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Defining curating

WHAT COULD/SHOULD CURATING DO?—WCSCD was initiated in 2018 in Belgrade as an educational platform focused around notions of the curatorial and is a registered civic association. WCSCD was established by Biljana Ciric and these two bodies are deeply entangled and define themselves as she/her. These two bodies are relational and hoping to be transformed by the relationships they are entangled with. Their mode of existence, visibility and opacity in the world is shaped by thinking and walking with an advisory group—which since 2020 has consisted of Matt Packer, Andrea Palasti and Ares Shporta—as an exercise in how to become more than yourself- pluralself (Rolando Vazquez). Defining these two entangled bodies as she/her, we are hoping to engage in larger conversations of deconstruction and of imagining institutions by decolonizing our expectations.

What do we mean when we say curating?

We understand curatorial practice as walking with. We mean walking not as a way of getting somewhere, but walking with, as sharing time and creating space for unevenness to co-exist. When writing about walking, Canadian geographer Juanita Sundberg separates this into two steps. The first step is positioning, which is locating my body-knowledge in relation to the existing paths I know and walk. Sundberg defines the second step as walking with.

 

“Walking with means ‘reciprocal respect for the autonomy and independence of organizations’ involved in the struggle; in other words, respect for the multiplicity of life worlds. Step two, then, involves learning to learn about multiplicity.”

What do we mean when we ask the question What Could/Should Curating Do?

We propose this question in order to engage with practices and encourage curating to stay dynamic and responsive in the world around me, anchored in caring with.

Situating

We are situated in Belgrade, Serbia, where the work of cultural workers is undervalued. A very big part of myself is also situated in the places where our collaborators struggle working under similar conditions. We are also with many bodies that experience and fight against the extraction of natural resources and exploitation of human and more than human worlds.

Our Vision

We dream and practice contemporary culture as a political movement that stand against that moves away from certain economically bounded locations creating the conditions for us on the margins to participate in discussions where our futures are negotiated and our pasts reflected on. I dream of an instituting model that is attentive to human and more than human worlds, asking myself who I am in relation to others.

Our Values

  • Education and new methodologies

  • Ambition and openness to failure as part of the learning process

  • Professional network of colleagues and peers who think together with me

  • Slow modes of working that allow for deeper entanglements

Our Priorities

  • Ways of doing based on a pedagogy of positionality

  • Education and methodologies I use in creating new kinds of human

  • Creating citations in art practices from the margins that contribute to the global

  • Ways of working together that are long-term and based on the equal sharing of resources

  • Creating conditions for equal participation within contexts that are economically uneven

  • Contributing to practising towards sustainable art institutions

WCSCD existing programs and inquiries 2018-2022

WCSCD’s main program focus is an educational program and long-term inquiries towards decolonizing modes of relationality within the arts.

WCSCD’s education program has been run on an annual basis every year since 2018. It is a three-month program for practitioners situated in Belgrade.

In 2020 I started the first curatorial inquiry of WCSCD in the form of a long-term research project: As you go…roads under your feet, towards the new future looking at the impact of BRI in Central Asia, Balkan, Ethiopia and China. The project is structured around partner cells: Zdenka Badovinac (Ljubljana), Robel Temesgen and Sinkneh Eshetu (Addis Ababa), Public Library Bor (Bor), Rockbund Art Museum (Shanghai), Times Museum (Guang Zhou), Artcom platform (Almaty) and WCSCD (Belgrade).

Our plans 2022-2025

My plan is to work with a group of colleagues to bring WCSCD into a new stage of positioning itself. In this phase WCSCD will consider itself in relation to merging the rural and the urban, through an open inquiry into what it means when an art institution becomes a custodian of the land. I am hoping to explore the role of art institutions within rural-urban, nature-culture relations and possible sustainable economies for both.

I hope that our entanglement will bring long lasting alliances, bringing like-minded practitioners together to work collectively on deconstructing our methodologies of working within the arts.

Thinking with.

Since 2020 I have been thinking with Matt Packer (director of Eva International), Andrea Palasti (artist and educator Novi Sad) and Ares Shporta (director of Lumbardhi Foundation) as part of an active advisory group. From 2023 we will continue without Ares as he is starting a new chapter in his life and we thank him for his insight and knowledge. From 2023 we will welcome to the advisory group Amelie Aranguren (head of artistic programming at INLAND’s Center for the Approach to the Rural (CAR) in Madrid and Inland member since 2010.)

Besides the Advisory Group we I have been accompanied in thinking and practising with Susie Quillinan and Madeliene Collie through Study Pattern.

Our Team

Founding Director 

Biljana Ciric 
what.could.curating.do@gmail.com

 

Coordinator 

Ana Dragic 
ana.wcscd@gmail.com

 

WCSCD previous team members: Sasa Tkacenko, Katarina Kostandinovic, Ana Anakijev, Aigierim Kapar.

Defining WCSCD
Situating
Our Vision
Our Values
Our Priorities
Programs & Inquiries
Plans 2022-2025
Thinking with.
Our Team
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