EVENINGS WITH WHW AKADEMIJA
29/06 AT 7 PM CET
Many works of art exhibited in museums over the last decade have fallen within certain dystopian parameters, which could be interpreted as a reactionary form of disaster entertainment, produced by cultural institutions.
In this talk, Pablo Martínez discusses the limits and unsustainability of the modern cultural paradigm and speculates about the possibilities of an eco-socialist museum. The debate is based on two fundamental questions: What sort of museum do we want in today’s world? And what sort of world do we want to build from within the museum? The first question invites us to build a museum that is conscious of its own material reality and ecological impact, so that its practices can be defined and modified accordingly. The second question highlights the power of art in forming subjectivities and constructing shared imaginaries that might “change life.”
If fear and hope, as the philosopher Ernst Bloch said, are affective structures that can be considered anticipatory, then Martínez contends that the cultural institution has to support the building of contexts for hope and inspire individuals to imagine a possible future world. Furthermore, in the current crisis—with a pandemic affecting a whole generation and our planet showing ever more signs of exhaustion—hope should be the first feeling we go to, instead of considering it the last thing to lose. We need to spark that hope. So that life can change.
From 2019 to 2022, the Rijksakademie van beeldende kunsten (Amsterdam), MACBA – Museu d’Art Contemporani de Barcelona, and WHW are co-producing the program Education from Below, which explores art as a place for dialogue, collective learning, and imagination. Pablo Martínez’s discussion is presented as part of this two-year collaborative project.
The program is supported by:
Foundation for Arts Initiatives
European Commission’s Creative Europe program
Kontakt Collection / ERSTE Foundation
Kultura Nova Foundation
Government Office for Cooperation with NGOs, Croatia
Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Croatia
City of Zagreb