Between Memory and Museum: A Dialogue with Folk and Tribal Artists

Edited by Arun Wolf and Gita Wolf. Tara (PGW, dist.) $42.95 (152p) ISBN 978-93-83145-29-4
Thirty-eight artists from tribal communities (and one village) across India explore the role of anthropological museums in this thought-provoking book, which also showcases a variety of beautiful, opulent artwork and offers piercing insights and reimaginings that turn traditional notions of museums inside out. Some of the artists saw a museum as "a repository, a place for safekeeping objects and ways of being that would otherwise be lost," while other artists raised the contradictions of "safekeeping" and collective memory, reimagining the museum as a site for "engaging with the present and debating the future." The book's most ominous and intriguing question is "Who has the power to put whom in a museum?" The featured artwork is steeped in rich storytelling; much of it smoothly integrates aspects of modern life and technology with tradition folk elements. Color illus. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 12/14/2015
Release date: 10/01/2015
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