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‘EMEE: Young Scenographers Contest’: Changing the Perspective for European Museum Objects (28 November | University of Augsburg, Germany)

The Young Scenographers Contest is an international, trans-disciplinary design competition promoted within the Research Project EuroVision: Museums Exhibiting Europe (EMEE), European museum development project for national and regional museums, funded by the Culture Programme of the European Union in November 2012 and aimed at exploring interdisciplinary approaches for museums to re-interpret their objects in a broader context of European and  transnational history.

The Young Scenographers Contest is dedicated to the development of the theme “One Object – Many Visions – EuroVisions”. Its goal is the definition of new transcultural approaches to present regional objects in a European dimension via contemporary, content consistent exhibition design and new formats of presentation. Further information can be downloaded at: » Read more

Call for Papers -”Museum and Society” Journal (Department of Museum Studies, University of Leicester, UK)



Museum & Society invites those using sociological approaches to understanding museums or museum-related topics to submit papers to a special issue of the journal. The editors are keen to develop further the sociological scope of the journal, and wish to encourage work and publish articles covering a wide range of social science, humanities and practitioner research, under the following general headings:

1. Papers that report new theoretically-engaged, empirically-grounded research on museums. Amongst potential areas of special interest are:

  • Social elites, power and museums
  • Corporate sponsorship
  • The public sphere and the notions of publics
  • Museums, architecture, space and the built environment
  • Museums, identity and difference (e.g. class, age, gender and/or ethnicity)
  • Sociology of knowledge, art, science
  • Nature and Society
  • Political-economy of Museums
  • Museums and Religion
  • Museums and national cultural trends
  • Historical sociology of museums/collections
  • Government policy and museums
  • Out-door museums including zoos, national parks and gardens.

2. Papers that report on museum-related topics such as collecting, socio-cultural trends, cultural policy, social memory, time, heritage and tourism but where the main theme may not be museums. Such papers would seek to broaden the field of inquiry by drawing attention to the ways in which museums are implicated/imbricated by broader social forces.

3. Papers that focus on how museum research has been informed by key sociological concepts, e.g. social class, cultural capital, globalization, post-colonialism, post-modernism, or methods/approaches, such as ethnography, STS, Actor-Network Theory or Visual Methods. Such papers might, for example, show how museum research provides a critical extension of the concept(s) or approaches under review.

4. Papers that deal critically with social theorists whose ideas have influenced museum studies in recent years and which assess their contributions to the field.

5. Papers that explore the role of the sociological imagination within museums (exhibitions and displays) and the impact of sociology on museum practice.

Museum and Society is an interdisciplinary peer reviewed journal with a wide ranging interest in all issues associated with museums and other places of public culture concerned with collecting, exhibiting and display. It’s published on-line by the Department of Museum Studies of the University of Leicester.


Renata Alves Margarido

A Construction ‘On Identity’: Photographical Insights on the Evolution of the Self (10 September – 25 October | Sous Les Etoiles Gallery, New York )

©Photos by Lindsay Morris, Chris Rijksen, Laia Abril, Jen Davis and Olya Ivanova

Emerging from the diversity and singular needs and identities, an extensive variety of museum topics and ways to present its content, much of this complex phenomenon can be dealt by the understanding of the boundaries between socially and culturally constructed identities.

On this note, the Souls Les Etoiles Gallery in New York presents the featured work of five established and arising photographers on the construction of identity and its ongoing evolution, with a special emphasis on the play and staging of the self. » Read more

‘Western Union: Small Boats (The Leopard)’: Isaac Julien’s Journey of a Mediterranean “Clandestine” (11 September – 25 October | Urban Video Project, Everson, New York)

On the critical constellation called modernity, different representations of events are portrayed in several times and locations, that come together in the engagement of key concepts such as memory, locality, belonging, identity and history (as widely illustrated by, for example, Iain Chambers). The following suggestion meets this focus subject in the way that represents the reality of the “clandestine” ‘s journeys in the Mediterranean Sea.

In this regard, the Urban Video Project (a multi-media public art initiative of Light Work and Syracuse University) has opened the 2014-15 programming year on September 11th with the exhibition “Western Union: Small Boats (The Leopard)” by the world-renowned visual artist and filmmaker Isaac Julien. This exhibition marks the beginning of “Celestial Navigation: A Year into the Afro Future”, a year-long program of exhibitions and events at Urban Video Project, that will explore the work of major established, emerging artists and partner organizations through an afrofuturist lens as its point of departure.

On October 3rd, as part of the exhibition Isaac Julien discussed his philosophies on creating moving image art in his in-person talk, “Choreographing the Moving Image: Post Cinematic Desire and the Politics of Aesthetics”, in the Hosmer Auditorium of the Everson Museum of Art in Syracuse, New York. » Read more

“Bridge Over Troubled Waters? The Link Between European Historical Heritage and the Future of European Integration” (17 October 2014 | National Research Council, Rome)

Under the purpose of engaging on interesting discussions around the Social Sciences and Humanities, the Reflective Societies Unit of the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Research and Innovation, in cooperation with FLASH-IT and APRE, has organised the workshop “Bridge Over troubled Waters? The Link Between European Historical Heritage and the Future of European Integration”, which will take place in Rome on 17th October.

This workshop revolves around the problematic of the interconnectedness of the past, present and the future in the current European societies. It aimes at initiating a discussion about the potential meaning of “reflective societies” as societal challenge for current European societies in general and for setting the European research agenda under Horizon 2020 in particular. » Read more

Different Photographic and Thematic “Views on Africa” ( 20 September – 19 October | Kunsträume der Michael Horbach Stiftung, Köln)

©Photos by Thomas Dorn, Jan Grarup, Per-Anders Pettersson, Peter Bialobrzeski, Obie Oberholzer  and Christian Lutz.

On the occasion of the renown imaging fair Photokina and during the Cologne Photoszene Festival, the Cologne-based leading photo agency laif Agentur für Photos & Reportagen has exhibited the works of six photographers, offering different thematic and photographic perspectives on “Africa”. The exhibition is displayed in the Art Spaces of the Michael Horbach Foundation from 20th September to 19th October 2014.

The includes works by: Per-Anders Pettersson (“Rainbow Transit”), Jan Grarup (“Somalia”), Christian Lutz (“Tropical Gift”), Obie Oberholzer (Long Distance”), Peter Bialobrzeski (“Informal Arrangements”) and Thomas Dorn (“Houn-Noukoun – Gesichter und Rhythmen Afrikas”).

These multiple awarded photographers show their personal views on Africa from very different angles. They accompany people between gold rush fever and disillusion in the post-apartheid South Africa, they dive into the world of economy with its consequences for society and environment in Nigeria and in Somalia, that is torn by war and terrorism, into the dreamlike world of traveling – which promises freedom and happiness, they present an insight into the living and bedrooms in the slums of Kliptown in South Africa and last but not least, they lead us into the world of African rhythms which reflect the diversity of this gorgeous continent.

Renata Alves Margarido

Debating about a ‘Creative Europe? What Should we Expect from EU Cultural Policy?’ (27 June 2014 | Friedrich-Ebert Stiftung – Forum Berlin)


The technological mediations and dynamics created a heightened awareness of the existence and emergence of methods of identity construction in the digital age. Due to an increasing level of global competition and digitalization, the artists have now to face increasing challenges that get bigger and bigger every day, and these demand greater flexibility and mobility. Crossing borders always belonged to the work and life of artists, and this new configuration comes to complicate their trans-border activities.

Therefore claims of those engaging culture-creating professionals and the balancing act between national and international support programmes leads to difficulties in work and private life. The general trends toward liberalization and the growing dominance of economic paradigms has not failed to affect Europe’s cultural world. Many artists and political actors have come to believe that the freedom and independence of art and culture are in jeopardy (an example for this phenomenon is the intensively disputed topic of the North American Free Trade Agreement).

These topics were widely discussed during the international conference “Creative Europe? What Should we Expect from EU Cultural Policy”, which focused on the requirements for a European Cultural Policy, through the dialogue with culture creating people from different countries and representatives from politics, economy and science. The event was held on June 27th at the Friedrich-Ebert Stiftung – Forum Berlin. » Read more

Revealing “Immigrant Songs”: The Other Face of Immigration (3-19 October | Rome, MAXXI National Museum of XXI Century Arts | Galleries Claudia Gian Ferrari and Carlo Scarpa)

Photos by ©Angelica Mesiti & Malik Nejmi

Until October 14th, the National Museum of XXI Century Arts in Rome opens its galleries to the performed artwork of the artists Angelica Mesiti and Malik Nejmi, aimed at uncovering an urgent and challenging issue of migration through a specific cultural outlook – the musical dimension. These are two remarkable works manifesting the immigrant’s claim to memory, imagination, beauty and joy entitled: “Citizens Band” by Angelica Mesiti and 4160 by Malik Nejmi.

The exhibition “Immigrant Songs” will be presented in the galleries Claudia Gian Ferrari and Carlo Scarpa. The artwork intends to reveal the other face of the immigrants rather than the clichéd sufferance - “Their artistic soul, their desire and right to poetry, their happiness in engaging with a new civic, transnational and cosmopolitan life.”

Brief but pivotal, the show will be a prelude to Open Museum Open City, the challenging project on the culture of sound that aims to redefine the role of the institution and community, embracing the most crucial issues of contemporary society.

For more information check the : Free Mini Guide – “Immigrant Songs”

 Renata Alves Margarido

Unfolding the MeLa Critical Archive (22-23 November 2014 | Venice, Architecture Biennale 2014 | Padiglione Centrale, SalaF)

MeLa is pleased to invite you to a two-day event dedicated to the launch of the MeLa Critical Archive, promoted in the framework of the final week of the Architecture Biennale 2014.

The MeLa Critical Archive is a digital platform aimed at cohering, conveying and sharing the interdisciplinary investigations produced within the four year long Research Project.

The contents, the architecture and the functioning of the MeLa Critical Archive will be presented through an interactive exhibition, that will open in the Biennale’s Padiglione Centrale (Sala F). The exhibition will open on Saturday 22nd November at 12.30 pm, and will close on Sunday 23rd November at 3pm.

The scholars involved within the MeLa Project will be available to present and discuss the research outcomes on Saturday 22nd from 4 to 6 pm, and on Sunday from 11 am to 1 pm.  With the participation of: Luca Basso Peressut POLIMI, Gennaro Postiglione POLIMI, Francesca Lanz POLIMI, Elena Montanari POLIMI, Walsh Victoria RCA, Perla Innocenti GU, Muñoz Maite MACBA, Lupo Eleonora POLIMI, Whitehead Chris UNEW, Galangau-Quérat Fabienne MNHN, Bak Jacob CIID, Descure Catherine CIID.

* To receive further information or to reserve an interview with the MeLa Partners, please contact mail(at)

‘The (Post)colonial Visions’ Project: Building a Shared Archive of Public and Private Memories of Italian Colonialism

The Routes Agency is promoting the (Post) colonial Visions project, aimed at building a shared archive of Italian colonialism memories and of the intercultural present. It will contain materials preserved in the homes of many Italians that witness the long and significant colonial phase of which Italy was a protagonist. Being able to read again even a single picture sent from the front, a letter, the words of an official document or the representation of colonized peoples made by advertising or in popular magazines, will help to reconstruct the emergence of many visual stereotypes that still dominate our culture. Those materials will be collected via a public call, beginning from Rome and Lazio and then continuing with the rest of Italy. All the materials will be digitalized and then returned to their owners, in order not to deprive the donors of their personal memories.

The (Post) colonial Visions archive will be an open platform and an active social and cultural apparatus or “dispositif”. Artists, scholars, researchers, performers, musicians and writers will be invited to work on the materials in the archive, producing ad hoc artworks or events with them. All the productions made from the archive’s materials will be published in a specific section of the archive’s website and also exhibited and/or performed publicly in specifically organized events.

The initial step will be an unconventional conference that will take place on the 27th and on the 28th of November at the Casa della Memoria e della Storia in Rome, Presente Imperfetto. Eredità coloniali e immaginari razziali contemporanei (Present Imperfect. Colonial heritage and contemporary racial visions).

The need to bring out the connections between the current stereotypes towards the “other” and our colonial past, can only begin from a re-appropriation “from below” of the remaining public and private memories of that time: that’s why a crowdfunding campaign was launched to sustain the project. You can find further details to participate to the campaign at:

(Post) colonial visions will be realized in collaboration with: IRSIFAR – Istitutoromano per la storia d’Italia dal fascismo alla Resistenza; AMM – Archivio Memorie Migranti; Centre of Postcolonial and Gender Studies of the University “L’Orientale”of Naples; Colonial Memories Documentation Centre di Modena.