Precarious Improvisation: The Past and The Present, maybe The Future | WCSCD 2020/21 Annual Lecture Series

The curatorial program What Could/Should Curating Do is proud to be continued in 2021 with public program through lecture series

The eighth talk in the 2020/21 series is titled:

Precarious Improvisation: The Past and The Present, maybe The Future

by Zairong Xiang

Date: March 17, 2021
Time: 12:00 pm Belgrade / 10:00 pm Melbourne / 07:00 pm Shanghai / 6:00 am New York
Registration: Link

One of the most widely used tools for survival by the improvised majority of the world is that of the quick-fix or make-shift, be it jugaad in India, gambiarra in Brazil, or to some extent shanzhai in China. These are at once embedded in traditional space-time and specific to the condition created by neoliberal global capitalism. Not merely a socioeconomic and anthropological phenomenon of improvisation, quick-fix methods across the world emerge from an onto-epistemology of profound connectivity of things and an ethics of pervasive permissibility. In this lecture, we will look at different registers of improvisation anchored in artistic practices and critical and curatorial reflections, from quotidian knowledge to ingenious improvisation, from communitarian politics to capitalist appropriation; and discuss what lessons can be learnt (both from and against) these theory-practices, especially in the context of an all-exposing pandemic.

About Speaker

Zairong Xiang

Zairong XIang is Assistant Professor of Comparative Literature and Associate Director of Artat Duke Kunshan University. He is author of Queer Ancient Way: A Decolonial Exploration (punctum books, 2018). Chief curator of the “minor cosmopolitan weekend” at the HKW Haus der Kulturen der Welt (2018), he is also the editor of its catalogue minor cosmopolitan: Thinking Art, Politics and the Universe Together Otherwise (Diaphanes 2020). He is co-curating the 2021 Guangzhou Image Triennial tougher with the Hyperimage Group and is working on two projects, respectively dealing with the concepts of “transdualism” and “counterfeit” in the Global South especially Latin America and China. He was Fellow at the ICI-Berlin Institute for Cultural Inquiry (2014 – 2016) and postdoctoral researcher of the DFG Research Training Group minor cosmopolitanisms at Potsdam University(2016-2020). All his writings could be read here:

The lecture is hosted by KHiO in collaboration with the curatorial program WCSCD.


WHAT COULD/SHOULD CURATING DO? (WCSCD)  was initiated and funded in 2018 in Belgrade as an educational platform around notions of curatorial. From 2020 WCSCD started to initiate its own curatorial inquiries and projects that should unpack above -mentioned complexities keeping educational component as a core to the WCSCD.
The WCSCD curatorial program and series of public lectures have been initiated and organized by Biljana Ciric.
WCSCD 2020/2021 public program series has been done in collaboration with Division of Arts and Humanities, Duke Kunshan University and they co-stream all public lectures. 
Strategic media collaboration is done with Seecult and they will co-host all public lecture series. 

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previous lectures

Lumbung | What is The Use? Needs and Means of Making Biennials Under Pandemic | Practices of Care: On Rehumanization and Curating | Where is the body of the curator? | From steirischer herbst to Paranoia TV: one festival reinventing itself | Kalokagathia: On the Possibility to Think Together the Aesthetical and Ethical in Curating | Reimagining the museum


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