Design Curating Now!

Design Curating Now! – seminar
September 2014, Design Week Helsinki

nynnyt was invited to give a speech as part of the Design Curating Now! Seminar in Helsinki in the autumn of 2014. They were asked to comment on contemporary design curating and the ethics behind it. In their turn of speech nynnyt addressed a claim that within curating art and design, often the reasons and consequences of producing exhibitions and events are not given much thought. They introduced an idea of looking at curating and organising – the working field of everyone present in the seminar – through some questions that the concept of critical management has introduced them:

What is the responsibility of a curator?

What is said and done here, and what follows these actions?

Are the thematic questions around ethics in exhibitions and events reaching the processes of producing them?

Am I acting responsibly towards everyone involved: towards my workers, the audience, the social surroundings, the environment and other species?

Who is included and more crucially, who is excluded by my actions?

Should I think about making the production smaller – is the size and length of it justified and ethically supported?

What does my budget really allow – what is really needed?

Am I paying everyone fairly and equally? A new item on one’s CV is not comparable to a salary gained from labour.

Is our work ethical also below the surface? What could be done differently?

Photo: Design Curating Now!, Aino Huovio, 2014