deviant practice

Surasi Kusolwong, The Question Painting March, Be(com)ing Dutch 2006. Photo: Peter Cox

Research Grants 2016-17: Deviant Practice

As part of the Van Abbemuseum’s research programme a number of research grants have been awarded to artists, archivists, writers and curators under the title Deviant Practice:

Deviance can be understood as veering away from the entrenched path. For the modern art museum these paths emerged from the west’s understanding of itself and by inference its relationship to others. An exploration of deviant practice necessarily involves undoing long-held institutional, racial, geo and bio political formations. We therefore understand the prefix ‘de’ (‘off’) in deviance in relation to notions of demodernising, decolonising, deprivelleging or deneoliberalising – key strategies we hope to explore.

The focus on the first grants is on two research tools: Archives and Constituencies.
- Archives: The Van Abbe understands the archive as encompassing the collection of art works, the library’s collection and the museum’s paper archives. Archives are what defines a museum. It is, for better or worse, the heritage we hold. If deviant practice holds within it the need to challenge, consider and undo entrenched paths, the archive would appear to offer the means with which to do that.

- Constituencies: Today more than ever, the museum cannot define it's subjects. It needs to understand them and form positions with them. Understanding how to work with and through different constituencies therefore seems vital when thinking about how to institute deviant practice. Yet it also has implications for how the museum works with it's archives and building.

Researchers will present their research and a public paper for publication within the Van Abbe and/or L’Internationale digital platforms in september 2017. 

Charl Landvreugd
Charl Landvreugd examines the visual strategies used by Dutch Afro artists with a focus on the production of cultural citizenship. He argues that the dialogue dominated by postcolonial theory is not always adequate to describe the specific nature of Dutch and continental European Afro art production.

Sara Giannini
Sara is a semiotician engaged in curating, writing, and editing. Her research focuses on the liminality of language and representation resulting in collaborative projects with artists, curators and practitioners in other disciplines. 

Petra Ponte
Petra Ponte is a freelance curator, cultural producer and researcher based in Amsterdam. She holds a BA in Theatre Studies and an MA in Contemporary Art History from the University of Amsterdam.

Michael Karabinos
Michael Karabinos is an archival theorist based in Amsterdam. Combining questions on the nature of archives with their role in the decolonization of Southeast Asia.

Winnie Sze
Winnie Sze proposes to interrogate the significant but overlooked role a black African artist played on the founding of CoBRA.

Eimear Walshe
Eimear Walshe 1992 is an artist and writer from Longford, Ireland. Walshe's work seeks to reconcile queer histories with personal or local narratives through fiction, biography, and academic writing. 

Susan Pui San Lok
Susan Pu San Lok is an artist, writer and researcher based in London. Her work ranges across installation, moving image, sound, performance and text, evolving out of interests in notions of nostalgia and aspiration, place and migration, translation and diaspora.

Sebastian Cichocki, Kuba Szreder, and Meg Down
The research project Constituencies-Art Nexus is located in the ongoing, international debate attuned to new institutional models. Formulas including the curatorial open form, museum 3.0, and deviant art museum are coined in order to respond to the ongoing crisis in democracy and systems of social welfare. 

Brook Andrew
Brook Andrew is an interdisciplinary artist who aims to interrogate the main archives of the Van Abbemuseum, re-creating and sorting them into new constellations with his own archive that extends from colonial times to the present.