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Presentation of the Manifesta Journal Reader

Presentation of the Manifesta Journal Reader (58-60 Galernaya Street).

The Manifesta Journal Reader is a book that compiles twenty-eight articles selected from the previous seventeen issues of the Manifesta Journal, one of the first international professional publications on contemporary curatorship. Initiated by Manifesta Foundation, Amsterdam, this extraordinary publication has been translated into Russian and published as a collaboration between the Faculty of Liberal Arts and Sciences (Smolny College), St.Petersburg State University, Manifesta Foundation and Calvert 22 Foundation.

The Manifesta Journal Reader is the result of a dialogue between the Manifesta 10 Heads of Publications and Education department and the Curatorial and Critical Writing MA discussing the possible opportunities provided by Manifesta 10 taking place in St Petersburg. These fruitful and inspiring discussions led to a reflection about the legacy of Manifesta 10, the need to leave a permanent trace and the role that Smolny College, St.Petersburg plays in shaping the future generations of curators and writers.

As part of its mission to help foster creativity and culture in Russia and Eastern Europe, Calvert 22 Foundation has been a longstanding supporter of Smolny College, and in particular its curatorial studies program. As such, The Manifesta Journal Reader represents an important next step in the foundation's mission to use cross-cultural communication to broaden theoretical awareness and to strengthen practical skills in the arts.

The collection of texts, based on the practices and theories of contemporary curating, is edited by Viktor Misiano, co-founder of the Manifesta Journal with Igor Zabel, and former Manifesta Journal Chief Editor, critic, and curator, in collaboration with Nataša Petrešin-Bachelez, current Manifesta Journal Chief Editor and the support of Virginie Bobin, former Associated Editor.

The Manifesta Journal Reader will provide a solid theoretical body of articles to reconsider the meanings and the effects of curatorial practices today focusing in the first part on the theoretical foundations of curating and formulating a grammar and manual of contemporary curatorship in order to move in the second part on to urgent (geo)political, humanistic, instigating and controversial potentialities.

The selection of the articles reflects the evolution of the professional figure of the curator and curating since 2003, when the Manifesta Journal was founded with the subtitle "Journal of Contemporary Curatorship" to nowadays, shifting the focus "Around Curatorial Practices".

It is envisioned that The Manifesta Journal Reader functions as a comprehensive textbook for future Russian curators, comprised of a wide-reaching sequence of both theoretical and pragmatic articles on contemporary artistic and curatorial practices written by outstanding international curators and intellectuals, including Russian thinkers such as Viktor Mazin and Viktor Misiano but also international thinkers like Mary Anne Staniszewski, Carlos Basualdo, Rasha Salti, Cuauhtemoc Medina, John Akomfrah or Fatima El-Tayed.

The publication is produced by Manifesta Foundation, Amsterdam in collaboration with the FLAS Master of Arts Program in Curatorial Studies, a new dual degree MA program that is developed by the FLAS together with the Center for Curatorial Studies at Bard College. This Program is committed to enhancing students’ ability to participate in professional activities and to improving their interpretive and critical thinking and writing.

24 october

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