Mary Anne Staniszewski will respond to the questions posed for the CCS Bard’s “The Visitor Talks” series Pre-ambulation and Retrospection by first addressing the recent adoption of curating within a broad range of cultural, media, disciplinary, and political contexts, and the expansion of research as a synonym for art and curatorial practices. She will link these developments to curation within the arts and an investigation of what she has called “the power of display,” which is intended to serve as a method for institutional critique. Staniszewski will then re-evaluate and update her research on the Museum of Modern Art in dialogue with her past and present projects, such as those dealing with the New York City cultural center, Exit Art (1982-2012), and the book she is completing, which is a contemporary-historical portrait of the United States that examines issues of slavery and race.
Mary Anne Staniszewski investigates culture and art in relation to political and social perspectives. Her books include: Believing Is Seeing: Creating the Culture of Art (Penguin USA, 1995; Korean translation: Hyunsil Cultural Studies, Hyun Sil Moon Hwayonju, 2000 and 2007) and The Power of Display: A History of Exhibition Installations at the Museum of Modern Art (MIT Press, 1998; Korean translation, designLocus, 2007).
Staniszewski has overseen a number of publications and projects related to the New York City cultural center, Exit Art, which closed in June 2012. She has co-edited with Lauren Rosati the exhibition catalogue, Alternative Histories: New York Art Spaces, 1960-2010 (Exit Art and MIT Press, 2012) and conceived the symposium, Contemporary Slavery (June, 11, 2011), which was organized in collaboration with Exit Art’s staff and produced in conjunction with Exit Art’s 2011 Contemporary Slavery exhibition. Staniszewski was the director of Exit Art’s Curatorial Incubator and was executive editor of the curatorial program’s catalogue, Signs of Change: Social Movement Cultures 1960s to Now, editors/curators, Dara Greenwald and Josh MacPhee (Exit Art and AK Press, 2010). She is overseeing the publication of a history of Exit Art in collaboration with Exit Art’s founding co-director, Papo Colo, Unfinished Memories: 30 Years of Exit Art to be published by Stiedl.
Staniszewski is completing a contemporary-historical portrait of the United States, which examines issues of slavery and race. She has Ph.D. in Art History from the Graduate School and University Center, City University of New York, and is an associate professor at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, New York.
This talk is given as part of the lecture series The Visitor Talks : Pre-ambulation and Retrospection.