Readings recommended by CIMAM members

12 April 2024

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For the week of April 12, 2024, we have some reading recommendations for you that have been suggested by CIMAM members. These articles and books are related to museums and collections of modern and contemporary art. Additionally, we suggest that you watch Daina Leyton's presentation from the CIMAM Annual Conference 2023, which was held in Buenos Aires.


"The environmental impact of an exhibition"

Life-cycle assessment of "Europa Oxalá." Authors: Maria do Rosário Palha, Patrícia Fernandes, Sara Pais. Published by Gulbenkian Studies.

“The art world is currently the stage of an important debate in the broader context of the fight against climate change and the conservation of ecosystems, species and the planet’s habitability. It is also the theatre for knowledge production, discussion and the exchange of ideas, and for experimentation as a means towards a more sustainable society. In fact, in recent years this sector has shown that it is particularly mindful of ecological and sustainability challenges. Paradoxically, this world may not be very respectful of these designs: a dynamic and global market, with a multitude of actors, institutions and multinational initiatives, continuous travel, and unlimited resources spent. This study reflects the concerns of the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation in this discussion. A producer of hundreds of artistic events per year, including more than a dozen international exhibitions, the Foundation is the destination of hundreds of thousands of visitors, boasting several thousand square meters of exhibition space and theclimate-controlled storage of artwork and books. The life-cycle assessment of the Europa Oxalá exhibition, an artistic European and Europeanist project bringing together over twenty artists whose work centres around post-colonial Europe, is a unique case study to understand and deconstruct the way in which the most well-intentioned activity can have a pernicious effect on everyone’s lives”.

"Marie Orensanz: El fluir del pensamiento"

Authors: Diana Beatriz Wechsler; Marie Orensanz and published by Eduntref.

Canvases and papers, moving images, wooden or concrete volumes and marbles are the supports chosen by Marie Orensanz to inscribe her ideas: open and creating before the spectator a universe to be deciphered. Her sensitivity is in line with the simplicity and significance that inhabit her work. That is why we chose to dedicate this book to him in a special format. When we open it, on the one hand, it brings together Diana Wechsler's curatorial essay and the complete repertoire of the works exhibited at MUNTREF; on the other hand, we find a selection of texts and materials from the artist's archive, which she herself chose to present as part of this publication.

"Beyond the Door of No Return Confronting Hidden Colonial Histories Through Contemporary Art"

Author: Selene Wendt. Publisher: The Africa Institute and Skira Editore.

Beyond the Door of No Return confronts hidden colonial histories through the lens of contemporary art. Drawing on extensive research and her longtime experience as a scholar and curator, Selene Wendt presents and critically investigates artworks by artists such as John Akomfrah, La Vaughn Belle, Manthia Diawara, Jeannette Ehlers, Michelle Eistrup, Sasha Huber, Oceana James, Patricia Kaersenhout, Grada Kilomba, Suchitra Mattai, and Alberta Whittle, providing insight into aspects of colonial history that have been overlooked. As a result, Wendt exposes the long-term effects of colonialism on modern-day societies. As the first in the series of co-publications by the Institute and Skira, Beyond the Door of No Return was published in October 2021.


Daina Leyton, Cultural Accessibility Consultant from the Moreira Salles Institute in São Paulo, Brazil presentied "Cultural Accessibility: Fundamental Rights and Poetic Experiences,"

Day 2 at the CIMAM Annual Conference 2023 in Buenos Aires, around the topic "The Role of Museums in Communities, Education, and Accessibility"

Leyton took us on a journey through various Brazilian cultural centers, including the São Paulo Museum of Modern Art, Sesc Belenzinho, and the Moreira Salles Institute. At the core of her discussion is the profound understanding of culture and accessibility as fundamental rights. She challenges us to ponder on the meaning of accessibility and explore how we can create, produce, and enjoy culturally enriching activities that foster a sensitive experience for individuals with disabilities.

Access the Members Only section to get further reading recommendations by CIMAM members.