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Text at the museum - conference programme

Photo by Mirosław Żak - Photography Studio NMK

Text at the museum - conference programme

MNK The Main Building

al. 3 Maja 1
10 a.m. - 6:05 p.m.
Written text – a medium of expression present in many forms within the space of the museum and other exhibition institutions – is perceived as one of the secondary actors in their operation.

Marking out the path towards the object-centre, it plays the role of a guide and something that helps work out its meanings. The marginal position of text is often a mystification – in fact, written text is ever-present at the museum: it replaces, adds and specifies, effectively competing with the less tangible image.

It is the text that outlines the visiting direction, expresses the curator’s idea and adds to the content of exhibits. Therefore its status is ambivalent – the same as the status of the institution appointed to accompany the object. The text negotiates its subjectivity with the exhibit. As a result the emancipated text may even become a separate work and an independent exhibit.

It seems so far the text has not acquired as an important function in the museum theory as it plays in practice. The aim of the conference is to collect theoretical views on the role of the written word within the museum space as well as to gather and analyse specific cases of designing the text accompanying the operation of museums and exhibition institutions. The meeting wants to encourage critical reflection upon the question of the place and form of the written text at the museum, and as well as offering theoretical discussion, it aims to give practical instructions: how to create texts to make them meet the expectations and fulfil the objectives of the museum institution in its contact with the recipient.


October 26, 2016, the Main Building, National Museum in Krakow, al. 3 Maja 1, 30-062 Krakow

  • 10.00 – Welcome
    dr hab. Andrzej Szczerski
    - Deputy Director for Academic Affairs, National Museum in Krakow
    dr hab. Łukasz Gaweł
    - Deputy Director of for Strategy, Development and Communications, National Museum in Krakow
  • 10.15 – Keynote speech
    Dorota Jędruch
    - National Museum in Krakow
  • 10.35 - 11.55 – Session I - Group 1

    1.Dorota Korwin-Piotrowska (Jagiellonian University in Cracow) "Text at the museum – persprectives, forms, styles"

    2. Katarzyna Barańska, Joanna Hajduk, Piotr Idziak (The Małopolska Institute of Culture, Cracow) "Essence or the substance of things. Discovering of the museum's fundamental text"

    3. Isabelle Fiedler, Olivia Harrer (MAK Vienna, Künstlerhaus Vienna) "The communicative museum – a consensus-orientated museum communication (COMC)"

  • 11.55 - 12.10 – Coffee break
  • 12.10 - 13.30 – Session II - Group 1

    1. Barbara Margarethe Eggert (Danube University Krems) "The Invisible Codification – Audio Guides and the Role of the Implied Listener"

    2. Sarah Merten (Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts) "On representation and Legitimation. Political Dimensions of Texts about Visual Art in the Exhibition Context"

    3. Peter-David Friedrich (Bielefeld University) "Exhibition Labels – The Symbiosis between Text and Artwork"

  • 13.30 - 14.40 – Lunch
  • 14.40 - 16.20 – Session III - Group 1

    1. Marcin Szeląg (The Ossolinski National Institute, Wrocław; Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań) "Text at the museum for whom?"

    2. Agnieszka Fulińska (Jagiellonian University in Cracow) "Biased views, changing perspectives. The 'rhetoric' of the text at the museum"

    3. Dorota Otwinowska (National Museum in Cracow) "Text at the museum and its role in the shaping of the viewer's knowledge and aesthetical experience"

    4. Ewa Klekot (University of Warsaw,The Museum of Warsaw) "Does the text in the museum need to make you think?"

  • 16.20 - 16.35 – Coffee break
  • 16.35 - 17.55 – Session IV - Group 2

    1. Francesca Gallo (La Sapienza, Rome) "Written texts at the exhibition Les Immateriaux: How was writing transformed by digital turn?"

    2. Hana Vondrů (Masaryk University, Brno) "Types of aesthetic perception (by Władysław Tatarkiewicz) applied to the passive and active expression of exhibited text"

    3. Mirjam Dénes (Museum of Fine Arts, Budapest) "In Search of Prince Genji – Japan in Words and Images. Curatorial reflections on an exhibition of visual arts about The Tale of Genji"

  • 19.00 - Conference Banquet

October 27, 2016, the Main Building, National Museum in Krakow, al. 3 Maja 1, 30-062 Krakow

  • 10.00 - 11.40 – Session V - Group 2

    1. Markéta Jonášová (Central Saint Martins, London) "The Current Art of Labels: Implications of labelling strategies deployed in contemporary art museums in the Netherlands

    2. Magdalena Mazik (Museum of Contemporary Art in Krakow MOCAK) "The space of creative work. Mieczysław Porębski's library at MOCAK (Museum of Contemporary Art in Cracow)"

    3. Anna Gil, Agata Jabłońska, Marta Kuźmińska, Piotr Policht, Vera Zalutskaya, Maja Starakiewicz (Jagiellonian University in Cracow) "Curatorial practice. Around the exhibition created by the Jagiellonian University Art History specialized seminar students."

    4. Monika Bielak (www.cargocollective.com/antoniszczak-bielak) "Exhibition as a space of negotiation between the text and the image"
  • 11.40 - 11.55 – Coffee break
  • 11.55 - 13.15 – Session VI, Group 2

    1. Kim Dhillon (Royal College of Art, London) "From informational and Analytical Texts to Subjectivities and Psychoanalysis: Text as Material, Method, and Subject in Mary Kelly's Post-Partum Document (1973-79), with Particular Attention to the 1976 Exhibition at the ICA, London"

    2. Wiktoria Kozioł (Jagiellonian University in Cracow) "Logic of the images versus rhetoric of the image: works of polish critical artists in the context of researches on the textual layer of exhibitions."

    3. Anna Kapusta (Jagiellonia University in Cracow, University of Warsaw) "Quotation at work. Case study of cultural textual therapy based on the Admissions ward for poor objects. Re-COLLECTIONS from Kantor exhibition"

  • 13.15 - 14.30 – Lunch
  • 14.30 - 15.50 – Session VII, Group 2

    1. Bożena Pysiewicz (National Museum in Warsaw) "Observations, identifications and interpretations. On the role, place and public perception of the labels made by children for the National Museum in Warsaw exhibition."

    2. Jona Piehl (Central Saint Martins, London) "Designing exhibition texts/Designing the text 'exhibition'"

    3. Eva Meran (University of Applied Arts, Vienna) "Text as a Medium of Education in Art Exhibitions: Functions, Attitudes, Perspectives"

  • 15.50 - 16.05 – Coffee break
  • 16.05 - 17.25 – Session VIII, Group 2

    1. Agata Małodobry (National Museum in Cracow) "Between the easthetical consistency and the legible message. The presence of text in museum exhibition spaces in the light of contemporary critique"

    2. Zeljka Miklosevic (University of Zagreb) "Experiencing art works through a foreign language"

    3. Nathaniel Prottas (Wien Museum, Vienna) "Against Texts: Dialogical Engagement without Texts"

  • 17.25 - 18.05 – Conclusion
    dr Agnieszka Gryska
    - Jagiellonian University in Krakow

Sessions Chairs: prof. dr hab. Wojciech Bałus (Jagiellonian University in Krakow), dr Barbara Margarethe Eggert (Danube University Krems), dr Francesca Gallo (Sapienza University, Rome), dr hab. Łukasz Gaweł (National Museum in Krakow), dr Agnieszka Gryska (Jagiellonian University in Krakow), Dorota Jędruch (National Museum in Krakow), dr Dorota Korwin-Piotrowska (Jagiellonian University in Krakow), dr Ewa Klekot (University of Warsaw, The Museum of Warsaw), dr hab. Andrzej Szczerski (National Museum in Krakow)



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