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In the Shadow of the State: Collecting Performance at IMMA and Institutions of Care in the Irish Context

Castriota, Brian; Walsh, Claire; (2023) In the Shadow of the State: Collecting Performance at IMMA and Institutions of Care in the Irish Context. In: Hölling, Hanna and Feldman, Jules Pelta and Magnin, Emilie, (eds.) Performance: The Ethics and the Politics of Conservation and Care, Volume I. (pp. 147-168). Routledge: London, UK. Green open access

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Abstract

This chapter presents a set of ideas and questions around collecting and care in relation to a body of performance-based artworks newly acquired by the Irish Museum of Modern Art (IMMA), the first works in this medium to enter its collection. It focuses on the acquisition of The Touching Contract—a collaborative performance-based artwork by artists Sarah Browne and Jesse Jones that confronts the reach of statehood from the perspective of the female body—in relation to the historical specificities of IMMA as a national collecting institution established within Ireland’s postcolonial context, and against the backdrop of the highly contentious legacy of institutions of care in Ireland. Given the social and political specificities of The Touching Contract and the strong desire by both artists for it to be understood as a work with a distributed and delegated authorship and its own ethics of care, this chapter details how the principles embedded in the work guided our collaborative and slow approach to its musealization. As this work entered the IMMA collection in parallel to the development of our acquisition policy and processes around collecting performance, this chapter discusses the ways in which the acquisition challenged and reconfigured sedimented thinking and practices around acquisition, ownership and care.

Type: Book chapter
Title: In the Shadow of the State: Collecting Performance at IMMA and Institutions of Care in the Irish Context
ISBN-13: 9781003309987
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.4324/9781003309987-10
Publisher version: http://doi.org/10.4324/9781003309987-10
Language: English
Additional information: This chapter has been made available under a CC-BY-NC-ND 4.0 license
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS > Dept of History of Art
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10185131
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