Online seminar: Museums as Catalysts for Change

What role can museums play in the fight for a sustainable future?

  • 22 January 2021
  • Online-event.

What role can museums play in the fight for a sustainable future?

Malmö Art Museum and Expo Chicago invites you to a digital seminar that focuses on the roles and possible responsibilities of museums in relation to the global and local challenges we face today. How can we create socially, ecologically and economically sustainable societies for the future, together?

The museum as an arena for knowledge and learning is changing with an ever-increasing focus on visibility and communication. As culture-preserving and knowledge-forming institutions, they also relate to all types of change, social and political, but in what ways can museums take a more active role? How can museums act as catalysts for change? What methods are there for working with the present and the future – internally, in knowledge production as well as in relation to the public?

The seminar Museums as Catalysts for Change brings together experts from different fields of knowledge to discuss the potential of art institutions, how we can think and act more sustainably and what opportunities and challenges that await artists and institutions. By letting artists, curators, researchers and activists in several areas meet in dialogue, we hope to deepen the perspectives and formulate possible ways forward.

Museums as Catalysts for Change is part of the seminar series Alternate Assembly: Environmental Impact in the Era of Pandemic, presented by EXPO Chicago. Full program here for 21-23 January:


-INTRODUKTION (15.00-15.15): short interview by Tominga Hope ODonnell (NO) with Kirse Junge-Stevnsborg (DK)

-THE POTENTIAL OF ART INSTITUTIONS TODAY (15.15-15.50): Luise Faurschou (DK) and Lilibeth Cuenca Rasmussen (DK) moderated by Tominga Hope ODonnell

-PUTTING NOW ON THE AGENDA (15.50-16.25): Stephanie Cristello (US) and Michael Thouber (DK)

10 min break

-PERSPECTIVES ON PUBLIC PROGRAMMING (16.35-17.10): Laura Mott (US) and Ulrika Flink (SE)

-PUSHING SOCIAL SUSTAINABLE AGENDAS (17.10-17.45): Minna Henriksson (FI), Parvin Ardalan (SE) and Rahel Weldeab Sebhatu (SE)

-END REMARKS (17.45-18.00): Tominga Hope ODonnell

All seminars will be in English.

Wang & Söderstrom, Methanococcus jannaschii

Tominga Hope O'Donnell, Senior Curator of Contemporary Art, Munch Museum in Oslo

Kirse Junge-Stevsborg, director, Malmö Konstmuseum.

Luise Faurschou, curator, founder of ART 2030.

Lilibeth Cuenca Rasmussen, artist, Copenhagen.

Stephanie Christello, critic and curator, founder and editor of THE SEEN, Chicago.

Michael Thouber, director, Kunsthall Charlottenborg.

Laura Mott, Senior Curator of Contemporary Art and Design at Cranbrook Art Museum, Detroit.

Ulrika Flink, Artistic director of Konsthall C, Stockholm.

Minna Henriksson, artist, Helsinki.

Parvin Ardalan, journalist, activist och utvecklingssekreterare, project leader of documentation and freedom of expression at the Museum of Movements in Sweden

Rahel Weldeab Sebhatu, doctoral candidate, Global Politics at Malmö University.

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