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Gestures and Acclamations: some assembly required Contextualising curating and exhibtion practices in Southeast Asia for Singapore, Indonesia and Hong Kong

Tan, Bridget Tracy (2014) Gestures and Acclamations: some assembly required Contextualising curating and exhibtion practices in Southeast Asia for Singapore, Indonesia and Hong Kong. PhD thesis, University of the Arts London.

Type of Research: Thesis
Creators: Tan, Bridget Tracy

In the last two decades, Southeast Asia has seen the rapid rise and increasing prominence of large scale art fairs as well as 'biennale' style exhibitions. Taking Southeast Asia as the context for studying curatorial practice based in but not exclusive to the region, my doctoral research has worked with the notion of the museum as a colonial remnant; the 'biennale' as an extension of that remnant; the art fair as an economic overhaul of the extended remnant.

Available critical literature is used to establish a reading of how curating as a practice is evolving in Southeast Asia. The geopolitical establishment of Southeast Asia lies on the threshold of Modernity, and is synonymous with the post-colonial conditions that helped to identify the art and culture of the region, as specifically characteristic and representative of the region.

There are two distinctive arenas in which 'curating' in Southeast Asia has occurred or can occur. The first takes place within institutions against the backdrop of the post colony, with the establishment of museums of the 19th century paradigm; museums as institutions which accumulate cultural artefacts and display these artefacts according to a taxonomy specific to forms of cultural interpretation and exchange. The second takes place outside of institutions, where Southeast Asian curators assume a role in a larger production of global discourse, global communities, global audiences.

In Southeast Asia, the presence of indigenous culture and civilisation is sometimes overlooked and disregarded in favour of a larger post-colonial discussion concerning artistic production of the new and modern nation state. This research touches on how acknowledging the weight of civilisation and the recent colonial past does not automatically address a combative resistance in post-colonial critiques; that our artistic products (and the curating of those products for international consumption) should not necessarily disinherit established knowledge of our regional culture in the process of creating new knowledge to paint a modern identity with which we feel convincingly addresses the international audience.

This research will highlight six specific case studies of three Southeast Asian countries at Venice Biennale, including the 'debut' pavilions, describing the art products as presented at these art exhibitions. From here, selected parameters are extrapolated with which to critically examine the curator and curatorial practices that support these art products at international art exhibitions.

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Your affiliations with UAL: Colleges > Chelsea College of Arts
Date: 2014
Date Deposited: 27 Feb 2023 11:14
Last Modified: 14 Feb 2024 16:41
Item ID: 19706
URI: https://ualresearchonline.arts.ac.uk/id/eprint/19706

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