The role and function of the curator is being transformed by the modus operandi and creative practices of mediated art forms, interactive art and design. One of the effects of this transformation is the creation of a new emerging field that of sound art curating.
The theme of the seminars and the LEA Special Issue are organized around a number of seminars taking place in 2013 and 2014, which will focus on the methodologies, histories, theories and practices of sound art curating. The seminars will present an opportunity to focus on the increasing use of interactive art and design for curatorial purposes, which is transforming the curator’s role into a hybrid function placed between art, science and social technology.
Traditionally, the curator has been affiliated to the modern museum as the persona who manages an archive, and arranges and communicates knowledge to an audience, according to fields of expertise (art, archaeology, cultural or natural history etc.). However, in the late twentieth century the role of the curator changes - first on the art-scene and later in other more traditional institutions - into a more free-floating, organizational and ’constructive’ activity that allows the curator to create and design new wider relations, interpretations of knowledge modalities of communication and systems of dissemination to the wider public.
Furthermore, the nature of the archive and its stored objects has changed radically. With the urge of including new media and immaterial works of art into collections the complexity of the archive has simply outgrown traditional models of curating. Consequently, curators have started to develop and cultivate new ways and methodologies to ensure that sound art and archives reach the public.
Over the last decade or so, many interesting new methodologies have emerged within the field of sound curating. These methodologies are strictly linked to the creative use of digital technologies and computational techniques such as physical and tangible computing. Specifically, interactive art and design seem to offer a promising new potential for letting the audience experience and interact with sound objects (tangibly, bodily, etc.) and through that experience acquire insight and knowledge about them. In this sense interactive art and design obtain a meta-position - being works of art in themselves, but designed for the purpose of communicating and experiencing sound objects.
How does the modality of interactive art and design affect the methodologies of sound (art) curating?