Remaking the Museum

Activity: Participating in or organising an event Organisation and participation in conference


In this time of entangled social and environmental crisis, the need to not only reimagine but remake the museum has acquired new urgency. Bring together leading scholars and practitioners from across the environmental humanities and beyond, this two-day conference will investigate the opportunities, challenges, and limits of the museum as a catalyst for social change in the Anthropocene. From the museum’s early modern origins to the development of today’s highly heritage saturated public culture, the capacity of museums and their objects to perform particular relationships between nature, culture, and history has always been important—inviting critique from a variety of political and theoretical vantage points. The emergence of the Anthropocene as both a contested concept and concrete reality adds new layers of complexity and intensity to this story.

What modes of collecting, classifying, conserving, and curating are called for amidst this moment of unfolding change? How to actively reshape our relations with contemporary ecologies of loss, profusion, and transformation in a way that is both more affirmative and more just? What alternative practices of curation and care flourish in the margins of official heritage projects? How can we differently actualize what Tony Bennett long ago called “the exhibitionary complex” in light of contemporary issues? And finally: Given the museum’s problematic history, can it be salvaged as the vector of its own remediation? Working across a wide range of historical, geographical, and disciplinary contexts, scholars and practitioners will come together to consider these important questions. Our aim for the conference is not only to critique and deconstruct—important tasks in their own right—but also chart a path forward for the museum as a powerful force for world-making.
Period6 Dec 2017
Event typeConference
LocationHøjbjerg, Denmark