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Events/ Ongoing Programs/ MetSpeaks/ Symposia/ White Cube / Black Box: The Universal Museum and the Digital Age, a Virtual Symposium for Rayyane Tabet / Alien Property

White Cube / Black Box: The Universal Museum and the Digital Age, a Virtual Symposium for Rayyane Tabet / Alien Property

Join artists, researchers, and art professionals for a two-day symposium that uses the exhibition Rayyane Tabet / Alien Property as a starting point to challenge the concept of the universal museum—a place to see the whole world under one roof—and its relationship to material and digital cultural heritage. Panel discussions invite participants to reconsider the themes of the exhibition in light of the many social and political movements that have swept the globe since it opened in October 2019. 

Panelists also explore the concepts of the White Cube, the modern gallery and museum space, and the Black Box, the digital and physical spaces outside of it, in tandem. In computational terms, the Black Box represents the unknown: a space where algorithmic design makes a certain prediction. Participants use these concepts to think about how digitization, copyright, and open access collections can extend geopolitical, social, and class inequities into the digital age. Seemingly independent movements like #DecolonizeTheMuseum, #DecolonizeThisPlace, and #BlackLivesMatter have intersected and accelerated the need to ask and act on a question: What ethical roles and responsibilities do museums have to tell stories, acknowledge power, and repair histories?

The symposium is organized and moderated by Saima Akhtar, Kristine Khouri, and Andrea Wallace

This live event takes place on Zoom. Free, though advance registration is required. Register at the links below:

Day 1: Tuesday, April 27, 2021, 1–3:30 pm
Day 2: Wednesday, April 28, 2021, 1–3:30 pm

The symposium will also be recorded and available to view after the live event.

Listen to a conversation about Rayyane Tabet / Alien Property with the artist and exhibition curators.