Through this performative lecture, Paul O’Neill reflected upon his curatorial practice, collective exhibition-making and the public as a constructed ready-made. Taking his recent multi-year exhibition project of We are the Center for Curatorial Studies, Hessel Museum, 2016-18 as its starting point, this lecture reflected upon curatorial studies and extends a conception of the curatorial to account for multiple sites of contact, assemblages and gathering of diverse bodies and subjects as well as their discursive connections. In doing so, it opened up the concept of the formation of the ‘exhibition’ itself as a potential mode of research action in its own process of becoming.

O’Neill further explored how different points of contact are made possible when exhibiting becomes a form of escape for the artwork as much as for the viewer. Here, O’Neill identifies escape as a key concept for the curatorial which defines itself as an act of release – from something, somewhere, someone – accompanied by the wish to be transformed. Escape implicates language itself as being complicit with our need to be able to, at least, imagine ourselves elsewhere. How can a language of exhibitions, therefore enable us to think attentively about escape as a curatorial form?

Dr. Paul O’Neill is a curator, artist, writer and educator based in New York. He is Director of the Graduate Program at the Center for Curatorial Studies (CCS), Bard College in New York. Paul has co-curated more than sixty curatorial projects across the world including: We are the (Epi)center, P! Gallery, New York, 2016; How Institutions Think, A Symposium at LUMA Foundation, Arles, (2016);Open Fold, Series of public art projects, Lockleaze, Bristol (2014-17); The 4th Moscow Curatorial Summer School, (2015); The Curatorial Timeshare, Enclave, London (2013-14); Our Day Will Come, with Latitudes 53, Edmonton (2014-15); Last Day, Cartel, London (2014); Our Day Will Come, Part of Iteration: Again, Hobart, Tasmania (2011); We are Grammar, Pratt Institute, Manhattan Gallery, New York (2011); Coalesce: happenstance, SMART, Amsterdam (2009); Making Do, The Lab, Dublin (2007); General Idea: Selected Retrospective, Project Art Center, Dublin (2006); Tonight, Studio Voltaire, London, (2004); Are We There Yet? Glassbox, Paris (2000) and Passports, Zacheta Gallery of Contemporary Art, Warsaw (1998).

The Atelier IN at the Department of Intermedia focuses on the overlaps of different media and emphasizes creative approaches while specifically focusing on socially engaged politically sensitive conceptual art practices. An essential feature of the studio is its openness to a wide range of media and experiments in the field of contemporary art.

Since 2011, the educational program OPEN STUDIO has been part of the study at Atelier IN. Every month throughout the academic year the program brings established and renowned artists and theorists as short-term tutors for the students of the studio, and also for other students of the Department of Intermedia and the Academy.

The Open Studio has become a platform for practical and theoretical considerations reflecting on the historical, social and intellectual assumptions of visual art production.

The word “open” in the title suggests openness to new stimuli, opinions, reflections, criticism, communication and ultimately the formation of openness, which is achieved through inviting significant figures of the international art-scene into the studio and academic environment.

Here you can express yourself. (*required)