Is “self-curation” the future of galleries?

As the world and art move on into the digitized future so does art literacy. Yet many still do not understand the numerous academic jargons that present themselves in art curation and history. I propose the new idea of “self-curation”, a way in which the artist curates their own work. Understandably, this creates a new issue of unfortunately creating more work for the artist. However, I argue that the artist is the only one with true knowledge of their own art.

In which the artist no longer is the artist, but an ‘artist-curator’. This brings forth questions to which that with digitization; are artists simply curating their work on social platforms already. When the artist creates a description of the work- they are creating a curation. Yet many have not gone through the efforts of education that we art historians have gone through.

As an art historian– I see no issue with this future; it brings accessibility to the gallery. It makes it easier to understand; an artist is more likely to show their true self. Rather than their work being curated- or co-curated with some parts of the excerpt removed due to sensibilities. It unlocks the true passion of the artwork and cuts down the cost of running a gallery institution.

self-curation
My works on JPG.store are pre-curated by myself with what could be wall texts in an exhibition.

Therefore, it could be argued that the artist has a much larger say in an exhibition with this in mind. They would be guided around the gallery and learn skills that could benefit their careers much more. Though this does add to the problem of what will curators do without their jobs. They simply would just be confined to historical museums or paid for when the artist does not want to self-curate their work.

If the artist’s work is shown, then why can’t the artist have entire control over how it is presented? These questions will possibly pose a challenge to the future of curation and institutions.

Let’s hope “self-curation” will become a movement or change in the institutions.

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