James N Hutchinson BA (Hons) Fine Art, MFA Fine Art

Job Title:

Research Student


School of Fine Art



Proposal For A Collection
by James N. Hutchinson

Proposal For A Collection


James N Hutchinson

From Exhibition as Object to Object as Exhibition

Supervisor: Ross Sinclair

The starting point for my practice-led research project is to imagine the art object as a constellation, a thing for dispersal, an attempt to intervene in the historical narrative of the exhibition form at the point that the narrative is being established. I plan to develop a methodology for the production of an object that sees the moment of its interface with its desired public (eg in an exhibition) as a critical mid-point in its evolution, rather than the moment it becomes fixed.

In the fifteen years since Michael Brenson declared that we are living in the ‘curator’s moment,’ a self-referential discourse has developed around curating, the resultant praxis being a process of exploring and coming to terms with what Judith Rugg and Michele Sedgwick describe as curating’s own ‘unstable historical foundations.’ The curator now collaborates with artists and others as an exploration of his/her own field, developing increasingly sophisticated formal and temporal strategies, placing mediation at the forefront of production. As the exhibition has moved to occupy the space of the object within the recent historical analysis of art, the curator has so moved to occupy the role of producer.

As Hans Ulrich Obrist points out, exhibitions are not preserved or collected as artworks are - the exhibition’s use after it closes is as an event that happened in the past – a particular constellation that appeared at a particular moment. The objects contained within it are dispersed, either circulating through further temporary spaces of mediation, being sold to or distributed amongst visitors, going into storage, or being disposed of. My intention is to transpose the exhibition’s form of dispersal onto the object itself, and to examine how this affects the relationship between mediation and mediated.

James N. Hutchinson's CV

James N. Hutchinson's CV |

James' experience and exhibitions