HELENA RECKITTSupport Acts: Contradictions of Curating and Care
From the withdrawal of state funds for cultural projects, to the precarity of life under late capitalism, where care is treated as an infinitely exploitable resource, the crisis of care has become a key preoccupation in the art world. Artists and curators attempt to make visible the unseen and under-valued labour and relationships on which their activities rely. Activists agitate for policies to improve labour conditions in the notoriously unregulated artworld. To compensate for the lack of care they routinely experience, cultural workers establish structures of support and mutual aid. Reviewing some of these artistic, institutional, curatorial and activist initiatives, Helena Reckitt highlights the political conditions under which they operate and asks how care in the contemporary arts can be reconsidered, revalued, and more fairly distributed.
Helena Reckitt is a curator and researcher with an interest in feminist and queer art, theory, and collectivity. She is Reader in the Art Department, Goldsmiths, University of London, and editor of the books Art and Feminism, Acting on AIDS, and Sanja Iveković: Unknown Hero, A Reader. She has held curatorial and programming positions at institutions including the ICA, London, Atlanta Contemporary Art Center, and the Power Plant in Toronto. In 2015 she initiated the Feminist Duration Reading Group which meets monthly in London to explore under-known feminisms from outside the Anglo-American canon.