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Title: The protection papers : Into the open and the Venice Architecture Biennale
Author: Levy, Aaron
ISNI:       0000 0004 2745 5486
Awarding Body: University of Leeds
Current Institution: University of Leeds
Date of Award: 2010
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In this dissertation, I argue that there can and should be an aspiration among those involved in art and architecture for ideological engagement and historical awareness. In the first chapter, I provide critical reflections on the exhibition Into the Open, the official representation in the US Pavilion at the 2008 Venice Architecture Biennale, based on my own experience as organizer. This section is essentially a case study that further explores ideological engagement in contemporary curatorial practice, and is motivated by a desire to render visible some of the questions and tensions that defined that exhibition after the fact. A similar archaeological impulse informs the subsequent Chapter, which offers historical perspectives on the United States' uneven engagement with cultural diplomacy. I do so in order to demonstrate that culture is never an incidental act, and that culture always carries ideological and political ramifications. This is particularly evident at the Venice Architecture Biennale, and for this reason a core component of this project is a working archive, which is found in chapter three. It contains a living history of that institution which seeks to recover its origins and historical trajectory through a series of interviews with past curators. It is accompanied by a dossier on cultural administration, which attempts to render visible the messy politics of the cultural production of Into the Open through a compilation of administrative and financial traces and residues. Throughout, I attempt to produce not just formal documentation or critical analysis but a series of particular performative interventions into our understanding of curatorial practice and the institutional compromises it inevitably entails. A persistent theme throughout these pages is that of entanglement, which is a theoretical concept as well as a practice of engagement. Accordingly, I conclude by offering a series of philosophical meditations. It is my hope that this research will serve as a starting point for a renewed discourse concerning the realities and possibilities surrounding contemporary curatorial practice
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available