Journal

Collecting Geographies: Close Reading of Collection Practices

On 13, 14 and 15 March 2014, the Stedelijk Museum organized the conference Collecting Geographies: Global Programming and Museums of Modern Art in collaboration with ASCA/ACGS of the University of Amsterdam, the Moderna Museet Stockholm, the Folkwang Museum Essen, and the Tropenmuseum Amsterdam. With over 80 papers, lectures and panel discussions, the conference offered a kaleidoscopic overview of the topical issues and questions that are currently at stake in the relation between museums, art institutions, globalization and post-colonial discourse.

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With the virtue of hindsight, we take the opportunity here to look back and share some tentative conclusions with you in a series of reports on a variety of sessions in the conference – also, having seen the extent of the program, it is likely people might have missed some interesting sessions. A small team of spirited writers has documented the highlights, critical insights and challenging discussions of the conference. Last month you could read their impression of the opening event here, followed by a report on the discussion Thinking Globally: Museums, Art and Ethnography after the Global Turn in the Tropenmuseum. In the following text you can read Michelle Sachtler’s account of the session that zoomed in on concrete case studies explicating one of the main questions in the conference: How do museums incorporate a global idea of art in their collection and acquisition practices?

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