Doris Lessing in 1962. Photograph: Stuart Heydinger for the Observer


Monday, November 6, 2017
7:00 PM 8:30 PM
Rådhusgata 19, 2 Floor Oslo

A brief overview of six exhibitions that comprise a long-term curatorial research project, Children of Violence. The project as a whole presents artwork that renders visible contemporary forms of social violence: racism, homophobia, toxic masculinity and misogyny, transphobia, xenophobia and fascist nationalism. Case studies helped to draw out the overarching ethical questions this kind of work raises for the curator.

The Children of Violence is also a series of five semi-autobiographical novels by post-colonial British novelist and Nobel Prize laureate Doris Lessing. The series of books roughly sketches a woman’s coming of age in colonial Africa in the mid-20th Century and her painstakingly slow feminist awakening. I borrowed the series title for her project as an admission of my debt to Lessing’s feminism, which is feminism born of the acknowledgement of its complicity with whiteness in a colonial context.

This event was part of Curating the social: Meet me at the empty centre, a residency examining the curator’s role in facilitating social practice in contemporary art, foregrounding the ethical questions of their involvement. It was developed by PRAKSIS in partnership with Norsk Kuratorforening (The Norwegian Association of Curators).

Video documentation of the talk available here.