Moving Out

Oregon Museum of Science and Industry

Dr. Mark W. Rectanus, University Professor of German and LCP creator, is yet another WLC instructor with a new book! Rectanus’s new book, Moving Out: Museums, Artists and the Translocal will be published soon by the University of Minnesota Press. Read on for Dr. Rectanus’s take on writing the book and what it’s all about.

“A collaborative project between the San Francisco Exploratorium and artist Harrell Fletcher titled “The Best Things in Museums Are the Windows” (2013) asked, “Where does the museum end and the outside world begin?” “The Windows” demonstrates how museums are conceptually and physically “moving out” by creating experiential pathways for discovery, e.g., by inviting the public to explore the land, water, and city surrounding the Exploratorium, as sites for demonstrations, workshops, and video presentations. Moving Out discusses a wide range of collaborative projects by museums and artists that are transforming contemporary museums by reimagining communities and spaces inside and outside museums.

Focusing on the pivotal role of artists’ projects, Moving Out examines how museums are using their “soft power” to shape global cities, urban culture, and the creative economy, while also contributing to debates on the environment, digital technologies, and global citizenship. At the same time, competing forces from outside museums (e.g., activist coalitions, local governments, and corporate interests) are seeking to shift or challenge the socio-cultural roles of museums. While many museums define themselves as global institutions, others are launching translocal projects that move across communities, cities, and geographies. For example, the performers of the group MAMAZA collaborated with the Petach Tikva Museum of Art in Israel to create ASINGELINE – a red line extending outward from the museum and through neighborhoods – that exposed the geopolitics of lines and boundaries in Israel. This project has been developed with other cultural institutions in England, Belgium, Burkina Faso, Nigeria, and South Africa. ASINGELINE, “The Windows,” and a wide range of case studies in Moving Out demonstrate how communities can play a key role in co-creating experimental projects with artists that extend and reimagine the conceptual borders and spaces of museums.”

Watch for Moving Out in libraries and bookstores near you very soon!