Objects, Storytelling, Memory and Living Histories: Curating Islamic Art Empathically in an Era of Trauma and Displacement
The recent global surge of public- and museum-initiated interest in Islamic art has been interpreted broadly as having a direct correlation with diplomatic imperatives. Since the onslaught of the so-called migrant crisis, German institutions, in particular, have sought to socially engage refugees with the existing collections of Islamic arts and artefacts in Germany. But how can museums showcase and contextualise the arts of Islamic lands across time and space, in a way that is attentive to the traumatic experiences of displacement, migration and forced exile? In assessing various integrationist and assimilationist discourses, this chapter seeks to examine the gravity and consequences of museums’ pivotal role in providing an empathic and dignified space in society, where it is otherwise absent.
KeywordsIslamic art Curation Empathy Exhibitions Storytelling Memory Living history
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