Naomi Polonsky and Saskia Flower are two student curators at The Courtauld Institute of Art. They recently curated the exhibition ‘There Not There’ at The Courtauld Gallery along with the other students on the MA Curating the Art Museum programme. ‘There Not There’, which is on until 15 July 2018, brings together the works of twelve contemporary international artists from the Courtauld and Arts Council Collections. The exhibition examines the boundary between absence and presence, and explores themes of transition, loss and erasure.
Your secret art venue when you seek peace and quiet
The Barbican’s Curve is a wonderful place to see contemporary art in London without the hustle and bustle of other galleries. It is devoted to commissioning contemporary artists from around the world to make new, often site-specific works. In this intimate space you can discover all sorts of treasures, from a six-screen video piece by British artist John Akomfrah to a multi-media installation by French-Moroccan artist Yto Barrada.
The best food experience in an art space
The recently reopened Kettle’s Yard in Cambridge has upped its game not only by bringing in contemporary art, but also by opening a lovely new café. From gourmet sausage rolls to artisanal salads, you won’t go hungry!
A museum gift shop that you never leave empty handed
It’s impossible to walk past the Tate Modern gift shop and not be tempted to buy something. They have a fabulous selection of the latest art books and magazines, as well as perfect little gifts for people who have everything.
Your museum with a wow-factor
On a recent study trip to Vienna, we were totally bowled over by MAK (Austrian Museum of Applied Arts / Contemporary Art). It is built in Neo-Renaissance style, and its inner courtyard features magnificent fresco paintings and an ornate frieze. All of this forms the backdrop to displays designed by artists like Jenny Holzer and Donald Judd.
Please share with us a special personal memory related to a museum experience
We recently went to Tacita Dean’s exhibition, PORTRAIT, at the National Portrait Gallery. It included still life photographs and several 16mm films, many of which were of famous ageing artists like David Hockney and Claes Oldenburg, going about their daily routines. The highlight was definitely the final room – a breath-taking multi-screen installation showing footage of an elderly Merce Cunningham performing a piece titled STILLNESS. We had the place completely to ourselves. It was a truly special moment.