Independent Curators International supports the work of curators to help create stronger art communities through experimentation, collaboration, and international engagement.

Independent Curators International supports the work of curators to help create stronger art communities through experimentation, collaboration, and international engagement.

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The second Curatorial Forum developed by ICI in partnership with EXPO CHICAGO brought to Chicago 30 mid-career and established curators from across the country, working independently or with an institutional affiliation. The program was conceived to foster strong national and regional networks for curatorial and institutional collaboration, encourage critical thinking, and reflect on practices that are responsive to local art communities while inscribed in a global art discourse. This year's Curatorial Forum featured a Keynote Lectre presented by Jesús Carrillo, entitled "Collaborations and Conspiracies." In addition, a new program of peer-led closed-door sessions focused on critical questions relevant to curating, programming, institution-building and audience engagement.

Keynote
Jesús Carrillo

Jesús Carrillo is a Professor of Contemporary Art History at the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, and has been Head of the Cultural Programs Department of the Reina Sofía Museum since 2008.

Session Leaders
Valerie Cassel Oliver

Valerie Cassel Oliver is senior curator at the Contemporary Arts Museum Houston, Texas.

Larissa Harris

Larissa Harris is Curator at the Queens Museum, where she has organized a variety of exhibitions.

Miranda Lash

Miranda Lash is the Ellen Bruss Senior Curator at the Museum of Contemporary Art Denver.

Dominic Willsdon

Dominic Willsdon is an educator and curator. He is the Director of the Institute for Contemporary Art at Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, where he is also associate professor in art education.


Public Session 

Out of Body: Black Identity in Abstraction was a conversation between Valerie Cassel Oliver (a session leader at this year's Forum, and the Sydney and Frances Lewis Family Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art, The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts) and Naomi Beckwith (Marilyn and Larry Fields Curator, MCA Chicago), moderated by Romi Crawford (Visual Critical Studies and Liberal Arts Associate Professor, SAIC), presented at the /DIALOGUES talk series as part of the Curatorial Forum. The panel discussed how artists have used abstraction to challenge didactic ways of portraying the black body in art, exploring the work of Howardena Pindell, the influence of female and queer artists, and the space between artistic intention and critical response.
More information here.

Credits

The 2017 Curatorial Forum was made possible, in part, with the collaboration of Paula Crown and the PAHC/studio·lab. PAHC/studio·lab will also invite two curators to travel back to Chicago to further their research and engage with the studio as part of the Forum's Associate Curators Program. Additional support was provided by VIA Art Fund; Sotheby’s; Art Design Chicago, an initiative of the Terra Foundation for American Art; Willis Towers Watson; and Terry Dowd Inc.