Archive and curatorship project kicks off

19 September 2011

Prof James ElkinsLet images speak: Prof James Elkins addresses the launch of the project Archive and Curatorship: The visual university and its columbarium.

A talk in August by renowned art historian and visual theorist Professor James Elkins marked the launch of a new research project, Archive and Curatorship: The visual university and its columbarium.

Supported by the Vice-Chancellor's Strategic Fund, the project is anchored by two existing and complementary projects at UCT - the Centre for Curating the Archive at the Michaelis School of Fine Art, and the Archive & Public Culture Research Initiative, funded by the National Research Foundation and based in UCT's Department of Social Anthropology. The new umbrella project offers opportunities to highlight the many projects at UCT already involved with archive and curatorship.

"There are objects and images everywhere in the university," says Professor Carolyn Hamilton, who holds the NRF Chair in Archive and Public Culture. "They are to be found in its classrooms, laboratories, storerooms and assembled collections; in the working materials and offices of its scholars; in its constituted libraries and museums and at the heart of many disciplines."

In keeping with the new project, Elkins, of the Art Institute of Chicago, considered the variety of image-making and image-interpreting practices employed at universities today. These images, he said in his talk, Visual Practices Across the University, should be given the platform to speak for themselves.

For more information, visit the ARC website.

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