Transmitting the Intangible: Indigenous Perspectives on Sustaining Memory and Contemporary Culture

Posted on Wed, 04/03/2024 - 16:52
Britta Marakatt-Labba,  A Part of History, 2020. Photo: Børre Høstland / The National Museum of Art, Architecture and Design. ©Britta Marakatt-Labba / BONO.


Nordic Black Theater (Oslo, Norway) and Online

Date and time


* A two-day hybrid event, blending both online and offline components, featuring presentations, workshops, and panel discussions.
* The symposium programs will be anounced in late April.

Art and other cultural manifestations produced today increasingly expose the limits of prevailing approaches to conservation, archiving and collections management rooted in European, settler colonialist ontologies and epistemologies. These tend to privilege objects that can be physically or digitally collected, often overlooking networks of human and more-than-human relations and other cultural manifestations and forms of knowledge that evade capture and domination by Western museological apparatuses of acquisition and archiving. In conjunction with the ten-year mark of Future Library (Katie Peterson) this virtual and in-person symposium will explore traditions of safeguarding and care, cultural preservation, and knowledge transmission outside of and in resistance to Eurocentric frameworks, centering the voices and perspectives of those working and living in global, colonial and postcolonial contexts and cultural geographies.

This symposium will bring together Sámi, Māori, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander, First Nations, Mixe, and other Indigenous and non-Western artists, archivists, conservators, curators, library and museum professionals, thinkers, and creative practitioners working both in and outside of academia around the themes of:

- Transmitting and activating living heritage and the intangible and ephemeral aspects of art and cultural heritage
- Ecological stewardship, long-termism, and intergenerational justice
- Loss, loss compensation, care, and repair
- The role and generative capacity of ritual, ceremony, and storytelling
- The ways in which Indigenous knowledge and cultures are incommensurable with non-Indigenous, settler colonial logics and methods of musealization, conservation and archiving

* Confirmed Speakers and Panelists:
Yásnaya Elena Aguilar Gil, Jo-Ann Archibald, Shona Coyne, Coby Edgar, Liisa-Rávná Finborg, Gunvor Guttorm, Juanita Kelly-Mundine, Jérémie McGowan, Anne May Olli, Joel Taylor, Nina Tonga, Marita Isobel Solberg, Elin Már Øyen Vister

* Organizers and Program Committee:
Brian Castriota, National Galleries Scotland / University College London
Jina Chang, The National Museum of Art, Architecture, and Design (Nasjonalmuseet)
Rebecca Gordon, Independent researcher
Ayesha Fuentes, University of Cambridge
Maren Haugfos, Deichman Library
Anne Beate Hovind, Future Library Trust
Anne May Olli, RiddoDuottarMuseat
Anja Sandtrø, The National Museum of Art, Architecture, and Design (Nasjonalmuseet)
Asti Sherring, National Museum of Australia / Canberra University

* Transmitting the Intangible symposium is organized by Nasjonalmuseet, RiddoDuottarMuseat, and Future Library Trust.

* Participation is free of charge, but registration is required.
* To register:


The National Museum of Art, Architecture, and Design