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Publications - articulate: February - April, 2012

2012 Curatorial Season
24 Feb-21 Apr / Gallery Three

Launching Thursday 23 February 5 pm.
Season Curators: Roman Mitch, Nicole Lim, Narrow Gauge, Oh.No.Sumo, Sonya Lacey & Vera Mey, Amelia Harris and Alterations.

From the artist’s perspective, curators are like hairdressers. The best ones make you look good, the worst ones ask how they should cut your hair. - Meg Cranston (2012)

You may be aware that ST PAUL St Gallery programmes quite far in advance, generally a year ahead, if not more. When I first started working here one of the projects I was given to work on was the next annual ST PAUL St Gallery Three Season. Every year we have a ‘Season’ that is a suite of short shows all interrogating a particular medium, concept or type of practice. In 2012 the Season’s focus is curatorial practice.

In developing the current Season I noticed the proliferation of texts on curating and exhibitions or models of working which unpack what curating means. After a blissful month in South Korea last year learning and living curating, it felt like an excellent prompt to reflect on this discipline. I can't tell if it's necessarily a curatorial turn or just my own research interests in what this practice is. We, at ST PAUL St are conscious of our position as a university gallery and want to complement the existing conversation occurring within postgraduate courses on curation and cultural production, recognising how they influence attitudes and practices.

I’m looking at this Season as research into a practice which is largely immaterial and invisible, a practice which comes under fire when too visible, a practice which is hard to describe to my mum when she asks what exactly it is I do. In providing a platform for various emerging practices and important trends in the Auckland region I’ve tried to present newer voices as well as ideas that stretch what is considered curating and what curating can be.

Different practices and approaches in the 2012 Curatorial Season include: curating as a physical structure (architectural collective Oh.No.Sumo); curator/artist (Roman Mitch); curating as a strategy for creating visibility (Nicole Lim of Fresh Gallery Otara); design engaged curating and curator as editor (Narrow Gauge and collaborators); curating as a collective agency (Alterations); curating as a metaphor for difference (Amelia Harris); and interdisciplinary curating (Sonya Lacey and Vera Mey).

2012 Curatorial Symposium, 29 & 30 March

Speakers: Ute Meta Bauer, Kate Rhodes, Wiebke Gronemeyer, Heather Galbraith, Caterina Riva, Ema Tavola, Sophia Al-Maria, Charlotte Huddleston, Layla Tweedie-Cullen, Anthony Byrt and more

We are very excited to be producing the 2012 Curatorial Symposium alongside Artspace and the Master of Arts Management programme here at AUT University as part of the Curatorial Season. For us it’s an exciting opportunity to profile a range of different voices investigating the various facets of curating. It’s also a time to reflect, reconnect with colleagues and consider our priorities for the near future. One of these is a commitment to presenting design, so we are excited to host Kate Rhodes, curator from the RMIT Design Hub as well as s/f Director Layla Tweedie-Cullen.

Lately, I’ve been obsessed with reading reviews of exhibitions, which can be motivating but also incredibly daunting. I’m particularly fond of this review of Massimiliano Gioni’s 8th Gwangju Biennale. I find myself reading it again and again. I appreciate how it privileges the tone of the exhibition and highlights some of Gioni’s risks and successes in particular groupings or juxtapositions of work.

You can find more information about the Symposium here. Details about speakers and the programme will be added as plans unfold. We’re going to try and be playful with the Symposium format without compromising on this as a platform for information and critically rigorous discussion. We hope you can join us and be part of this event. Please register your interest by emailing This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Vera Mey


Last Updated on Thursday, 16 February 2012 16:14

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