The first edition of Shanghai Curators Lab (SCL) officially launched at Shanghai Academy of Fine Arts (SAFA) 9:30 a.m. on November 5th. As the lead professors, Carolyn Christov-Bakargiev, the Director of the Castello di Rivoli Museum of Contemporary Art, Yongwoo Lee, the professor of SAFA at Shanghai University, and Wang Dawei, the Executive Dean of SAFA have attended onsite. With 22 SCL curators, they were gathering together to witness the opening ceremony of SCL.
Shanghai Curators Lab (SCL) is an intensive and challenging residence program for young curators hosted by SAFA, organized by Shanghai International Art City (SIAC) Research Institute, and in collaboration with Shanghai Biennale (hosted by Power Station of Art). The SCL aims to be an open forum for experimental, critical and discursive discussion on the ecology of curatorial practices and intercultural platforms in the period of radical transformation of the social framework.
Driven by SAFA and BAOWU Group, Shanghai International Art City (SIAC) research institute serves for the construction of 2035 Shanghai city sub-center under the background of the overall transformation of Shanghai Wusong industrial zone. Wang Dawei, the Executive Dean of SAFA gave the opening speech to introduce SCL, hoping it could take advantages of the early stage of SIAC to provide younger talents a space of boundless imagination, as well as a platform and an experimental field to demonstrate intelligence and to realize their ideas. This first edition of SCL will continuously develop and expand for the future of Shanghai and all the curators will bring endless vitality. The lead professor Carolyn Christov-Bakargiev will hold four different lectures and four discussions with curators. She emphasized the importance of art and pointed out that the definition of art is vague, but curators have the knowledge and appreciation to distinguish the qualities of artworks. Here, “Lab” actually offers a global platform to exchange ideas and brainstorming, and she hopes to learn more from these young curators. At the same time, she announced an exciting news that she was recently awarded the Audrey Irmas Award for Curatorial Excellence, 2019, issued by the Center for Curatorial Studies at Bard College. This award is regarded as the “Pritzker Architecture Prize” in curatorial field, which is designed to reward curatorial innovation and achievement. The lead professor, Yongwoo Lee gave a warm welcome to all. The 22 SCL curators have individually presented themselves, with infinite expectations for this project.
During a variety of lectures, studio visits, biennial experiment, art fairs and cultural investigations, curators with multicultural backgrounds will create unlimited curatorial sparks. Looking forward to their growths and the opening of the group curating exhibition and event from the first edition of SCL.
Since the open call for applications, Shanghai Curators Lab has attracted 168 candidates from over 28 countries (around 50 regions), including the United States, UK, Italy, Germany, France, Russia, Canada, Australia, China, etc. Most of the candidates are in art related industries, including gallery and museum curators, independent artists and art academy students. Through the comprehensive inspection and evaluation by lead professors and the representative from the collaborative partner, 22 candidates with an average age of 28 from more than 10 countries including China, UK, Germany, France, Australia, etc. were selected as the participating curators for the 1st SCL.
The name list of SCL curators is as below (in alphabetical order):Olivia Aherne (UK); Paulina Ascencio (Mexico); Celina Basra (Germany); Canan Batur (Turkey); Anais Castro (Portugal); Jiaying Chen (China); Giulia Colletti (Italy); Kate Davis (Australia); Cecilia Giurgevich (Italy); Thomas Laval (France); Rosanna Lee (UK); Margarita Leonenko (Belarus); Luyao Li (China); Yasemin Keskintepe (Germany); John Kenneth Paranada (Philippines); Thomas Patier (France); Ana Salazar (Portugal); Tiange Yang (China); Wilson Yeung Chun-wai (Hong Kong, China); Seda Yildiz (Turkey); Viola Yip (Hong Kong, China); Rafi Zarmina (Canada).
Apart from the lead professors Carolyn Christov-Bakargiev, the Director of the Castello di Rivoli Museum of Contemporary Art, and Yongwoo Lee, professor of SAFA at Shanghai University, other 27 well-known guest lecturers from the art circle were invited to this project. They have provided a good opportunity for curators to communicate with experts from various interdisciplinary fields. The SCL has designed 9 on-site visits and communications, including: The 12th Shanghai Biennale; The 5th West Bund Art& Design; Artist Liu Jianhua’s Studio; ShanghART Gallery (Taopu Space); Zhujiajiao Town; Artist Ding Yi’s Studio; Qiao Space and Tank Shanghai; Wuzhen and Shanghai International Art City (formerly BAOWU Group). Curators will explore the enormous potential of curatorial expansion within different lectures and field trips.
The list of lecturers is as follows (in no particular order): Carolyn Christov-Bakargiev, Director of the Castello di Rivoli Museum of Contemporary Art; Yongwoo Lee, Professor at Shanghai Academy of Fine Arts (SAFA) and artistic director of SIAC (Shanghai International Art City) Research Institute; Li Naihan, Architects and artist; Cuauhtémoc Medina, Chief curator of 12th Shanghai Biennale Shi Hantao, General coordination of the project of the 2018 12th Shanghai Biennale; Liu Jianhua, Artist; Hans Ulrich Obrist, Artistic Director of the Serpentine Galleries London; Carol Yinghua Lu, Director of Beijing Inside-out Art Museum Aric Chan, Curator-at-Large for M+; Sunjung Kim, President of Gwangju Biennale Foundation; Yu Ding, Dean of the School of Arts Administration and Education; Zhang Haimeng, The head of McKinsy’s Asia Pacific organization; Gong Yan, Director of Power Station of Art; Larys Frogier, Director of the Rockbund Art Museum in Shanghai Wiyu Wahono, Art art collectors in Jakarta, Indonesia; Karen Smith, Director of OCAT Xi’an; Li Xiangning, Deputy Dean of CAUPTJU (College of Architecture and Urban Planning, Tongji University); Biljana Ciric, Independent curator; Ding Yi, Artist; Wang Dawei, Executive Dean of SAFA; Gao Shiming, Vice President of China Academy of Art; Katie de Tilly, Founding member and President Emeritus of the Hong Kong Art Gallery Association; Claire Hsu; Co-founder and Executive Director of Asia Art Archive; Akira Tatehata, President of Tama Art University. Tokyo; Director of Yayoi Jusama Museum, Tokyo; Danny YUNG, Co-Artistic Director of Zuni Icosahedron.
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