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JOHN CABOT UNIVERSITY

COURSE CODE: "AH 271"
COURSE NAME: "Curating Museums and Galleries"
SEMESTER & YEAR: Spring 2019
SYLLABUS

INSTRUCTOR: Ilaria Gianni
EMAIL: [email protected]
HOURS: MW 11:30-12:45 PM
TOTAL NO. OF CONTACT HOURS: 45
CREDITS: 3
PREREQUISITES:
OFFICE HOURS:

COURSE DESCRIPTION:
The course is designed to introduce students to the history of museums and to curating practices. Classes will discuss the cultural position of the museum, the evolution of its function, the different forms of display, the historical developments of the act of collecting, the position of the visitor and the role of the curator. The primary purpose of the course is to provide students with a critical vocabulary for understanding how museums produce knowledge and structure the ways in which history, geography, cultural difference, and social hierarchies are mapped. Through a series of richly detailed case studies related to ancient and contemporary Rome museums, collections and institutions, classes will investigate the differences between the roles, the missions, the objectives, and the policies of conservation and exhibition-making in spaces, relating to modalities of thought. The course also intends to introduce the figure of the curator and its development from conservator and classifier to creative, critical protagonist of contemporary art culture. The course concludes with an overview of current debates around the contemporary need for museums, and large scale exhibition (such as Biennials and Triennials) and their perceived social functions
SUMMARY OF COURSE CONTENT:
During the first part of the course we will learn about some of the basic concepts of museums and develop a basic vocabulary on museum studies. We will face the difference between a museum understood as an institution and a gallery understood as a commercial activity. After that we will focus on the role and on the function of the curator, and on the definition of curatorial cultural practices.

In the second part of the course we will actively discuss several of Rome’s museums and galleries, surveying the different methods of displaying contemporary cultures, analysing the diverse curatorial decisions and discussing some of the practical issues museums and galleries face.

In the third segment we will analyze the current debates on curating that have risen in the age of international biennials and blockbuster show, discussing the way in which exhibitions are conceived and the subjects they aim to address.

Special lectures on Museums, Foundations and Collections based in Rome*:

Contemporary Art Museums:
- Galleria Nazionale 
- MACRO (Museum of Contemporary Art Rome)
- MAXXI (Museum of the XXI century)

Temporary Contemporary Exhibition Centers:
- Palazzo delle Esposizioni
- Musia
- Palazzo Merulana

Private Art Foundations:
- Nomas Foundation
- Giuliani Foundation
- Fondazione Volume!
- Fondazione Memmo
- Fondazione Pastificio Cerere

Private Galleries:
- 1/9 Gallery
- The Gallery Apart
- Monitor Gallery
- Lorcan O'Neill Gallery
- t293 Gallery
- Frutta Gallery
- Gavin Brown's Enterprise
- Gagosian
- Emanuel Layr

* lectures selected among the above-mentioned institutions. When possible we will visit the spaces.

Parallel to the theoretical aspects of curating and contemporary museum studies, students will also work on a curatorial active group project engaging with the Roman local art scene. During the first weeks of the course the class will choose the exhibition format they prefer developing (a show, a conference, a blog, a performance, a small festival, workshops...). The idea will be conceptually and materially structured during the semester and presented at the end of the course.
LEARNING OUTCOMES:
At the end of the course students should have acquired a knowledge of the history of museums, of international large scale exhibitions, current issues and trends in the field, and will be familiar with curatorial practices.  They will have a basic knowledge of the vocabulary used by museum professionals and a basic bibliography of the recent literature.  They will utilize critical thinking and writing skills as they will be required to closely examine, analyze, discuss and write about specific exhibitions and museums

Students will learn how to experience contemporary art museums, how to recognize the differences within the roles and functions of museums. Students will also become familiar with the different functions of a contemporary Kunsthalle (temporary exhibition centers), a commercial gallery, an international large scale exhibition (biennials and triennials).

Through an introduction of the different players of the contemporary art system, classes also aim at acquainting students with the role of the curator, the museum director, the collector, the art critic. Students will furthermore learn about the history of curating. The course will unveil the theoretical and practical aspects of curating. In general the course will highlight the relationships between cultural theory and art practice.
TEXTBOOK:
Book TitleAuthorPublisherISBN numberLibrary Call NumberComments
Contemporary Cultures of DisplayEmma BarkerYale University Press0300077831  
Thinking Contemporary CuratingTerry SmithIndependent Curators International (ICI)0916365867  
Ten Fundamental Questions of CuratingJens Hoffmann (Editor) Mousse Publishing8867490532  
The Curator's Handbook Adrian George Thames & Hudson0500239282  
REQUIRED RESERVED READING:
Book TitleAuthorPublisherISBN numberLibrary Call NumberComments
The Culture of Curating and the Curating of Culture(s)Paul O'NeillThe MIT Press0262017725  
A Brief History of CuratingHans Ulrich ObristJRP|Ringier390582955X  
Harald Szeemann: Individual MethodologyFlorence Derieux (edited by),JRP|Ringier3905829096  
Inside the White Cube: The Ideology of the Gallery SpaceBrian O'DohertyUniversity of California Press 0520220404  

RECOMMENDED RESERVED READING:
NONE
GRADING POLICY
-ASSESSMENT METHODS:
AssignmentGuidelinesWeight
Attendance and participation (participation in class discussions and gallery visits: questions asked, involvement in the visits)15%
Mid-term exams (1 review focusing on the museum vists)15%
Final show (Students will be ask to curate a show on thier own. The effort and participation in structuring the show will be graded.)30%
Interview with the artist( A complete conversation addressing the practice of one of the artists involved in the final show)20%
Final exam in class (3 questions on curating and museum studies)20%

-ASSESSMENT CRITERIA:
AWork of this quality directly addresses the question or problem raised and provides a coherent argument displaying an extensive knowledge of relevant information or content. This type of work demonstrates the ability to critically evaluate concepts and theory and has an element of novelty and originality. There is clear evidence of a significant amount of reading beyond that required for the cou
BThis is highly competent level of performance and directly addresses the question or problem raised.There is a demonstration of some ability to critically evaluatetheory and concepts and relate them to practice. Discussions reflect the student’s own arguments and are not simply a repetition of standard lecture andreference material. The work does not suffer from any major errors or omissions and provides evidence of reading beyond the required assignments.
CThis is an acceptable level of performance and provides answers that are clear but limited, reflecting the information offered in the lectures and reference readings.
DThis level of performances demonstrates that the student lacks a coherent grasp of the material.Important information is omitted and irrelevant points included.In effect, the student has barely done enough to persuade the instructor that s/he should not fail.
FThis work fails to show any knowledge or understanding of the issues raised in the question. Most of the material in the answer is irrelevant.

-ATTENDANCE REQUIREMENTS:
Class attendance and participation in field trips are highly recommended. Please refer to the university catalog for the attendance and absence policy. Please refer to the university catalog for the attendance and absence policy. Please refer to the university catalog for the attendance and absence policy.

ACADEMIC HONESTY As stated in the university catalog, any student who commits an act of academic dishonesty will receive a failing grade on the work in which the dishonesty occurred. In addition, acts of academic dishonesty, irrespective of the weight of the assignment, may result in the student receiving a failing grade in the course. Instances of academic dishonesty will be reported to the Dean of Academic Affairs. A student who is reported twice for academic dishonesty is subject to summary dismissal from the University. In such a case, the Academic Council will then make a recommendation to the President, who will make the final decision.

STUDENTS WITH LEARNING OR OTHER DISABILITIES John Cabot University does not discriminate on the basis of disability or handicap. Students with approved accommodations must inform their professors at the beginning of the term. Please see the website for the complete policy.
ACADEMIC HONESTY
As stated in the university catalog, any student who commits an act of academic dishonesty will receive a failing grade on the work in which the dishonesty occurred. In addition, acts of academic dishonesty, irrespective of the weight of the assignment, may result in the student receiving a failing grade in the course. Instances of academic dishonesty will be reported to the Dean of Academic Affairs. A student who is reported twice for academic dishonesty is subject to summary dismissal from the University. In such a case, the Academic Council will then make a recommendation to the President, who will make the final decision.
STUDENTS WITH LEARNING OR OTHER DISABILITIES
John Cabot University does not discriminate on the basis of disability or handicap. Students with approved accommodations must inform their professors at the beginning of the term. Please see the website for the complete policy.

SCHEDULE

Schedule * 

AH 271
Curating Museums and Galleries
Spring 2018
Prof. Ilaria Gianni
M/W 11.30 am - 12.45 pm


* Alterations and/or additions to the schedule may take place. Programs will be confirmed during the course.


Monday January 21

Introduction to the course
_____________________________________________________________________________________________

Wednesday January 23

Introduction to Museum studies
- Studioli /Kunstkammer / Wunderkammer / Galleries
- The Birth of the Public Democratic Museum
____________________________________________________________________________________________

Monday January 28


Introduction to Museum Studies
- Collection and Collecting

__________________________________________________________________________________________

Wednesday January 30

Introduction to Museum Studies
- ICOM

_____________________________________________________________________________________________

Monday February 4

Introduction to Museum Studies 
- The Changing Museum - Case Studies: The Museum of Modern Art / The Musée D'Orsay / The Natonal Gallery, London 

_____________________________________________________________________________________________

Wednesday February 6

Introduction to Exhibition History
Exhibitions of Contemporary Art: XX Century History

_____________________________________________________________________________________________

Monday February 11

Introduction to Exhibition History
Exhibitions of Contemporary Art: XX Century History

_____________________________________________________________________________________________

Wednesday February 13

Introduction to the Gallery System
Commercial Galleries: Functions and Aims

____________________________________________________________________________________________

Friday February 15 (Make-up day for Monday April 22)

Galleries in Rome
On site class - Visit to Frutta Gallery, Rome

TBC

_____________________________________________________________________________________________

 

Monday February 18

Exhibition Practicalities
Concept devlopment, display, communication plan, budget for an exhibition

_____________________________________________________________________________________________

Wednesday February 20

Galleries in Rome
On site class - Visit to Galleria Lorcan O'Neill, Rome

TBC

_______________________________________________________________________________________________


Monday February 25

Exhibition Practicalities
Concept devlopment, display, communication plan, budget for an exhibition

_________________________________________________________________________________________

Wednesday February 27

Exhibition Practicalities
Concept devlopment, display, communication plan, budget for an exhibition


_________________________________________________________________________________________

Monday March 4

Art Foundations in Rome 

Lecture by Adrienne Drake, Director and Curator at Fondazione Giuliani

TBC
____________________________________________________________________________________________

Wednesday March 6

Art Foundations in Rome 
On site class - Foundazione Volume with curator Silvano Manganaro

TBC

_____________________________________________________________________________________________

Friday March 8 (Make-up day for Wednesday May 1)

Exhibition project tutorials

_____________________________________________________________________________________________

 

Monday March 11

Spring Break
_____________________________________________________________________________________________

Wednesday March 13

Spring Break


_____________________________________________________________________________________________

Monday March 18

Artists in Rome 
Lecture by an artist discussed in class

TBC

_____________________________________________________________________________________________

Wednesday March 20

Artists in Rome 
Lecture by an artist discussed in class

TBC

_____________________________________________________________________________________________

Monday March 25

Exhibition project tutorias 

_____________________________________________________________________________________________

Wednesday March 27

Introduction to Curatorial Studies
- The Birth of the Curator: Seth Sieglaub and Harlad Szeemann

_____________________________________________________________________________________________

Monday April 1

 Introduction to Curatorial Studies
- The Birth of the Curator: Seth Sieglaub and Harlad Szeeman

____________________________________________________________________________________

Wednesday April 3 

Temporary Exhibition Centers in Rome 
On site class - Musia

_______________________________________________________________________________________

Monday April 8

Introduction to Curatorial Studies
- Curatorial discussions

____________________________________________________________________________________________

Wednesday April 10

Venice Biennale
Documenta
Manifesta
_____________________________________________________________________________________________

Monday April 15

Art Fairs:
Art Basel / Frieze / ARCO / Fiac / Artissima

___________________________________________________________________________________________

Wednesday April 17

Exhibition project Tutorials

_____________________________________________________________________________________________

Monday April 22 (Make-up day Friday February 15)

NO CLASS - Holiday

___________________________________________________________________________________________

Wednesday April 24

Auction Houses:
Sothbeys
Christies

_____________________________________________________________________________________________

Monday April 29

Online Platforms and journals

_____________________________________________________________________________________________

Wednesday May 1 (Make-up day Friday March 8)

NO CLASS - Holiday