Access 2 Contemporary Art Conservation (10th June, 2010)

Posted on Tue, 03/16/2010 - 11:33
International symposium Contemporary Art: Who Cares?, 2010
Parallel session
Access 2 Contemporary Art Conservation
Date, time
Thursday 10th June, 14:00-16:00
Juha van 't Zelfde & Michiel van Iersel
Non-fiction is an office for cultural, urban and technological innovation, founded by Michiel van Iersel and Juha van ‘t Zelfde in 2008, providing cutting-edge ideas and activities. Based in Amsterdam, it is a collaborative vehicle for making things public and bringing together public and private interests in the field of spatial and cultural strategies, new media and the arts.
Maartje Swinkels, owner of Akina Art Projects
  Click here to download session summary
During the successful Inside Installations exhibition in Kröller-Müller Museum in 2006-07, the visitor was given a unique ‘behind-the-scenes’ look into the working practice of the conservator of modern and contemporary art.  Visitors witnessed a conservator at work on an installation in the exhibition room. This approach is just one of the many ways to educate the public about the conservation of contemporary art.  Multi-media and internet technology are also often used by museums to create visitor tours or online learning courses. It would seem however that (whatever the chosen medium) issues on the conservation of contemporary art are not often dealt with. This is an interesting fact given that when such issues are made accessible, the public’s understanding and appreciation of the artwork increases. Participants of this session will learn about how organisations (in and outside of cultural heritage) are using new media and emerging technologies to engage with audiences. In addition, the guest speaker will discuss how their museum has attempted to educate the public on issues of conservation of contemporary art. The workshop part will then  focus on how new media strategies can be deployed in the domain of contemporary arts conservation.
Maartje Swinkels, owner of Akina Art Projects
Museums are increasingly aware that visitors not only want to look at art, but also want to participate in museum exhibitions and (conservation) projects. A simple way of allowing museum visitors participate is via surveys and interviews. These interviews can be held person-to-person, but also at the end of a digital museum tour. Another way to involve the public in art and conservation practices is through the Internet. How do relatively small museums use museum tours to educate, amuse and let their visitors participate? What did they learn from creating these tours? And what other initiatives are there in order to involve the public in art and in conservation issues?
Maartje Swinkels graduated from the Master study Arts, Culture and Media at Rijksuniversiteit Groningen. During an internship at the Netherlands Institute of Cultural Heritage she became interested in mobile museum tours and participatory design. More and more cultural institutions are interested in the publics’ opinion. This can be gained via questionnaires and interviews with museum visitors, but also through more personal ways like giving visitors the opportunity to create an exhibition. Akina Art Projects researches these participatory design initiatives and works with cultural institutions on participatory projects.