Co-Curation as Hacking: Biohackers in Copenhagen’s Medical Museion

Abstract. In 2012, the University of Copenhagen’s Medical Museion collaborated with members of the local DIY biology community to create a DIY biology lab and event series. This article discusses the project and the hacker movement more generally with reference to two current museum trends: first, the opening up of museums through external collaborations, for instance […]

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Creating Discursive Space for Intercultural Encounters: La Casa Encendida, Madrid

Abstract. As increasingly heterogeneous museum audiences seek to participate actively in museum discourses, a new question arises: who is included in the conversation? This article extends that question to cultural-spatial production, and seeks to illuminate key players’ roles in creating spaces that welcome marginalized groups in order to facilitate intercultural encounters. It argues that inclusive, discursive […]

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Permission Granted: A Case Study of the Challenges and Opportunities of Creating Community Experiences at the Gladstone Hotel

Abstract. How do we create the conditions for dialogue and exchange within a cultural institution? When we cannot define a project from the outset, can we collectively create parameters for communities to unpack their own narratives in an inclusive and dynamic way? This paper examines the alternative models of exhibition and programming that are being employed […]

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Dialogical Curating: Towards Aboriginal Self-Representation in Museums

Abstract. In 1979, Michael Reddy investigated the effects that “conduit” metaphors have on human communication. His research illustrates that people tend to conceptualize feelings, thoughts, or ideas as substances “transmitted” from one agent to another through a “conduit,” or as loosely “contained” in ambient spaces. Following a cognitive-linguistic approach, this article investigates the effects that “conduit” […]

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Under the Spell of Metaphors: Investigating the Effects of Conduit and Container Metaphors on Museum Experience

Abstract. In 1979, Michael Reddy investigated the effects that “conduit” metaphors have on human communication. His research illustrates that people tend to conceptualize feelings, thoughts, or ideas as substances “transmitted” from one agent to another through a “conduit,” or as loosely “contained” in ambient spaces. Following a cognitive-linguistic approach, this article investigates the effects that “conduit” […]

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“An Arena Where Meaning and Identity Are Debated and Contested on a Global Scale”: Narrative Discourses in British Museum Exhibitions, 1972–2013

Abstract. Following the so-called narrative turn in the social sciences, museums have increasingly been conceptualized as narrative environments (MacLeod 2012). This narrative approach is characterized by a focus on museum exhibitions as spaces that tell stories rather than as repositories of knowledge (Roberts 1997). Despite the ubiquity of the term “narrative” in museums, relatively few studies have […]

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Narrative, Story, and Discourse: The Novium, Chichester

Abstract. This article seeks to engage with the notion of “discourse,” and to test and apply ideas from literary and film theory in the analysis of architectural—and particularly museum—space. It examines the complex set of relations between “narrative,” “story” and “discourse” as they manifest in a particular contemporary museum: The Novium in Chichester, UK. This museum […]

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Balade Blanche: Putting New Museum Theory into Practice

Abstract. Over the past decade, museum administrators, curators, and staff have begun to recognize a subset of visitors that is starting to view their roles in museums differently. No longer is this new museum audience willing to accept curators’ authoritative narratives passively. Instead, this group of visitors seeks to share authority with curators. In response, some […]

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Design as Choreography: Information in Action

Abstract. Museum exhibitions are conventionally understood to be educational, meaning that they convey information to visitors. The content of this information is understood to include visual, auditory, and written media, as well as content from tactile, spatial, and social encounters. This article asserts that visitors also gain knowledge through bodily kinesthetic experiences while in the exhibition […]

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