Aarhus University Seal

Nora Sternfeld: The Para-Museum and the Spectres of Infrastructure

Aesthetic Seminar are organized by Anika Marschall (Post.Doc, Dramaturgy), Peter M. Boenisch (Professor, Dramaturgy) and Karen-Margrethe Simonsen (Associate Professor, Comparative Literature) for the School of Communication and Culture, Aarhus University.

Info about event


Thursday 30 September 2021,  at 14:15 - 16:00


School of Communication and Culture, Aarhus University, Langelandsgade 139, Building 1584, Room 116, 8000 Aarhus C

Nora Sternfeld: The Para-Museum and the Spectres of Infrastructure

Registration required if you want to have potential updates on the seminar sent to you.
Please register here: https://events.au.dk/norasternfeld/signup     
But you are also Welcome to turn up at the door.

A stylish glass box encasing archival materials of the Art Workers’ Coalition and its actions at MoMA in 1969 presents the struggle for the rights of artists and political and social justice matters in a display case in the MoMA in New York’s new presentation of its collection. The material is carefully presented. But how do we read the thirteen demands on the Museum, including free admission, a section of the Museum devoted to showing work by black artists, and the Museum’s convening of a public hearing on the topic of 'The Museum’s Relationship to Artists and Society‘? The case protects what it displays, but it also draws our attention to its value. What are political demands doing in the display case of a museum of modern art – furthermore, demands addressed to the museum itself? In my lecture, I would like to examine these concrete questions, together with more far-reaching and general questions: What does the relationship of institutions to struggles against institutions mean from the perspective of institutions? If we understand the task of a museum as a critical faithfulness to the material, then how would institutions to be faithful to the materials? Would this really be about protecting the piece of paper on which the thirteen demands had been typed? Or is it perhaps, after all, more about what the sheet is about? Wouldn’t an institutionalization that wishes to be faithful to the material have to be faithful to the demands, that is, implement them? And how can something of the conflict be preserved and rendered capable of reactivation and not just neutralized and immobilized?

Read Aesthetic Seminar Program

See Aesthetic Seminar Poster