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Art experts, scholars gather for Mathaf, DI’s annual conference

Art experts, scholars gather for Mathaf, DI’s annual conference

Ailyn Agonia
DOHA
MATHAF Arab Museum of Modern Art and the Doha Institute for Graduate Studies welcomed art professionals and scholars to the opening of its second annual conference held at Mathaf on Monday.
The opening of the conference dedicated to the histories and trajectories of art schools was led by Mathaf Director Abdellah Karroum and Ismail Nashef, professor at the Doha Institute for Graduate Studies.
The event brings together scholars and art professionals from different countries to look at specific contexts in Algeria, France, India, Iran, Lebanon, Morocco, Nigeria, Palestine, Sudan and Tunisia.
The conference focuses on fine arts institutions as well as the marginal avant-garde groups that emerged in response to the multiple developments in art theories and innovative artistic practices around the globe.
It examines the modern “origins” of these institutions and initiatives, such as the establishment of colleges for teaching art, museums and cultural councils, all of which can be connected to the rise of the nation-state.
In his remarks, Karroum said the conference encourages connection between institutions, such as museums and universities, and what is happening in the world. He added that the event provides a platform for discussion on important issues in the industry.
Nashef commented on the transformations in the relationships between the institutions in the last few decades.
The opening day also featured a keynote lecture by Ranjit Hoskote, a poet, cultural theorist and curator, on the works of Ebrahim Alkazi. Hoskote has been acclaimed as a seminal contributor to the Indian art criticism and curatorial practice. He curated India’s first ever national pavilion at the Venice Biennale (2011).
It was followed by sessions on ‘Changing Art Schools: A Comparative Institutional Perspective’. Other topics discussed were ‘Building Institutions: Experiences, Critiques and Lessons’ and ‘The Fantasy of Art Education’.
The conference will continue until November 27.

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