THE MUSEUM IS NOT ENOUGH

“And I’m wary of the present”

Astria Suparak
THE MUSEUM IS NOT ENOUGH (Centre Canadien d’Architecture/Sternberg Press)
October 2019
http://www.cca.qc.ca/en/events/68009/the-museum-is-not-enough / http://www.sternberg-press.com/index.php?pageId=1937&l=en&bookId=830

The Museum Is Not Enough is the result of collective reflections on architecture, contemporary social concerns, institutions, and the public undertaken by the Centre Canadien d’Architecture in recent years. Fueled by the CCA’s continued questioning of the role of cultural institutions and the issues they face today, the book initiates conversations with accomplices who ask themselves similar questions.”

Topics addressed in this volume include the institution’s engagement with the present, the significance of the archive as a site for the production of new ideas, display strategies in architecture exhibitions, the need for mediation in art, and the impact of the digital in current museum practices.

Contributors:
Maria Lind (Tensta konsthall, Stockholm), Shirley Surya (M+ Museum, Hong Kong), Martin Huberman (Estudio Normal and Galería Monoambiente, Buenos Aires), Noura Al Sayeh Holtrop (Bahrain Authority for Culture and Antiquities), Mika Savela (Finnish Architectural Review), Mike Pepi, James Voorhies, Ruth Estevez, Astria Suparak, Damon Rich, Fredi Fischli, Stefano Graziani, Kieran Long (ArkDes, Stockholm), Ligia Nobre, Filippo Romano, Mark Wigley (Columbia University), Wilfried Kuehn, Kalle Lasn, Bernd Scherer, among others.

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DISTRIBUTION

THE MUSEUM IS NOT ENOUGH (2019)
Published in French as Le musée ne suffit pas
Editors: Giovanna Borasi, Albert Ferré, Francesco Garutti, Jayne Kelley, Mirko Zardini
Designer: Studio Jonathan Hares
Publishers: Centre Canadien d’Architecture/Sternberg Press
Release Date: October 2019

ISBN: 978-3-95679-518-3
Trim size: 24 x 31 cm
Extent: 200 color pages
Binding: Softcover

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LAUNCH EVENTS

September 23, 2019, 7pm
@ Circo de Ideias, Porto, Portugal

October 18, 9pm
@ SYNNIKA, Frankfurt am Main
With Mirko Zardini, Albert Ferré, and Nikolaus Hirsch

October 20, 9pm
@ Bar Laika by e-flux, Brooklyn, NY
With Giovanna Borasi, Jayne Kelley, and Irene Sunwoo

October 23, 7pm
@ La Central del Raval, Barcelona
With Mirko Zardini, Albert Ferré, Ethel Baraona Pohl, and Judit Carrera

November 2, 6pm
@ Hagiso, Tokyo
With Giovanna Borasi, Mirko Zardini, Albert Ferré, Mitsuyoshi Miyazaki, and Junko Iwabuchi

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PRESS


ARCHITECTURAL RECORD

Excerpt:
If the first-person voice is atypical for an institution, so is the introspective narrative, which is organized along “nine lines of thinking” that include phrases such as “I seek,” “I’m wary,” and “I could reinvent.” This “personification” of the institution suggests new ways of thinking of the museum as an actor rather than a place for archives and exhibitions. But the CCA has always surpassed the usual expectations of museums. Its 20th-century archives are open to visiting scholars and accessible for reference online, the CCA has enlisted numerous guest curators to stage exhibitions and events, and founding director Phyllis Lambert commissioned architectural photographs for the collection. So why is this not enough?

Some answers may lie in the commissioned conversations interspersed with the lines of thinking. These include Mark Wigley (professor of architecture at Columbia University) and Kieran Long (a British architecture critic and curator), who discuss the relationship of archival research to our changing world. Additionally, 12 inter­national curators and writers each select three recent architecture exhibitions that they think will be “relevant” for the discipline in the future. […]

Fear and anger are not easily conveyed in a museum, but they are motivations for change. Arguably, both the architecture museum and architecture are at critical points of transition, if not transformation. Sustainability practices, for example, are important, but they are neither easy to exhibit nor sufficient to overcome the climate crisis. Instead, as The Museum Is Not Enough clearly suggests, new thinking and new actions are required on all fronts.
– “A Cultural Institution Analyzes Its Goals,” Cynthia Davidson, February 11, 2020

THE ARCHITECT’S NEWSPAPER

Excerpt:
The quick but thoughtful writing draws out the complexities and contradictions of its subject matter. […] The book coheres as a multi-genre, multidisciplinary provocation for architects to be both more critical and more open to discovering vitality in unexpected places. […]

The Museum is Not Enough will appeal to architects and curators for its ability to transport readers into the backstage conversations at an institution not afraid to interrogate itself and its major subject. It is clear by the end that architects very often work like curators even if they like to imagine themselves producing iconic works of art. They set the stage for things to happen. And they face the same challenge as curators: museums have a history as rarified citadels of cultural value, separate from the messy life of society around them. The Museum is Not Enough shows that it doesn’t have to be this way. Intelligence and beauty emerge also from the mundane.
– “The Canadian Centre for Architecture gets reflective in The Museum is Not Enough,” Matthew Allen, March 12, 2020

NESS Magazine

Excerpt:
Through these diverse ideas, the book forms a picture of a critical now that not only represents the CCA but also extends beyond it. The publication leaves us asking ourselves, with the extensive trajectory of the CCA, what is enough? Whatever the answer may be, this publication illustrates that a space for reflection, exploration, and exhibition is necessary. […]

As these topics are explored, the collaborative “I”—that is a result of collective reflections on architecture, contemporary social concerns, institutions, and the public undertaken by the CCA in recent years—starts to take shape. Building on years of thematic investigations and of a continued questioning of the role of cultural institutions and the issues they face today, the book puts forward the CCA’s own positions and opens them up to a dialogue with designers, curators, photographers, publishers, and other institutions who ask themselves similar questions. Topics addressed in this volume include the institution’s engagement with the present, the significance of the archive as a site for the production of new ideas, display strategies in architecture exhibitions, the need for mediation in art, and the impact of the digital in current museum practices.
– “The Museum is Not Enough,” October 11, 2019

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