Making the Historical Contemporary

Oct 10, 2011
Norwegian Museum of Architecture, Oslo

Seminar at the Norwegian Museum of Architecture, October 10th 2011.

Organized by Wallis Miller, Mari Lending, and Erik Langdalen.

The National Museum of Art, Architecture and Design in Oslo is planning to install a new permanent exhibition of Norwegian architecture. This enterprise poses some interesting dilemmas, as the exhibition has to deal with the troubling concept of a national canon, the selection of emblematic works and the overall curating of architectural history.

The National Museum will plan the exhibition in collaboration with OCCAS. We hope to turn the work-in-progress as well as its results into a field of experiment for the display of historical architectural material. The design of the permanent exhibition is an opportunity to go to the core of curatorial practices and strategies that de- and restructure architecture in the museum. Thus, we would like to investigate competing strategies of displaying, conserving, preserving and storing architecture with the expectation that our investigations will contribute to discussions about the way in which various ideals, ethics and aesthetics affect the distribution, appropriation, evaluation, and legacy of material culture. In addition, our hope is to use the exhibition’s variety of media and representations to showcase the potentials and scope of architecture on display, thematizing the exhibition of architecture itself.

The seminar “Making the Historical Contemporary” gathers curators, producers and architectural historians specializing in exhibitions for an in-depth discussion of the challenges and possibilities of the permanent architectural exhibition, laying out various approaches, traditions and working methods – historical and contemporary.

With: Nina Berre, director at the National Museum dept. of Architecture; Mari Lending, professor, The Oslo School of Architecture and Design; Wallis Miller, Associate Professor of Architecture at the University of Kentucky, and visiting professor at AHO; Abraham Thomas, curator at Victoria and Albert Museum, London; Corinne Bélier, Chief Curator of the modern and contemporary gallery, Musée des monuments français, Paris; Ole Boumann, director of the Netherlands Architecture Institute, Rotterdam; Christina Budde, Education Curator at Deutsches Architekturmuseum, Frankfurt am Main; Tim Knox, director of Sir John Soane’s Museum, London; Erik Fenstad Langdalen, professor, AHO.


Originally posted Oct 1, 2011. Latest revision May 4, 2021.

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