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Eva Barois de Caevel, vencedora do Independent Visual Curatorial Award 2014

Publicado11 Jan 2015

Imagem: Photo: David X Prutting, Billy Farrell Agency.

Eva Barois de Caevel  foi a vencedora do Independent Visual Curatorial Award 2014, uma iniciativa da Gerrit Lansing Education Fund. Nascida em Paris em 1989, licenciou-se pela Universidade da Sorbonne em História Contemporânea da Arte, especializando-se em imagens em movimento. A sua investigação prosseguiu focada nas quesões pós-coloniais e nas práticas de arte contemporânea socialmente comprometidas, procurando compreender como a arte contemporânea se pode constituir como forma de pensamento sobre o pós-colonialismo. Eva Barois de Caevel stá associada, como assistente curatorial, à Raw Material Company, em Dakar e é co-fundadora do Cartel de Kunst, um colectivo internacional e uma rede de solidariedade de curadores independentes, criado em 2011.com base em Paris

Sobre o prémio, o júri justificou assim a escolha:

Eva Barois De Caevel’s unflinching curatorial practice tackles some of today’s most urgent issues, including sexuality and human rights, in a postcolonial world. Working collaboratively to encourage dialogue and participation among her audiences, with issues both local and global, she is courageously expanding the curatorial field.

Nancy Spector, Deputy Director and Jennifer and David Stockman Chief Curator of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation

Em entrevista ao site Contemporay and, a curadora falou do prémio, da sua visão desta actividade, e do seu trabalho em Dakar.

D.D.: I have the feeling that every curator develops their own idea of their position. In your view, what is the curator’s role? What’s your attitude about the task in general?

E.B.D.C.: Yes, clearly [we all see it differently]. And that’s great! It’s hard to answer your question because I’m specifically avoiding narrowing myself down to a rigid definition of the curator’s role. It’s not an easy thing. You are often accused of thinking you’re the artist or that you’re the researcher, and people would rather hear you venture a vague definition of your role than try to understand how hard you work to interrogate the curator’s function, to adapt it to the fields that you feel need investigating, and to adjust to the practice of the artists you work with. I believe that the curator’s role can be very broad. It is unfair to restrict it to set categories or quibble over creative authorship. For example, it’s possible that in future exhibitions I might produce or commission objects myself if I consider them necessary alongside the artwork, archives, and text. In my mind, curators’ role is to create new exhibition paradigms and to provide critical and theoretical accompaniment to the artwork that fits the specific geographical and political realities of the show and responds to major artistic trends.

D.D.: You are one of the co-founders of the curators’ collective Cartel de Kunst. Is that a way for you to launch your career in the field without feeling “alone against everything” or is there a different logic behind it? How is working with the collective different from working independently? 

E.B.D.C.: Cartel de Kunst is an association that we created when we were still students completing our master’s program in 2011–2012 on “Contemporary Art and Exhibition” at the Sorbonne in Paris. We essentially saw it as a way to be young curators even though we were leaving the university setting to begin our professional lives, which we expected to be a tough transition. But, the ten members of the collective come from very different backgrounds and many of them have already had significant professional experiences. If you ask me, this collective is more than just a professional network, it’s an essential network of solidarity and friendship. I’ve always maintained a positive attitude as opposed to the general professional cynicism and the sense of being used that weighs down interns and young professionals. Starting the collective was a way of giving ourselves a role, giving ourselves power.

To respond to your second question, I’d say that working collectively is indeed different. Not different from working independently, since we are an independent collective (meaning that we are not permanently attached to an institution or organization), but different from work that I do on my own. My work with Cartel de Kunst does not consist of reflecting on the theoretical and critical fields that pervade the work I do in my own name, because – and this is specific to our collective – our activities are always focused on idea of teamwork itself. So everyone’s individual interests flourish elsewhere, even though I do also discuss my personal projects with the other members of the Cartel. But work in the collective flourishes on another level. Each of the three shows we’ve put on so far (one per year since we were established) has embodied a different perspective on the group and different ideas about the nature of curation. Besides, the group compels us to keep questioning ourselves, to keep moving forward. The group is all about discussion. There aren’t officially specified roles within the Cartel, so everything is in motion. Every decision is agreed on by the whole group. Sure, that translates into dozens of emails and meetings, but it’s exciting!

A entrevista completa, aqui