Academic year
2022/2023 Syllabus of previous years
Official course title
Course code
EM3A14 (AF:376424 AR:208924)
On campus classes
ECTS credits
Degree level
Master's Degree Programme (DM270)
Educational sector code
4th Term
Course year
Go to Moodle page
The course is part of the core educational activities for art-historical disciplines in the degree course "Economics and Management of Arts and Cultural Activities" (EGART). The main course objective is to provide students with a knowledge and understanding of the curatorship of contemporary art on the basis of case studies selected from influential art personalities and exhibitions from the 20th and 21st centuries. The course will also engage with theories related to contemporary curatorship including, but not limited to, post-colonialism, gender, audience, postinternet communication, new materialism and ecology.

The 12-credit course in Museology and Curatorship consists of two parts, each of 6 credits. The first part (Museology) is held by professor Angelo Maria Monaco in the third period. Students obtain 12 credits when passing both partial exams in whatsoever order. The final grade is given by the average of the two partial grades. Both parts must be passed within the same academic year, under penalty of forfeiture of the partial credits accrued.
1. Knowledge
Topics will be investigated from a theoretical perspective in order to better understand the main approaches to curatorship. On the basis of selected case studies, topics will be analyzed from a global perspective.

2. Communication skills
Students will acquire skills to communicate the main topics in a clear and appropriate way.

3. Critical skills
Students will learn to critically assess the historical evolution of exhibitions, to position them in their geographical and historical contexts, and to acknowledge their contributions to the evolution of exhibitions until the present day.

4. Results
The learning outcomes will be gradually assessed through regular and active participation in classes, to the proposed seminar activities and with a final written exam.
Basic knowledge of contemporary art history acquired through the fundamental teaching courses scheduled in the master's degree programme.
The course is aimed at investigating theoretical and pragmatic approaches to the curatorship of contemporary art. The main case studies will be provided by artists, curators and art professionals involved in the exhibition practice. For this purpose, talks and webinars with curators, artists and cross-disciplinary public intellectuals will also be planned.
The course will deal with theoretical concepts related to the "curatorial" and its applications in the contemporary art system. Starting with a brief introduction to curators (including Alfred J. Barr, Harald Szeemann), and exhibitions that offer an introduction to contemporary, global curatorial practice, we will also consider the approach of curators (including Hans-Ulrich Obrist ,Okwui Enwezor ,Carolyn Christov- Bakargiev) whose practice responds to and informs global art history and curatorial practice from post-colonial and feminist positions. Discussions will also draw on my own experiences and practice as a Japan-based curator working on cross-disciplinary work on the world stage and the challenges of globally-orientated curation. The course will also engage with the relationship between curatorial practice and our rapidly changing society: from topics such as post-internet art to the Anthropocene.
Alongside theoretical discussions, the course will use exhibition visits to further enrich the study of curatorial practice. Through visits to selected local contemporary exhibitions, we will engage in discussions and apply the theoretical concepts of the course. Visits to "the making of" exhibitions in the framework of the forthcoming Venice architecture Biennale 2023 are also planned.
The following texts aim to give an insight into the kind of material and central ideas students will be asked to engage with as part of this course. Excerpts and reading will be set from among the following texts, with additional supplementary references, to be announced at the beginning of the course. Selected past exhibitions will also be central to class discussion.

Hans-Ulrich Obrist, A Brief History of Curating, JRP Ringier, Zürich 2008 (or other edition)

Terry Smith, Talking Contemporary Curating, Independent Curators International, New York 2015.

Boris Groys, Curating in the Post-Internet Age, Berlin, e-flux journal Issue 94, 2018.

Yuko Hasegawa “Reaching Furtively Towards the Future: A Biennial for a Time of Transition” PASS, Journal of the International Biennial Association 2021

Suggested, non-mandatory texts

Nicolas Bourriaud, Relational Aesthetics, Dijon, Les Presse Du Reel, 1998.

Bruno Latour, Peter Weiermair, Critical Zones: The Science and Politics of Landing on Earth, Cambridge, MIT Press, 2020.

Sarat Maharaj, Farewell to Post-colonialism: Querying the Guwangzhou Triennial 2008, Dublin, Printed Project Issue 11, 2009.
The final grade comes from the sum of three components:

1. Active and regular participation in the classes.

2. The evaluation of a written exam.

3. An original project (outcome of seminar activity or individual work).

The use of books, notes, and electronic media is not allowed during the test.
Classes will range from discussions and presentations of core topics and texts to webinars and talks with selected guests and field trips to selected exhibitions.
There will also be a seminar in which students will work in groups to create a virtual exhibition proposal on the theme of 'art and sustainability' .
The materials presented in class will be available on the Moodle e-learning platform together with additional sources.
Students with disabilities or those with special educational needs are kindly asked to contact the relevant offices by the start of the course.
This programme is provisional and there could still be changes in its contents.
Last update of the programme: 06/02/2023