2020 Curatorial Intensive continues to bring the art community together

Catherine-Bell-and-Eden-Menta-at-FEM-aFFINITY-exhibition-opening-(Arts-Project-Australia-2019)-photo-by-Kate-LongleyNETS Victoria will once again collaborate with the Public Galleries Association of Victoria (PGAV) to present the 2020 Curatorial Intensive, continuing to reach curators across Victoria and beyond to respond to the themes which have shaped 2020.

This year’s program titled Curating Safe Practices, will feature a series of free one-hour webinars taking place from 10 November – 10 December 2020. The multi-faceted program provides a platform for Australian curators and arts workers to share their experiences and knowledge with one another through a live Q+A forum.

“2020 has proved to be a continuously challenging year; this year’s Curatorial Intensive gives us the opportunity to come together to share our learnings,” said Chair of NETS Victoria’s Artistic Program Advisory Committee, Adam Harding.

“We hope that all participants and presenters can reflect on the ways we’ve dealt with altering our practices and how we can continue to evolve with a view towards increased access and more respectful practices. The program has been a collaboration between the PGAV and NETS Victoria’s Artistic Program Advisory Committee, supported by the Victorian Government through Creative Victoria.”

Session one: Best practice approaches for working inclusively with artists with disability will explore considerations in working collaboratively with contemporary artists with and without disabilities, and the approaches organisations and curators should consider to meet best practice in this area. Chair Sim Luttin of Arts Project Australia; Dr Catherine Bell, Artist and Curator of FEM-aFFINITY; Morwenna Collett, Disability and Accessibility Consultant; and Artists Eden Menta and Jane Trengove, will draw upon different types of disability: intellectual, physical and mental health issues, and the different approaches to working inclusively and providing access for these groups across Australia. This webinar takes place on Tuesday 10 November: 2:30 – 3:30pm and will be Auslan interpreted.

Session two: Managing Curatorial Risk introduces a new resource developed by NETS Victoria and Museums and Galleries of NSW (MGNSW) aimed to assist with curatorial risk management. The session will reflect upon exhibitions’ intent to incite conversation, new ideas and debate, while asking the question – what happens when exhibitions contain content that could be perceived to be controversial, provocative or have the potential to offend certain members of the community, audience or stakeholder groups? This session investigates Conflict In My Outlook – a current exhibition curated by Anna Briers which navigated this type of curatorial risk and brings together Chair Adam Harding, Director of CCP and Chair of NETS Victoria’s Artistic Program Advisory Committee; Presenters Anna Briers, Curator, University of Queensland Art Museum; Artist Xanthe Dobbie; and Rachel Arndt, Gallery Programs and Touring Exhibitions Manager, MGNSW. This webinar takes place on Wednesday 18 November: 2:30 – 3:30pm and will be live captioned.

Session three: First Nations Cultural Safety brings together First Nations perspectives in a candid discussion aiming to shift curatorial approaches for the better. The session delves into important questions including, how do we as institutions ensure that First Nations cultural safety is embedded in our institutions? Join Chair Bec Cole, Director Creative Arts, Latrobe City Council and presenters, Clothilde Bullen, Senior Curator of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Collections and Exhibitions at the Museum of Contemporary Art Australia (MCA); and Belinda Briggs, Community Engagement – Indigenous, Shepparton Art Museum, for an important discussion on bringing First Nations art into the spotlight while ensuring safe spaces, considered approaches and accountability. This webinar takes place on Wednesday 2 December: 2:30 – 3:30pm and will be live captioned.

Session four: Online Engagement – Learnings, Pitfalls and Triumphs will reflect heavily on the challenges that 2020 presented and the need for galleries to use digital technologies to engage audiences in the absence of physical visitation. The session will consider how galleries rose to the challenge to adapt to this process, what has been successful, and if online engagement will continue to be a useful tool after the pandemic. Chair Danny Lacy, Artistic Director / Senior Curator, Mornington Peninsula Regional Gallery and presenters: Miriam Kelly, Curator, ACCA; Artists James Nguyen; and Camila Galaz; will come together and analyse the move to online tools and how the art community responded to new formats to keep artists, galleries and audiences connected and showcasing art. This webinar takes place on Tuesday 8 December: 2:30 – 3:30pm and will be live captioned.

Session five: Curatorial One-on-One sees participants paired up with another curator to discuss topics that have been explored in this year’s Curatorial Intensive, hosted by Esther Anatolitis, arts consultant, advocate and writer, bringing like-minded people together to reflect and learn from previous sessions to discuss the issues facing the arts and how we can all learn from each other’s experiences. Taking place on Thursday 10 December: 4:00 – 5:00pm.

NETS Victoria delivers extraordinary contemporary art, craft and design to regional Victoria and beyond. The organisation works closely with curators and galleries to develop ambitious and stimulating exhibitions that foster the exchange of ideas and promote new works by a diverse range of leading and emerging Australian artists. For more infomation, visit: www.netsvictoria.org.au for details.

Image: Catherine Bell and Eden Menta at FEM-aFFINITY exhibition opening (Arts Project Australia, 2019) – photo by Kate Longley