Beryl Graham, Sarah Cook – Rethinking Curating: Art after New Media

Beryl Graham

The MIT Press, ISBN-13: 978-0262013888, English, U.S.A., 2010
After fifteen years of recurrent and animated debates about the peculiarities of new media art, it is still almost always considered as inappropriate in terms of classic museum and collector standards. There is also the undisguised frustration of being snubbed by the majority of the contemporary art world. Here is the best chance to start to definitively solve this situation: share this book. It should be titled “Every Thing You Always Wanted to Know About Curating New Media But Were Afraid to Ask”. Graham and Cook, in fact, have not only founded the CRUMB always active mailing list on these topics, but have also organized countless initiatives and conferences in UK and abroad. What matters here is that they coagulated the accumulated experiences in three hundred pages, with a scientific methodology. The book is divided into two main parts: the first dedicated to defining the specificity of new media art, with plenty of real case studies, and its legacy to the history of art. The second is devoted to methods of curating new media art – also with an impressive amount of contextualized artworks and practices. Furthermore the book is written in a very clear style that makes it accessible to a wide public. The shared hope is that this book, and hopefully others following on the same lines, will be studied by new generations of curators, ones who will take over sooner or later, finally giving the art world a less nostalgic and “modern antiques” face than today, revamping its absolutely pivotal role in contemporaneity.