Exhibition Design and Interpretive Practice

Koç University, Istanbul
Department of Archaeology and History of Art

Works of art and design accrue meaning from the moment they are conceived and created. Within cultural institutions they participate in the construction of narratives, hierarchies, and ideologies. This course helps students understand the many different stories and meanings that are communicated with objects. It also offers critical reflection upon the methodologies that participate in the construction of meaning through objects. Students will develop a critical understanding of the history of interpretation practices and establish methods of reading and articulating the many different interpretations these objects have had over time depending differing cultural and historical contexts. Students then hone their own interpretive practice by developing their own curatorial thesis and interpretative plan for an exhibition. They conceive, realize and test an interpretive element within this framework.

This course examines current interpretive practices and offers students the opportunity to participate in creating interpretation for the gallery and museum contexts. Questions of material and form; models of attention and perception, the relationship between language and vision; the role of description in interpretation; and what constitutes learning through visual experience will be considered. Throughout the semester students develop an interpretive practice through a series of workshops, exercises, site visits and critical discussions.

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Exhibition Design by LOTOS Collective at Maison Folie Wazemmes – Lille, France.

Photograph by Camus Live Art.