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Discussion and book launch of Museums, Transculturality, and the Nation-State with Sebastián Eduardo, Susanne Leeb, Nina Samuel, and other guests introduced by Anna-Catharina Gebbers.

Colourful Revolution 1, ‘paintballing’ of the refurbished building of the Government of Macedonia, Skopje, 1 May 2016. Photograph by Sašo Stanojkoviќ
Colourful Revolution 1, ‘paintballing’ of the refurbished building of the Government of Macedonia, Skopje, 1 May 2016. Photograph by Sašo Stanojkoviќ © Photograph by Sašo Stanojkoviќ

The book Museums, Transculturality, and the Nation-State. Case Studies from a Global Context aims at the contradictions when contemporary demands for transculturality and decoloniality meet institutions of the nation-state. While museums are an invention of modern nation-states, their role seems to fade into the background in times of transculturality. Last but not least, the "Museum Global" program of the German Federal Cultural Foundation has provided a dispersion of national narratives.

The approach of this project was: "To make visible the worldwide networks of relationships between people, artistic currents, and objects that have been largely neglected in the common narrative of modernity." Hamburger Bahnhof took part in this initiative with Hello World. Revisions of a Collection 2018 in this initiative of the German Federal Cultural Foundation. The current exhibition Nation, Narration, Narcosis: Collecting Entanglements and Embodied Histories continues the thread, asking about the often brutal processes of nation-building, the role assigned to art in this process, and what hegemonic as well as alternative forms of community and its narratives are conceivable and reflected in works of art.Narratives of transculturality and their material conditions often diverge, however.

With case studies from different geo- and socio-political contexts around the world, the contributors to Museums, Transculturality, and the Nation-State interrogate the role of the nation-state in museums, collections, and cultural heritage. They examine the ways in which nation-states still determine, or even help to change, the practices of collecting, circulation, and contemporary narratives. But they also ask about exhibition practices and museum approaches that take transcultural interconnectedness in immigrant societies seriously. The book includes contributions by Stanislas Spero Adotevi, Sebastián Eduardo Dávila, Natasha Ginwala, Monica Hanna, Rajkamal Kahlon, Suzana Milevska, Mirjam Shatanawi, Kavita Singh, Ruth Stamm, and Andrea Witcomb.

The event Hello Artwork, What is Your Nationality? extends the discussion in the publication Museums, Transculturality, and the Nation-State to include artists from the exhibition Nation, Narration, Narcosis: Collecting Entanglements and Embodied Histories, as well as other guests who address the question of the material conditions of actual transculturality. The book Museums, Transculturality, and the Nation State was edited by Susanne Leeb and Nina Samuel and is published by Transkript Verlag in the series "Edition Museum" at the end of March 2022 (ISBN: 978-3-8394-5514-2, Bielefeld 2022). The event is organized by Hamburger Bahnhof - Museum für Gegenwart - Berlin in collaboration with the Cluster of Excellence Matters of Activity. Image Space Material of the Humboldt University Berlin as well as the Leuphana University Lüneburg.

Please book a time slot ticket for the time of the event. The current information for visitors during the Corona pandemic valid on the day of the event applies.

(Talk in German)

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Price info: Free admission for children and young people up to the age of 18. Parents pay the participation fee plus admission.
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Hamburger Bahnhof - Museum für Gegenwart