The very last CuMMA paper is now online!

The 29th CuMMA Paper ‘Unframing the Artist”— an interview with Salima
Hashmi by ViCCA student Uzair Amjad is out.


Salima Hashmi was one of the distance lecturers at ViCCA for the course “Authorship and Agency: Learning from the Middle ‘East’—Art, Micropolitics and Everyday Aesthetics”. To extend the dialogue and further understand her views on the formal evolution of the artist’s role in societies, Uzair met her in Lahore.

Please click here to read the interview and here to browse all CuMMA Papers.


You are warmly welcome to a “Curating as Anti-Racist Practice” book launch on Tuesday 29th of May at the Harald Herlin Learning Centre, Makerspace!


Natalie Bayer, Belinda Kazeem-Kamiński
and Nora Sternfeld (eds.)

A new book on the themes of curating, exhibition theory & practice

The anthology Curating as Anti-Racist Practice reflects upon museums and exhibitions from the perspective of postcolonial museology and critical migration and regime research. Beyond critical analysis, this collection of texts is about collecting strategies and forms of action that make it possible to think of curating as anti-racist practice. Using as springboards the intersections between social battlefields and curatorial practices, as well as a focus on agency, this book examines the relationality of struggles for and against representation. Therefore, the focus is on discursive strategies of resistance, contact zones and approaches to re-appropriation.

The book is published by the Department of Art in co-operation with University of Applied Arts Vienna.

The book will be presented by Belinda Kazeem-Kamiński and Nora Sternfeld (editors), Minna Henriksson, Ahmed Al-Nawas, Marianne Niemelä, Christopher Wessels (authors/contributors) and followed by Q&A

Tuesday, 29.05.2018
Harald Herlin Learning Centre, Makerspace
Otaniementie 9, 02150 Espoo



CuMMA paper #28 is published!

We are very happy to announce that “The Bright Lights of the Institution” — the 28th CuMMA paper is out!
The following compilation of texts is an attempt to approach the framework built for the CuMMA seminar ‘Theoretical Frameworks of Curating and Mediating Art’ in autumn 2016. The installation The Bright Lights of the Institution—A Framework for Being Together was created by Freja Bäckman, who is doing doctoral studies at the Department of Arts. This paper is published with a foreword by Nora Sternfeld and you are invited to read it here

Very welcome to join us for THE LAST CuMMA DS talk on April 17th!

It’s hard to believe it, but the 44th CuMMA Discourse Series will be the last one.
Let’s meet in the evening of April 17th for the beautiful talk by Paul Mecheril, recall the good old days and envision the future ones.

Talk with Paul Mecheril
What you fear is real? Logics of Affect and Power
17th of April, 18.00
Museum of Impossible Forms,
Kontula Shopping Centre, Keinulaudankuja 4 E, 2nd floor, lk 21, Helsinki

In migration discourses perceived threats are explicitly or implicitly called into being through texts and visual media representations. Methodologically I want to read this practice as constructed and staged scenarios of threat that develop their affective efficacy due to deep historical patterns of assertion and justification. The staging of threats can be described as a practice that represents an investment in the fight for a legitimate social order. I examine ‘the threat-scenarios’ as interventions whose meaning is defined by practices of real and symbolic in- and exclusions.


Welcome to the first CuMMA DS talk in 2018!

The 43th CuMMA Discourse Series lecture with writer and curator Sarah Rifky is happening next week, on the 6th of February, at MiF at 6pm. Please read about the talk below and follow the link if you’re curious to know more. See you soon!

Talk with Sarah Rifky
Acts of Institution. Act 1: Alignments
6th of February 2018, 18.00
Museum of Impossible Forms,
Kontula Shopping Centre, Keinulaudankuja 4 E, 2nd floor, lk 21, Helsinki

Following the uprisings in Egypt in 2011, a new wave of cultural institutions was founded that characterized the scene of revolution: initiatives of art in public space, curatorial projects and spaces for independent cinema and music. These initiatives-come-institutions can be identified or mapped through their strong affinities to each other, their sensibility of self-organization, and how they are globally perceived as emblems of hope and change. Many of these institutions share similar sources of support and financial sustenance. This talk sets up the framework of the present to delve into the genealogy of this support, which dates back to the 1950s, examining the competing cultural and political alignments that emerged with “acts of institution”; national and international entities establishing themselves in (and through) Egypt during the early cold war period and in the wake of non-alignment, and which (speculatively) draft a blueprint of the present.

CuMMA paper #27 is out!

Happy to announce that “The curator as arsonist” — an interview with a London-based curator and writer Vali Mahlouji is published! In the conversation with CuMMA students Mahlouji discusses his research, curatorial and educational platform Archaeology of the Final Decade (AOFTD), the questions it raises and the methodology it employs. In particular, Mahlouji speaks about the aspects of his curatorial practice that involve themselves with issues pertaining to power, radical democracy, conflict, activism, and art and cultural projects that evince social and political commitment.

Click here to read the interview and here if you’re curious to have a look at other CuMMA papers.


image: Shahr-e Qesseh (City of Tales), Bijan Mofid (playwright & director); from: Soheil Souzani, Mehdi Ali Beigi, Jamileh Nedai, Mahmood Ostad Mohamad, Rashid Kanaani, commissioned by the Festival, University Hall, 1968, courtesy Bijan Mofid Foundation; Courtesy Archaeology of the Final Decade.

Last CuMMA Discourse Series in 2017 on November 15th!

Welcome to join us for CuMMA DS lecture #42 with Barbara Steiner at MiF!

Talk with Barbara Steiner
On structures, frames and conditions in the field of the curatorial and the institutional
15th of November 2017, 19.15
Museum of Impossible Forms,
Kontula Shopping Centre, Keinulaudankuja 4 E, 2nd floor, lk 21, Helsinki

In her lecture Barbara Steiner will talk about the frames and conditions of artistic and curatorial production. This not only implies to deal with interdependencies and intricacies but also to find formats and forms, which show this in the project/exhibition. For her, curating exhibitions is more than just presenting objects; it comprises the presentation of constraints, conditions and spheres of interests – be they of political or economical nature. This approach aims at talking about the framework of artistic and curatorial work already in the programme of an institution and in the exhibition itself.

Please, follow the link to read more about Steiner and her projects, and see you next Wednesday!

Next CuMMA Discourse Series #41 with Susann Schuppli on November 8th!

Talk with Susann Schuppli
From Screen Burns to Oil Spills
8th of November 2017, 19.15
Museum of Impossible Forms,

Kontula Shopping Centre, Keinulaudankuja 4 E, 2nd floor, lk 21, Helsinki

CuMMA DS lecture with Susann Schuppli is happening next week already! Welcome!

You can read the abstract of the coming talk below and find out more about Schuppli if you follow the link:

Materials, whether naturally occurring, industrially manufactured, or computationally derived behave in essence as mediatic sensors that archive their complex interactions with the world, producing ontological transformations and informatic dispositions that can be forensically decoded and reassembled back into a history. I call these non-human entities and machinic ecologies material witnesses. Through the presentation of a series of cases and screening of clips this public lecture tries to account for the myriad ways in which the responsiveness of matter to external forces demands an acute and renewed sense of material and technical specificity in order to grasp the full political implications that such ongoing changes or interactions might yield.

CuMMA Discourse Series #40 with Ayse Güleç on October 31st at 18.00

Talk with Ayse Güleç
(Artistic) Practice Research – (Counter-)Narratives And Resistant
Knowledge Production
31st of October 2017, 18:00
Museum of Impossible Forms,
Kontula Shopping Centre, Keinulaudankuja 4 E, 2nd floor, lk 21, Helsinki

Welcome to join us for the next CuMMA DS with Ayse Güleç at Museum of Impossible Forms!

In her contribution Ayse Güleç would like to reflect on how ‘practice-based research’ can work as collective knowledge production in activist-artistic contexts through solidarity, cooperative and performative gestures and acts.
Güleç will take a look at the concrete example of the ‘Society of Friends of Halit’, a group of local and international activists and artists, who together with his family, commemorate the life and death of Halit Yozgat and concurrently, all victims of the NSU (National Socialist Underground).

If you’re interested to know more about Ayse Güleç and her talk, please click here and follow our blog for more news and updates!