Past events
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27.10. – 28.10.2022

99 Questions Gathering

Two days with various artistic interventions and short impulse sessions
For more information click here

REIMAGINING THE MUSEUM

99 Questions at the Humboldt Forum combines different formats of dialogues, podcasts, workshop gatherings and residencies and raises questions on past and future museum practices, whilst reflecting on the historical and contemporary impact of colonialism.

With the opening of the exhibitions of the Staatliche Museen zu Berlin, numerous objects will be on display at the Humboldt Forum that arrived in Europe during the colonial period. These objects through their presence in museums represent the erasure of knowledge, languages and practices, and symbolise a context of injustice and violence, both in the past and present. The various 99 Question formats aim to question the values and foundations of museums, specifically ethnological museums, that bear strong colonial entanglements.

Together with various practitioners and thinkers, 99 Questions seeks to raise questions on shifting engagements on understandings of collections, representations, languages and epistemologies, forms of knowledges and community participation.  The combined formats aim to highlight ecologies of knowledges and establish a space to collectively process learning and transformation.

 

Participants in 2021 and 2022

99 QUESTIONS – DIALOGUES

99 Questions Dialogues is a monthly discursive and dialogical format, to which various panellists and discussants are invited. The events take place as a livestream and are then available as a recording on YouTube and our website.

 

 

Livestreams and Recordings

99 QUESTIONS – PODCAST

The 99 Questions Podcast offers the opportunity to delve deeper into the topics of the series with changing moderators and different guests. In different episodes, the guests address the connections between museums and colonialism, share personal experiences and discuss what curatorial practice and a world of tomorrow might look like.

The first five episodes were thematically based on the first five 99 Questions Dialogues and moderated by Feven Keleta. The mini-series ACCESS FOR WHO? was created as part of the 99 Questions Residency by Chao Taiyana Maina and Molemo Moiloa from Open Restitution Africa.
Also coming up: researcher and curator Aouefa Amoussouvi will be hosting the following five podcast-episodes on different ecologies.

 

99 Questions – Podcast

99 QUESTIONS – RESIDENCIES AND WORKSHOPS

99 Questions Residencies and Workshops are a space, alongside the other formats, for establishing interdisciplinary and sustainable cooperation. They intend to provision a capacity to, on the one hand, call attention to various topics from different perspectives and on the other institute a space for possible future engagements. Crucially the aim of the residencies is to establish a platform for interpersonal exchange, for discovering overlaps and consistencies between seemingly disparate (personal) histories and collective memories, as well as to open up a space for mutual learning on which forms and practices of common dialogue and ideas can emerge.

The digital and in-situ residencies are open to a wide range of individuals from various fields of disciplines. Fellowships are granted, but not limited to, artistic and (non)academic research, community engagement, crafts and further backgrounds or practices.

 

Open Restitution Africa
Open Restitution Africa
© “Access for Who?”, Open Restitution Africa (2022)
What the Algorithm doesn’t see / Access for Who?
Digital Residency: August 2021 – January 2022

“As the momentum behind restitution grows, many positions and controversies emerge. Too often, these are based on opinion, assumption and guesses. In cases where positions and controversies are based on actual knowledge of a certain issue, this knowledge is often specific, localized and anecdotal.”  from a presentation by Chao Tayiana Maina and Molemo Moiloa

In their residency the two founders of Open Restitution Africa, Molemo Moiloa and Chao Tayiana Maina look to begin a conversation on digitisation of African heritage collections. Through research and discussions, they attempt to unpack the necessary care and ethics required when seeking to digitise African heritage, particularly in the age of restitution. While digitisation is often considered a strategy for future oriented safe keeping, distribution and greater engagement, they ask – for who? And for what purposes? And are we making decisions about digitisation that ensure these objectives are met in ethical, equitable ways?

Taking into consideration the positions of practitioners across the spectrum of heritage, digital, intellectual property and museum work, they explore, and think together with their collaborators about the difficult questions that digitisation of African heritage brings to the fore. Furthermore, they will also look at the many propositions – some simple, and some more extended – to do this work better for the future.

 

The Nest Collective
Blossoms for Demethieu
© Jim Chuchu
Just Make Another One…
Digital Residency: November 2021 – April 2022

“As one distinctly dull task of decolonization labour is explaining imperial and colonial injustice to audiences with varying degrees of ignorance about the history of Western ‘engagements’ and ‘interactions’ with the African continent, the development of educational tools such as a game are not just a frivolous pairing of gaming theory with contemporary politics, but a useful tool in building alliances and dismantling structural ignorance.” from the concept of Jim Chuchu and Njoki Ngumi.

Games – whether digital or analogue – can be sites for introspection and action. Thus gaming can be understood as a tool for mutual learning and a space for the creation of joint experiments and empathy. On a narrative level, games may challenge and complicate poisonous intellectual, political and social positions around object return and repatriation to the places from which extractive acquisition occurred. Yet in using visual references from the past and present, they are also able to create alternative realities and utopias, that can act as a balm for societies that have been denied the privilege and audacity of shaping the world around them in their own image.

So can we build a better world by creating and playing games? The residency will engage with questions about the potential to (un)learn via digital or analogue games. Here, questions about narration and mediation come into play, as well as about design principles and visualisation.

While Germany just happens to be considered the home of modern board-gaming, The Nest Collective‘s Njoki Ngumi and Jim Chuchu will devote their six-month digital residency to researching on games and gamification as a way to engender different forms of engagement around particular sets of given information, allowing publics to engage with different materials in their own new ways, teaching themselves, and arriving at a variety of conclusions.

 

Contact

For questions and further information regarding any of the 99 Questions programmes, please contact [email protected].