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Decolonize the Museum: Utopia?

Cristina Freire, PLAS Visiting Research Scholar and Visiting Professor

March 13, 2019 · 12:00 pm1:20 pm EDT · 216 Aaron Burr

Program in Latin American Studies

In the history of Brazil, the colonial wound is based on two major violences: the indigenous ethnocide and the black diaspora. As an optical instrument at the service of modernity, the museum of modern art in Brazil has made invisible these processes of coloniality. However, some examples of past intellectual inconformism bring to the present the defense of the popular in education and in art. They are unrealized or suspended projects, such as Lina Bo Bardi’s Museum of Popular Art, Mario Pedrosa’s critical writings concerning the Museum of Origins and the Pedagogy of Freedom by Paulo Freire. These ideas could not be fully realized in their space or time of emergence and remain as indexes of interrupted histories that reappear in the work of some contemporary artists and exhibition installation projects.

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