A THEATRE OF CULTURAL PRODUCTION
If the intention to build a Guggenheim museum in Helsinki is to exhibit ‘artistic process… connect the public with artists and their practices’, this is perhaps the key to an exemplary XXI century museum. By creating this ‘laboratory for visual culture’ the program is no longer just the exhibition of art—mostly artistic objects—but, more importantly, the exposition of the production of art itself. If the artist—producer—, the performance of production, and the supposed outcome are altogether exposed in the museum, in such a condition the museum is no longer just a mere showcase of perfectly curated artistic outcomes/objects, but a theater of cultural production.
One of the constant conditions of artistic productions today is the precarious and nomadic life of artists. That, along with widening up the idea of ‘artistic work’ during the XX and XXI century result into a blurred edge between artistic life, artistic production process, and artistic outcome—artwork—to an extent that we believe the three constantly collapse into one unsharp entity.
On the other hand, the growth of mega institutions, museums, galleries, etc
during the XX century and until today with the aim to support artistic processes
and art scenes in different countries, has created an extreme condition that
simply feeds into the same—growing—precarious mode of artistic life.
Here, in designing for the “next” Guggenheim Museum of the world, seems to
be a legible point to rethink this whole mechanism.
Design pedagogy, like the art pedagogy in the XIX and XX century, seems to
be the intention of the museums of XXI century. Guggenheim Helsinki in many
ways suggests a tipping point. First, in the current trends in design pedagogy,
and more importantly second, in how art and artistic processes are perceived and also practiced today.