Women’s Movements: Feminist Agency, 30.11-1.12 2012

Women’s Movements: Feminist Agency
Intersections of Activism, Archiving, Art, Art History, Critical Research, Curating, Education, Feminisms and Politics of Remembrance

curated by Elke Krasny

at < rotor > association for contemporary art Graz, Austria
November 30 – December 1, 2012



Feminisms have come of age. Since the early 2000s, a renewed interest in feminisms has sparked major art exhibitions such as Global Feminisms at the Brookly Museum of Art in 2007, Wack! Art and the Feminist Revolution at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles or Gender Check. Femininity and Masculinity in the Art of Eastern Europe at the mumok in Vienna. At the same time a proliferation of activist artistic, curatorial and educational practices have practiced a differentiated approach to politics of remembrance, activated queer-feminist strategies and established networks of translocal, transnational and transdisciplinary exchange on feminisms.

Today feminisms are not only challenged with the pressures of the global, but also with the challenges of developing feminist agency which is locally specific and time-specific. Feminist agency moves between practices and theories and is distinctly marked by engagement with different fields ranging from activism to curating, archiving to critical research, politics of remembrance to emancipatory models of education. Even though these fields are different, they are interconnected and can have strong effects on each other through „temporary alliances”, artist Isa Rosenberger repeatedly speaks of, through changing modes of collaboration, coproductions and exchanges. The history of feminisms and feminist strategies is not only marked by discontinuitites, but also by distinct geographic and regional differences in the former West, the former East, the global South or the global North. Curator Maura Reilly speaks of intersectionality, of difference, identity politics, postcolonialism and transnationalism.

Involved research and activating the archive, activist curating and ethics of curating, transnational exchange and collaboration and artistic practices entering the fields of the archive, the agenda of critical research, rethinking education and expanding the notions of curating have been on the forefront of feminist agency between practices and theories.

Given all these complex constellations, the meeting Women’s Movements : Feminist Agency aims to nurture exchange and possible future collaborations in a trans-disciplinary and trans-national approach. The „shared time with each other” will not be „public time” to present to a public as an audience. We are each other’s audience and will have time as a group to experience and learn about each other’s work, to find out about shared interests in varying fields and differing approaches, ways of working and identifications. The getting together is thought of as a situation of exchange between all of us and our practices and interests in order to create an opportunity to think alongside and beyond with each other and to think forward in finding out about shared interests or new questions arising out of the meeting. Sharing time with each other, learning about each other’s practices and thoughts might potentially lead into possible future exchanges and collaborations.



Carla Bobadilla, artist, curator, Vienna, Austria; Angela Dimitrakaki, writer, lecturer at the University of Edinburgh, UK; Susanna Gyulamiryan, art critic, curator, Yerevan, Armenia; N’Goné Fall, independent curator, art critic and consultant in cultural engineering, Paris, France / Dakar, Senegal; Sol Haring, freelance researcher, videographer, artist and musician, Graz / Klagenfurt, Austria; Reni Hofmüller, artist, musician, curator, Graz, Austria; Elke Krasny, curator, artist, cultural theorist, writer and senior lecturer at the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna, Austria; Margarethe Makovec, director of < rotor > association for contemporary art, Graz, Austria; Karin Ondas, managerial head of Doku Graz, Austria; Lara Perry, principal lecturer at the University of Brighton, UK; Jelena Petrović, author, editor, Belgrade, Serbia / Ljubljana, Slovenia; Dorothee Richter, art historian, author and curator, Stuttgart, Germany; Mirjam Westen, curator, critic and editor, Arnhem, The Netherlands; Julia Wieger, board member of the Vereinigung Bildender Künstlerinnen Österreich/ VBKOE, Vienna, Austria.


The structure of the two-day meeting Women’s Movements : Feminist Agency cinsisted with 2 parts:

– presentations by all the participants to share their practices, their work and their current questions, grouped in three different sections.

– a round-up after the first day to establish together the main topics to be discussed and developed the second day

– time for informal exchanges, dialogues, discussions.


Friday, November 30, 2012

9.30 – 9.45 Welcome statement by the hosts: Margarethe Makovec, Viola Bianchetti & Eva Meran (< rotor >)

Opening words by Elke Krasny

10.00 – 11.30 Section 1: Examples of agency of feminist curating, different perspectives

Mirjam Westen: Feminist futures, we need to attend the legacies of feminist pasts

Dorothee Richter: Dialogues and Debates. Rethinking feminist practices

Elke Krasny: Curatorial Constellations. Mapping the Everyday. Neighbourhood Claims for the Future

11.45 – 13.15 Section 2: Interdisciplinary feminist agency / Transnational experimental curating

Angela Dimitrakaki: Feminist Politics and Geographies of Sameness: Thoughts on Transnational Curating

Lara Perry: What a feminist network can (and can’t) do

Sol Haring: The Mis(sing) Representations of Women circling 50

13.15 – 14.45 Lunch Break / Buffet at < rotor >

14.45 – 16.15 Continuing Section 2: Interdisciplinary feminist agency / Transnational experimental curating

Susanna Gyulamiryan: From Gender to Curatorial Troubles

Carla Bobadilla: Sketches of Migration. Postcolonial Enmeshments. Antiracist Construction Work

Margarethe Makovec: Temporary Alliances

16.30 – 18.00 Section 3: DIY Archives

Jelena Petrović: Bring In Take Out Living Archive (LA) – Active Methodology of the Feminist Knowledge, Production.

Julia Wieger: Archives, Spaces, Histories, Futurities

Karin Ondas: Story-Telling in a feminist archive: Arranging, De-arranging and Re-arranging of self-perception. The case of the DOKU Graz archive.

18.15 – 19.00 Round-up / Collecting the themes to be discussed on Saturday


Saturday, December 1, 2012

10.00 -11.00 N’Gone Fall: Position of African women in the visual arts.

Reni Hofmuller: I enjoy sharing.



Biographies of particpants


Carla Bobadilla
born in Valparaíso (Chile) in 1976. Lives and works in Vienna, Austria, since 2002. She finished her studies in arts in 2000 with an MFA at the University of Playa Ancha, Valparaíso, Chile. Carla Bobadilla has had exhibitions in Austria and abroad. From 2003 to 2007, Carla Bobadilla has been working on an extensive photodocumentation about small businesses in the cities of Dakar, Hanoi, Valparaíso, Innsbruck and Vienna, which since then has been exhibited several times in Austria. Carla Bobadilla is also working as an artist/curator for exhibitions in Austria and Chile. Her main focus as an artist are topics such as migration, gender, post-colonialism and the developtment of small businesses in times of globalisation. She has received a scholarship from the Austrian government to work at the Cité Internationale des Arts de Paris in 2006. In 2007, she received the Theodor-Körner-award for art and research. Since 2009, she is giving workshops at Austrian and Chilean schools and art institutions. In 2010, she worked as editor of the book Sketches of migration, published by Löcker, Vienna.

www.carlabobadilla.at / www.carlabobadilla.posterous.com

Angela Dimitrakaki
(PhD) is Lecturer in Contemporary Art History and Theory at the University of Edinburgh. Her research has consistently engaged art as a platform for political intervention, having primarily focused on the uneven social realities of Europe, lens-based and performative practices. Drawing on Marxist and feminist thinking, her publications focus increasingly on globalisation, art and the production of an economic subject. Her single authored bookGender, ArtWork and the Global Imperative: A Materialist Feminist Critique (forthcoming from Manchester University Press in July 2013) is the first study in English to consider globalisation’s impact on art as a gendered practice. As a response to recent events, Angela also completed the single authored book Art and Globalisation in her native Greek (forthcoming in January 2013, Hestia Publishers, Athens).

Angela has just co-edited, with Lara Perry, the volume Politics in a Glass Case: Feminism, Exhibition Cultures and Curatorial Transgressions, Liverpool University Press 2013. Angela was a member of the Leverhulme-funded international research network on feminism, curating and transnationalism (2010- 2012), led by Lara Perry (PI) and is a member of the Global Visual Cultures research network based at the University of Barcelona. She is Corresponding Editor of the peer reviewed interdisciplinary journal HM: Research in Critical Marxist Theory, where she has formerly served as an Editor. Angela has participated in numerous conferences and research workshops internationally. Apart from her academic work, Angela is an established novelist in her native Greece, represented by Hestia Publishers and Ersilia Literary Agency, and having been shortlisted for six literary awards to date. She is a frequent contributor to the left national press and Adjunct Director of Kunsthalle Athena, an independent art centre set up in 2010 to enable new models of art intervention as a response to the current crisis and its repercussions for democracy. As a contribution to Kunsthalle Athena activities and in collaboration with artists Allan Sekula, Ursula Biemann, Johan Grimonprez and Renzo Martens, Angela organised an open school of seminars and screenings entitled ‘Capitalism and the Aesthetics of Knowledge in the 21st Century’, winter of 2010, at the National School of Fine Art Athens. Angela is currently curating with Kirsten Lloyd the international exhibition ECONOMY in Edinburgh and Glasgow, January to April 2013 (visit http://economyexhibition.net)

Susanna Gyulamiryan
born in Yerevan, Armenia, is an art critic and curator, who has been working in Armenia and internationally. Her current fields of interest include the epistemological, philosophical issue of the other, examination of biopolitics, gender and feminist issues in contemporary art practices, and the issue of “East-West”with mapping and researches on “imaginative geographies”.

In 2007, she collaboratively founded the “Art and Cultural Studies Laboratory” (ACSL), where she was the appointed president until nowadays. In 2008, she was an initiator of founding the “Art Commune” International Artist-in-Residence program in Armenia. Since 2006, she is a board member of AICA – Armenia (International Association of Art Critics).

More than ten years, Susanna Gyulamiryan has held courses in Cultural Studies at the Armenian Open University, Department of Fine Arts (International Academy of Education). She is an invited, associated nominator of the International Biennial Prize Council for outstanding achievements in Art and Politics by the Vera List Center for Art and Politics at the New School, New-York and nominator of the Price Council for the Annual award of the best article of Art Criticism launched by Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Armenia.

Recent Curatorial projects include: Dependency Culture as a State of Mind” (visual statement to Berlin Biennale (BB7) call, Berlin, Germany, 2012; Imaginative Geographies – Atlantis 11, HEICO (Heritage, identities and Communication in European Contemporary Art Practices), 54th Biennale, Venice, Italy, 2011; Gender Trouble- annual, Yerevan, Armenia, 2008-2011; Possibility of the Angel, 10th Biennale of Contemporary Art, Sharjah, UA, 2011; Subjects-Objects of History and their stories (Proekt FABRIKA, Moscow, RF,2010; Interdiagnosis – Forum of Contemporary Art, Yerevan, Armenia, 2008.

N’Goné Fall
graduated from the École Spéciale d’Architecture in Paris. She is an independent curator, art critic and consultant in cultural engineering. She has been the editorial director of the Paris-based contemporary African art magazine Revue Noire from 1994 to 2001. She edited books on contemporary visual arts and photography in Africa including An Anthology of African Art: The Twentieth Century, Photographers from Kinshasa and Anthology of African and Indian Ocean Photography: a century of African photographers. Fall curated exhibitions in Africa, Europe and USA. She was one of the curators of the African photography biennale in Bamako in 2001 and a guest curator of the 2002 Dakar biennale. As a consultant in cultural engineering, she is the author of strategic plans, orientation programs and evaluation reports for Senegalese and international cultural institutions. Fall is an associate professor at the Senghor University in Alexandria, Egypt (master department of cultural industries). She is also a founding member of the Dakar- based collective GawLab, a platform of research and production in the field of technology applied to artistic creativity.

Sol Haring
is an Austrian-based freelance researcher and videographer. Her research is grounded in the fields of gender, gerontology and new media – looking into learning/living strategies of women circling the age of 50. Sol, also an artist and musician, is producing digital material on ageing and getting older, the films can be found here: videography.mur.at

Sol Haring earned her doctorate in 2003 at the University of Graz, Austria in the field of educational science (adult education), where she has worked as an Assistant Professor for five years. She has worked as a Post Doc and Research Fellow at the University of East London (2003-2007) and the University of Graz, she has held a Visiting Professorship at CCNY/CUNY (2008). Teaching fields: Academic Writing, Methodologies, New Media, Gerontology and Gender Studies.
http://solways.mur.at http://videography.mur.at/category/sol-haring-film/

Reni Hofmüller
Artist, musician, composer, organisator, curator, based in Graz, Austria. Has realised projects in the fields of concerts, performances, video, photo, installations, internet, computing. Organisatorical activites in the art field (Eva & CO, ESC im Labor), working with free radio (Radio Helsinki), access for cultural producers to the internet (mur.at), 2001-2005 member of LTNC (feminist-queer project plattform), member of the Institut für Medienarchäologie [Institute for Media Archaeology]. Has been dealing with linguistics, Spanish, muic science, history, biology, meda activism, self-organisation, DIY.


Elke Krasny
is Senior Lecturer at the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna. In 2006, she was Visiting Professor at the University of Bremen. Her research-based practice as a curator, artist, cultural theorist and writer deals with architecture, urban transformation processes, spatial politics, issues of politics of remembrance and processes of identification and feminist historiography, in particular the history of feminist curating. She works with the formats of books, exhibitions, symposia and walks.

In 2008, she presented The Force is in the Mind. The Making of Architecture at the Architecture Centre Vienna, in 2010 Penser tout Haut. Faire l’Architecture at the Centre de Design de l’UQAM Montréal. She was part of the curatorial team of Annenviertel! The Art of Urban Intervention, an EU-project led by < rotor > association for contemporary art in Graz and realized a series of community-oriented Annenviertel- walks within the frame of the programme.

Together with Eva Egermann, she curated the exhibition 2 or 3 Things we’ve learned. Intersections of Art, Pedagogy and Protest at the Austrian Artists’ Association in Vienna (IG Bildende Kunst Wien) in 2010. As curator-in-residence of the Hongkong Community Museum Project, she realized the walks Hongkong City Telling. As artist-in-residence she curated Mapping the Everyday: Neighborhood Claims for the Future at the Audain Gallery Vancvouver. In 2012, she was Visiting Scholar at the Canadian Centre for Architecture, Montréal. Her exhibition Hands-on Urbanism 1850-2012. The Right to Green was presented at the Architecture Centre Vienna and invited by David Chipperfield to the Venice Architecture Biennale 2012.

Karin Ondas
born in 1977, living and working in Graz. She studied Political Science, Philosophy and Sociology at Vienna and Tel Aviv University, and since 2008 Gender Studies at the University of Graz. Since 2011, she is managerial head of DOKU Graz, Women’s Documentary and Project Center. Between 2005 and 2011, she was working at the University of Graz, Department for Quality Management and Performance Management: in charge of Strategic projects, development and implementation of governing instruments. From 2003 to 2004, Center for Encounters and Communication, Jerusalem: Development of an Israeli-Palestinian-German Center. In charge of teambuilding measures, joint projects, budget management. 1996-1999: Staff member of the Intercultural Center, Vienna.

Experience in organizational development and implementation of governing instruments, extensive experience in cross-cultural project implementation.

Margarethe Makovec
born in Vienna. In 1994, together with Anton Lederer, she started to present art to the public at their own home. Five years later, they founded < rotor > association for contemporary art (www.rotor.mur.at) in Graz. Their programme concentrates on socially and politically relevant art production and they have developed a focus on cooperations with the art scenes of Central, Eastern and South Eastern Europe. The public and social space plays an important role in their considerations as it offers the possibility to bring people in touch with contemporary art, who themselves would maybe never enter an indoor art space.

www.rotor.mur.at / www.landofhumanrights.eu / http://www.aoui.mur.at

Lara Perry
studied history at the University of British Columbia, Canada and the University of York, UK, as a Commonwealth Scholar. Since obtaining her PhD, she has taught at the University of Southampton, Newcastle University and is currently the Academic Programme Leader in History of Art and Design at the University of Brighton, where she has worked since 2006. A book based on her doctoral thesis was published in 2006 titled History’s beauties: women and the National Portrait Gallery 1856-1900; it is one of only a few works which attempts an historical analysis of gender in the formation of a specific museum collection and building. She has written on contemporary displays at the National Portrait Gallery (Visual Culture in Britain, 2001) and at Tate Modern (forthcoming, 2013), and is the co-editor of a book of essays with Angela Dimitrakaki, Politics in a glass case: feminism, exhibition cultures and curatorial transgressions. She was the lead applicant in the Leverhulme Trust international network on Feminism and Art Curating, which ran from November 2010 to May 2012 and involved participants from Canada, the US, Sweden, Estonia and the UK (http://arts.brighton.ac.uk/research/irn). She was one of the organizers of the symposium Civil Partnerships? Feminist and Queer Curating at Tate Modern in May 2012.

Jelena Petrović
completed studies at the Faculty of Philology at the University of Belgrade and PhD studies at the Institutum Studiorum Humanitatis, ISH – Ljubljana Graduate School of Humanities with a PhD thesis on the women’s authorship in Yugoslavia between two world wars (2009). Author of many scholarly articles, events and multidisciplinary projects relating to the post/Yugoslav subjects – particularly to the mis/interpretative models of Yugoslav history, memory, culture, language and identities toward new epistemological models of knowledge production.

Co-editor of several publications:Gender, literature and cultural memory in the post-Yugoslav space (2009), Feminism – Politics of Equality for All (2011), Yugoslav Feminisms (2011). Member of the editorial board of the Belgrade’s Journal ProFemina, of the art-theory group Grupa Spomenik/Monument Group. Co-founder and member of the feminist curatorial group Red Min(e)d (2011) and co-author of the Red Min(e)d’s long-term project: Bring In Take Out Living Archive. Affilaiteed with the ISH postgradute program in humanities as the assistent professor of anthropology.

Research fields: social communication, woman’s authorship, politics of memory, feminism, artistic practices and theory, emancipatory politics of knowledge production, Yugoslav studies.

Dorothee Richter
art historian, author, curator. Organised symposiums as Curating Degree Zero – an international symposium on curating, 1998, GAK, Bremen (with Barnaby Drabble); Dialogues and Debates – feminist positions in contemporary visual arts, 1999; The Quintessiental Hold of Images, 2001 (with Sigrid Adorf and Kathrin Heinz); The Visuality of Theory vs. The Theory of the Visual, (with Nina Moentmann); Re-Visions of the Display: Exhibition Scenarios, Their Readings and Their Publics, 2007, Migros Museum (with Jennifer John and Sigrid Schade); Communitiy_ perhaps (with Jörg Huber and Elke Bippus); Institution as Medium. Curating as Institutional Critique? at Friedericianum Kassel (concept with Rein Wolfs).

1995-1997 She was director of the Lichthaus in Bremen, 1999-2003 artistic director of Kuenstlerhaus Bremen, where she curated a series of year long exhibition and event programs including: over high, over flow; naming a practice, collaboration – a practise which creates an environment. Dorothee Richter and Barnaby Drabble initiated Curating Degree Zero Archive: an archive, travelling exhibition and web resource on critical curating, www.curatingdegreezero.org, shown and re-interpreted with artists, curators, designers in Basel, Genf, Linz, Bremen, Bristol, Lueneburg, Birmingham, London, Berlin, Edinburg, Milano, Seoul, Paris, Bergen and Cork from 2005 to the present day.

Dorothee Richter lectured at University of Bremen, University of Lueneburg, Ècole des Beaux Arts in Genève, Merz Akademie in Stuttgart, was research associate “Exhibition Displays” at School of Art and Design in Zurich, Director of the Postgraduate Program in Curating at the School of Art and Design in Zurich, www.curating.org, and initiator of a web.journal on curating, that is online since June 2008, www.on- curating.org. Since 2012, she is PHD adviser at the University of Reading for a practice based PHD in curating. The most recent curatorial project inter/act: New Social Sculptures is a collaboration with the Kunsthmusem Thun.

Publications: Curating Degree Zero – an international symposium on curating ed.:D. Richter und E.Schmidt, Nurnberg 1999; Dialogues and Debattes – on feminist positions in contemporary fine arts, ed.: D.Richter, Die Höge, Nurnberg, 2000; Programming for a Kuenstlerhaus, ed.: D.Richter, Kuenstlerhaus Bremen; 2002; The Visuality of Theory vs. The Theory of the Visual, (ed. Nina Moentmann, Dorothee Richter) Frankfurt 2004; Curating Critique, ed: B.Drabble, D.Richter, ICE, Edinburgh, Frankfurt 2008; Re- Visions of the Display: Exhibition Scenarios, Their Readings and Their Publics, Zürich 2009; Mit Sein, ed. Elke Bippus, Jörg Huber, Dorothee Richter; 2010; 15 Issues of On-Curating.org.
www.curatingdegreezero.org / www.curating.org / www.on-curating.org

Mirjam Westen
is a curator, critic and editor in the field of contemporary art, gender and global art. Her essays and reviews have been widely published in journals, art magazines and catalogues. She is editor of the exhibition catalogue rebelle. Art & Feminism 1969-2009. (Arnhem 2010) and co-editor of Elck zijn waerom. Vrouwelijke kunstenaars in België en Nederland, 1500-1950 (Antwerp 1999).

Working as a senior curator of contemporary art in the Museum voor Moderne Kunst Arnhem (NL), she has curated numerous exhibitions from 1991 to the present day. In addition to her curatorial and writing activities, she gives lectures. She is member of AICA and of the International Association of Curators of Contemporary Art (IKT). Mirjam Westen is based in the Netherlands.

Publications include reviews in magazines, amongst other Boekman, Opzij; HN magazine; Lover; n_paradoxa, Art Pulse. Essays published in catalogues. Recent publications include essays in / and editing of: How many nations are inside you? In: Mariska ter Horst (ed.) Changing Perspective. Dealing with Globalisation in the Presentation and Collection of Contemporary Art. Amsterdam: Framer Framed 2012; Shilpa Gupta_will we ever be able to mark enough? Arnhem: MMKA 2012; ‘Geen talent voor ondergeschiktheid. Enkele overpeinzingen over huishouden en vrouwelijkheid in de kunst’.([No talent for subordination. Household and femininity in art], In Maja van Hall. Den Haag: Sculpture Institute 2012, pp. 58-71, Berni Searle. Interlaced. Arnhem/Brugge/Metz: 2011; ‘Katy Deepwell Women artists between the wars. ‘A fair field and no favour’. Review in Boekman 87, 2011; ‘Gender Check: Femininity and Masculinity in the Art of Eastern Europe’. Review in Art Pulse, Summer 2011, p.80; ‘Marktstallen. De Biënnale van Venetië 2011’. In: Lover jrg. 38, najaar 2011, p.26-29; rebelle. Art & Feminism 1969-2009. Arnhem: MMKA 2010; ‘The Ideal Individual’. In L.A. Raeven. Hatje Cantz: 2010; ‘Imagine a World without status. Interview with Kinke Kooi’. In Kinke Kooi. Arnhem/ New York 2009

Julia Wieger
studied architecture in Vienna and Buenos Aires. She has been part of several art and research collectives working on topics such as spaces of knowledge production (manoa free university, 2005-06), sex, work and society (Girls On Horses, 2007-09) and edutainment architectures (minigruppe 2008), many of them resulting in exhibitions like W…WirWissen (Kunsthalle Exnergasse, Vienna, 2005), Toposcapes (Pavelhaus, Laafeld, 2007), Arbeiten Lernen (Academy of Fine Arts Vienna, 2008), The Third Place (Grazer Kunstverein, 2009), Der Ort als Abstand (WCW Gallery, Hamburg, 2010), 2 or 3 things we’ve learned (IG Bildende Kunst, Vienna, 2010).

Since 2007, Julia has been involved in the Vereinigung Bildender Künstlerinnen Österreichs (VBKOE), a women artists association founded in 1910. She co-organized the annual programs Post Prolo Club (2007), 100 Poster Club (2010), as well as the show Dear Anus (2008). In 2011, she became member of the new VBKOE board that set out to remodel the association’s structure and program. Together with fellow board member Nina Höchtl, she recently founded the Secretariat for Ghosts, Archival Politics and Gaps (Sekretariat für Geister, Archivpolitiken und Lücken, www.skgal.org) – a new branch of VBKOE that intends to push research on the association’s 102-year history and to put forward more general questions about feminist historiography. Within the frame of this year’s Wienwoche festival they organized the Secretariat’s first program, The Many Archives.
http://www.skgal.org / http://www.vbkoe.org

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