Nayia Yiakoumaki

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Nayia Yiakoumaki's MPhil/PhD Art research project

Curate the Archive, or Archive the Curator

My thesis entitled Curate the Archive, or Archive the Curator examines institutional archives and curatorial potential. Specifically it investigates the Archive as a source for curatorial information which shapes or influences the preconceptions and practice of a curator. For the grounding of the thesis I find it necessary to refer to a case study. The case study is the Whitechapel’s archive.

The particular archive is the most appropriate example as it houses material which have been produced by the Gallery and its collaborators for the last 104 years; it has not been set up according to stricted regulations decided by archivists. In fact the Whitechapel archive has been staffed with archivist only for a very limited time of one ot two years during its 100 years history. As a result, it has grown organically without restrictions providing for a curator, a very rich and diverse resource of material.