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Public Lecture – Jens Hoffmann

The Michaelis School of Fine Art, in association with the South African Jewish Museum and the Gordon Institute for Performing and Creative Arts, will present The Exhibition as a Dramatic Construction by Jens Hoffmann. This public lecture will take place at the South African Jewish Museum on Tuesday 24 September 2013.

In this presentation, Hoffmann will discuss a trilogy of exhibitions he curated for the CCA Wattis Institute for Contemporary Arts in San Francisco, all of which were based on iconic American novels: The Wizard of Oz (2008), Moby Dick (2009), and Huckleberry Finn (2010). The exhibitions explored the relationship between art, politics and cultural history through the lens of literature to reveal how elements such as time, process, movement and space can form the nexus of an exhibition, turning it into a dynamic set of juxtapositions, as opposed to a static environment in a neutral space.

Jens Hoffmann is an exhibition maker and writer based in New York. He is currently Deputy Director and Head of Exhibitions and Public Programs at the Jewish Museum in New York. From 2007 to 2012, Hoffmann was the Director of the CCA Wattis Institute for Contemporary Arts in San Francisco and prior to that Director of Exhibitions at the ICA in London. He has curated a number of large-scale exhibitions most recently the 9th Shanghai Biennial (2012) and the 12th Istanbul Biennial (2011).

Hoffmann is the founding editor of The Exhibitionist: Journal on Exhibitions Making, which he started in 2009. His most recent books include Ten Fundamental Questions of Curating (2013) and Show Time: A History of Exhibitions (2013). He has been a Visiting Professor at the Nova Academia De Belle Arti in Milan since 2004 and was Associate Professor at the Curatorial Practice Program of the California College of the Arts in San Francisco from 2007 to 2012.

This event is hosted by the Centre for Curating the Archive at Michaelis School of Fine Art, via the Honours in Curatorship programme, offered jointly by the University of Cape Town and Iziko Museums of South Africa, and is presented in association with South African Jewish Museum and the Gordon Institute for Performing and Creative Arts. The lecture will take place on Tuesday September 24 at 16:00, at the South African Jewish Museum, 88 Hatfield Street, Cape Town; and is free. Seating is limited and booking is required.