Marialaura Ghidini, Visiting Research Fellowship 2021
Marialaura Ghidini, professor and course leader of the MA Curatorial Practices at Srishti Institute of Art, Design and Technology in Bangalore (India), is undertaking a research fellowship entitled ‘Curating on the Web’.
Starting from an historical mapping of curatorial strategies on the web, the research project focuses on curatorial work that subverts the assumptions and mechanisms of the digital economy by devising new models for the production and display of contemporary art online. If, since the ’90s, curating on the web has proposed a revision of the concepts of artistic originality, authorship, collection and archive, and audience participation in artistic and cultural processes, in recent years curators and artists have started to develop strategies that directly respond to the corporatization and hypermassification of the products of the digital industry (from cloud platforms to mobile applications, such as those for productivity and monitoring). The project explores the context and workings of such approaches, and the way they adopt strategies of appropriation, disruption and contamination of discourses, to propose a constructive critique of the impact of digital technology on art production, society and networked culture, and to create new support structures. In the light of the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic, the project aims to open up a discussion on the role that curating on the web can have on discussing the complexities of our contemporary moment – inclusion, exchange and care.
Ghidini is a curator whose work explores the intersections between art, technology and society, particularly the way in which technology morphs behaviours and relationships between people and the environment. Since her AHRC-funded PhD with CRUMB (University of Sunderland, 2015), she has researched the field of curating on the web, contributing her research to edited books, magazines and journals, such as the Arts Journal (2019) and the Journal of Curatorial Studies (2017). Interested in working with various exhibition formats, she founded the curatorial platform or-bits.com (2009-2015) and has curated projects such as ‘#exstrange’ (2017) on eBay; ‘Silicon Plateau’ (2015-) in print; ‘The C(h)roma Show’ (2014) in an electronics shop in Bangalore; ‘128kbps objects’ on basic.fm (2013) and ‘Search Engine’ (2012) across public spaces in Birmingham (UK). She has given lectures and workshops for a variety of audiences and organisations, from FICA and Art Asia Archive (India), to the University of Amsterdam, AV Festival and Fondazione Fotografia di Modena (Europe), to the New Media Caucus (NMC) conference and the Ross School of Business at University of Michigan (USA).
This research fellowship is a collaboration with the Exhibition Research Lab, supported by the Italian Council / Directorate-General for Contemporary Creativity (Italy), and includes sharing activities in collaboration with Walkin Studios in Bangalore and Nation25 in Rome (Italy).