches to the curation
of video, specifically by understanding video as architectural,
object based and specific within the gallery environment; and to
ii) explore how approaching video as an architectural space that
is established as public and theatrical or as a cinematic field,
extends to particular notions of social and political praxis.
We have established this research through organising five international
exhibitions, three symposia, and a conference panel at Tokyo University,
a book published by Artwords press. We aim to further develop this
research in a one-day conference at Tate Britain (November 28 2008).
Key to the interdisciplinary methodology that underpins the project
is the development of an understanding of curation and writing as
a form of practice as well as developing a more comprehensive sense
of practice as research. The project team have successfully collaborated
across the organization, strategy and implementation of this work
where methodologies in research as well as approaches to the project’s
production were discussed regularly. The central development in
this interdisciplinary practice is to emphasize the relevance of
the process to the research questions. To that end, the research
questions focus on an analysis and production of new spaces and
experiences of and for art and demand techniques that move fluidly
between looking, speaking, listening, making, writing and discussion.