SERIES OF PUBLIC TALKS
The series of Public Talks will showcase speakers representing a range of diverse arts spaces and initiatives from around Southeast Asia and Vietnam, with an aim to further networking opportunities and the development of arts discourse for arts professionals in Ho Chi Minh City and Vietnam.
This series of talks is expected to benefit both the workshop participants as well as our local public and art community as it will revolve around some of the themes that we will explore in the workshop including these following suggested questions:
1) The AIS Project has an emphasis on working with mostly younger or emerging arts professionals. What is your own experience of inter-generational dynamics in the arts? How do you think one generation translates for the other, and how should we address these dynamics?
2) In the region, the last twenty years of cultural exchange — or cultural translation — has produced all kinds of exhibitions, residencies, publications, archives, collaborations with communities and so on. These conventional activities are still worth pursuing, but today many arts and cultural workers are searching for new ideas about how we gather together and interact — whether in local, regional or international contexts. What is your own experience with cultural exchange? How were the expectations of these gatherings communicated to participants? And how does one sustain the conversations that have taken place during the event after it concludes and participants go their separate ways?
3) Contemporary art and “digital culture” are characterised by plurality and fragmentation. Yet one of art’s big assumptions is that you can curate art from everywhere and exhibit it all within a single framework, like a biennale. No matter how unconventional, new art is ultimately read in the context of art history. This continuity makes it meaningful to speak of art as a specific category of cultural activity, even when one can’t draw clear boundaries around the field. Digital culture is even more plural and fragmented than art, yet it doesn’t describe a specific category so much as a universe of disparate phenomena. There is no equivalent of a biennale for digital culture, a single platform that can represent the scattered expanse of all things encoded into ones and zeros (from mobile phone multimedia to movies, music, video games, blogs and websites that cover everything from food to fashion to philosophy). If art is, deep down, discursive and reading-based, then digital culture is essentially participatory — something that we engage in. Digital content may dominate our attentions, but it’s not only the overlords of capitalism who are churning out this material. It’s us users who produce and curate a considerable share of the images, sounds and texts that fill up our drives, cloud servers and networks, which we sometimes broadcast for all to see. The digital revolution is changing how we read and write about contemporary art. How are you coming to terms with the cultural transformations of digital culture?