Sanhedrin Conference – Part I

Welcoming Remarks – Galit Eilat
Galit Eilat was the director and curator of the Israeli Center for Digital Art till the year 2010, and the chief editor of “Maarav” online magazine.

Post-National Narratives of Belonging – Nina Möntmann
In the beginning of the public museum in the 18th century, the Museum was a national project. Functioning alongside the state in forming the social order, its mission was to create the narrative of a representative national history and heritage. Today the situation of art institutions mirrors the general power relations of a late capitalist, neo-liberal constitution. But how can an art institution abandon its political strategic function and instead act out of reach of governmental influence? And how does this influence actually look in the age of global capitalism that produces free-market global managerial states merely led by economic interests? Nina Möntmann is head of the History and Theory Department at the Royal Academy for Art, Stockholm and an independent curator and critic.

Clashed Histories; the Role of the Municipal Museum in a Mixed City.The Case of the Haifa City Museum, Israel – Rona Sela

”History is a natural selection. Mutant versions of the past struggle for dominance; new species of fact arise, and old saurian truths go the wall, blindfolded and smoking last cigarettes. Only the mutations of the strong survive. The weak, the anonymous, the defeated leave few marks… History loves only those who dominate her: it is a relationship of mutual enslavement.” (Salman Rushdie, Shame, 1983, 133-134) Rona Sela is a curator and researcher, focusing on the visual history of the Israeli-Palestinian national conflict. (lecture is in Hebrew, see Hebrew issue)

New Territories in the Museum. Museum on New Territories. The Case of MOMA Warsaw – Ana Janevski
The lecture will deal with the history of the competition for the building of the Museum of Modern Art in Warsaw, designed by Christian Kerez, and its rebounds in the public sphere. It will also give an overview of the present activities in the temporary exhibition spaces of the Museum. Ana Janevski is a curator at the MOMA Museum, Warsaw.

From Municipal Museum to Contemporary Art Museum – Dalia Levin
The year 2000 marked the break of Herzliya Museum from its physical and conceptual past. The physical separation from Yad Labanim House, a memorial site for Herzliya’s fallen soldiers (once used as the main entrance of the museum), freed the museum to make curatorial decisions based solely on artistic considerations. At the same time the museum officially changed its name to Herzliya Museum of Contemporary Art, the final step in its transformation into a museum dedicated to contemporary Israeli and International art. These steps had significant ramifications on the interrelations of the museum with the municipality of Herzliya as well as with the financial powers at play in the Israeli art world. Dalia Levin is the director of the Herzliya Museum of Contemporary Art. (lecture is in Hebrew, see Hebrew issue)

Informal Matrices of Work of Moderna Galerija and Some Other Art Spaces in Slovenia – Zdenka Badovinac

Similary as elsewhere in Eastern Europe, Slovenia still doesn’t have an art system that would function on par with the one in the west, which makes the various associations and bonds of solidarity between artists, art spaces, and the interested public all the more important. They have led to informal matrices of work. The last example of these kinds of initiatives was a project called, Hosting Moderna Galerija, which involves more than twenty art spaces in Slovenia supporting Moderna Galerija that underwent serious political preasure in the last four years. Zdenka Badovinac is the director of the Museum of Modern Art, Ljubljana.

Panel Discussion – The Museum as a De / Re Constructor of Ideology
Zdenka Badovinac, Ana Jenevski and Dalia Levin. Moderator – Nina Möntmann