On the Margins: Collection Responsibilities of the National Gallery

Aktivitet: Tale eller præsentationForedrag og mundtlige bidrag


Restitution has emerged as a topical issue within and around museums in recent years, not least because of calls for decolonization from artists, activists, scholars, and cultural workers. However, this concern has predominantly affected Western museums categorized as “museums of ethnography,” which possess collections of numerous looted objects from (former) colonial areas. In contrast, art museums are rarely involved in debates on repatriation and rematriation.

For this paper, I posit that if Western art museums possess few objects that ought to be restituted, are they obliged instead to collect and represent works of art related to (former) empires? To be more specific, does the National Gallery of Denmark (Statens Museum for Kunst, SMK) have an obligation to acquire representative collections of art from, for example, the Faroe Islands and Greenland? Both countries are part of the Danish Realm, yet their art histories hold a marginal role in the collection of the SMK. In the paper, I will refer to the existing collections and the juridical texts to discuss a possible answer to my question.
Periode24 maj 2024
BegivenhedstitelMuseum Why? : Practice, Agency and Knowledge in the Art Museum
SponsorerNovo Nordisk Fonden, Nordisk Kulturfond
PlaceringCopenhagen, DanmarkVis på kort
Grad af anerkendelseInternational