The museum’s metamorphosis

“Gaia is just symbiosis as seen from space”—unknown Margulis’ student

Assembly for permacircular museums

The cultural sector is giving more and more space to ecological as well as postcolonial discourses, but at the same time is itself caught up in capitalist entanglements. How can its institutions make the radical shift towards a permacircular future?

In recent years there have been numerous artistic and discursive contributions across museums, biennials, and institutions that all addressed the following question: How can art contribute to fostering solidarity, ecological becoming, and multispecies caring? The emergence of this »terrestrial turn« in cultural spheres has been, however, codependent on the globalization of the art industry and its reliance on abundant fossil energy, cheap flights, and material accumulation. Simultaneously, postcolonial debates have also gained visibility in cultural spaces historically established on colonial theft. How can institutions reflect their footprint and conditions of production despite being situated in a capitalist context? In other terms, can the institution be trusted to reinvent itself and, if so, what should a museum be?

In sustainable economics, »permacircularity« advocates resizing organizations in balance with Earth systems, while also retooling knowledge and practices towards planetary reparation. Taking as a point of departure the ecological blind spot of the exhibitionary complex, this assembly convenes institution leaders, curators, activists, artists, and educators to explore museums’ potential to become agents of radical mutation.

Wed, 21.04.2021 – Sat, 24.04.2021

Read more @ ZKM | Center for Art and Media Karlsruhe