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Di 30.01.2018


• Auditorium des DAM
Schaumainkai 43
60596 Frankfurt am Main


Architecture in Visual Culture, A Porous System, and Some Attempted Order: Beginnings of the M+ Architecture Collection

Shirley Surya

This talk is titled in response to the title of the lecture series as a way of expressing an embrace of this tripartite framework, but also a realisation of its limits in the building of M+’s architecture collection. Collection-building necessitates a disciplinary focus, a principled identification of subjects for acquisition, and a methodological order informed by the museum’s remit. Yet, under the conditions of a lack in historical research on regional architectural developments, the existence of fragments rather than complete archives, the vying for materials by nationalistically-driven collecting institutions, and the reality of an increasingly cross-mediated world, this talk aims to bring out the inevitable “gaps” in subscribing to the more ‘classical’ framework in how M+ builds its architecture collection. Atop shifting grounds, it takes on a more porous system of navigating between collecting for historical research and interpretive display, between the local and transnational, between the canonical and non-canonical, and between architecture and other disciplines.

Shirley Surya is Associate Curator, Design and Architecture, at M+, Hong Kong’s new museum for visual culture. As part of building M+’s permanent collection, Surya has researched and acquired works representing post-war design and architectural developments in greater China and Southeast Asia. She co-curated ‘Building M+: The Museum & Architecture Collection‘ (2014) and ‚Mobile M+: NEONSIGNS.HK‘ (2014), and contributed to ‚Incomplete Urbanism: Attempts of Critical Spatial Practice‘ (2016) and ‚Yung Ho Chang & FCJZ: Material-ism‘ (2012). She studied at the University of California, Berkeley, and London’s Royal College of Art. (543 characters)