2019 CMA Conference: Call for Session Format Ideas

Dear CMA Friends, 

We hope you will be able to join us for the second biennial CMA meeting, which will be held in Santa Fe, New Mexico from September 26 – 28, 2019. We are structuring a dynamic three-day conference that will foster dynamic and diverse conversations in our field, while also directly engaging with the particular placement of Santa Fe. The first day of our meetings will be on Museum Hill, home to the Museum of Indian Arts and Culture/Laboratory of Anthropology and the Museum of International Folk Art, and the nearby School of Advanced Research will host an evening program. The second day will be partially hosted by the Institute of American Indian Arts, and the third and final day will be hosted by a Native community.

The theme of our meeting will be Museums Different, and to match our desire for an innovative and creative conference, we are seeking proposals for session structures that will set our conference apart. What do you wish academic conferences looked like? How can we break down the barriers between theory and practice through our collective conversations? Please send session format ideas, comments, or suggestions to cmaconference2019 [@] gmail.com by March 1, 2019.

The call for papers will be issued soon, and the deadline for those submissions will be May 6, 2019, with applicants being notification by June 3, 2019.  

CFP: Annual International Conference of Indigenous Archives, Libraries, and Museums

NYC to Commission New Work to Replace Controversial Public Monument

ArtForum International, January 3, 2019

“New York City is currently seeking artists to design a new artwork to replace the controversial statue dedicated to J. Marion Sims, the nineteenth-century gynecologist once hailed as the “father of modern gynecology” who was known for experimenting on enslaved black women. The monument, which was removed from its prominent location in Central Park, across from the New York Academy of Medicine, in April 2018, was the only public work that the city voted unanimously to take down.

The city was prompted to reevaluate all of its public artworks following the white supremacist rally that occurred in Charlottesville, Virginia, in August 2018. The event led to violent clashes between those protesting the removal of a statue of Confederate general Robert E. Lee and counter-protesters. The rally led cities across the United States to confront the racist and colonial legacies of their public monuments and sparked a national debate on the role of public art and the commemoration of controversial figures.”

More here.

CFP: Connecting and Disrupting African Collections in European Museums

How and why is Africa represented in European Museums? This panel will critique the cognitive infrastructures underlying the research, interpretation and display of African material in museums, and the intersections of these within present post-colonial legacies, including politics of race.

This panel will question how African pasts and presents are currently represented in European Museums. It will seek to expose and critique the cognitive infrastructures underlying the research, interpretation and display of African material in museums, and the intersections of these within present post-colonial legacies, including politics of race. Addressing the conference theme, the panel will ask how connections and disruptions in African presents and pasts are being represented, and explore new approaches that might disrupt established thinking and practices to make new connections for African collections.

This panel situates itself within present debates over the future of African collections in European museums. Ground is shifting, with recent announcements made by President Macron, the Benin Dialogue Group and the V&A concerning repatriation and long-term loans. Questions of consistency surrounding the repatriation of colonial-era looted objects encircle Berlin's Humbolt Forum as it prepares to open in 2019. A demand for the recognition of acts of colonial violence in the past, and their legacies in the present, lie central to these debates. This includes questions about the structural inequalities that frame ideas of legitimacy and appropriate justice. While moral and logistical debates about repatriation continue to rage above the curatorial level, this panel seeks to recognise the underlying colonial legacies and inequalities that continue to frame work with African collections today. What are the assumptions underlying how collections are presented, and who for? What are the tensions that permeate ideas of legitimate expertise? Can anything be done to disrupt them?

More here.

Position Announcement: Director, Logan Museum of Anthropology and Wright Museum of Art

Beloit College seeks a Director of the Logan Museum of Anthropology and Wright Museum of Art to begin July, 2019. The Director is responsible for the administration of the Logan Museum of Anthropology and the Wright Museum of Art and for working with faculty and museum staff to develop exhibits, programs, policies and plans, grant proposals, and manage resources. The Director supervises a small professional staff and reports to the Provost and Dean of the College. This is an twelve-month, full-time, administrative position with an adjunct faculty appointment in a relevant department.

The successful candidate will have a Ph.D, preferably in Anthropology and must have three to five years of prior administrative or curatorial museum experience, preferably in an academic museum. Working knowledge of current practices, theories, ethics, and policies in the field of museums is required, preferably in anthropology and art museums. Experience with NAGPRA compliance and working with source communities is preferred.

The incoming Director must be a strong leader and provide vision and strategic direction for the Logan and Wright museums. Knowledge of American Alliance of Museum accreditation desired. The successful candidate must demonstrate a commitment to diversity, equity, inclusion, as well as working with broadly diverse communities. They should demonstrate a  commitment to deconstructing the structural biases embedded in disciplinary boundaries. Evidence of ongoing interdisciplinary research and/or scholarly production that complements the existing strengths of the museums is preferred.

Teaching experience, broadly construed, is required. The successful candidate preferably has teaching experience at the undergraduate level. The Director will have adjunct faculty status, chair and teach Museum Studies, and cross-list in relevant departments. Demonstrated experience advising and mentoring students, cultivating and facilitating student research opportunities, and experience in object-based instruction is required. The Director will work with faculty and museum and development staff to develop, maintain, and promote the museums as excellent learning resources. Effective collaboration and strong communication skills are required.

For a complete job description, click here.

Because equity and inclusion are central to our students’ liberal education and vital to the thriving of all members of our residential learning community, Beloit College aspires to be an actively anti-racist institution. We recognize our aspiration as ongoing and institution-wide, involving collective commitment and accountability. We welcome employees who are committed to and will actively contribute to our efforts to celebrate our cultural and intellectual richness and be resolute in advancing inclusion and equity. We encourage all interested individuals meeting the criteria of the described position to apply.

Located in a diverse community close to Madison, Milwaukee, and Chicago, Beloit is a selective undergraduate liberal arts college that attracts students from across the United States and the world. The college emphasizes excellence in teaching, learning beyond the traditional classroom, international perspectives, and collaborative research among students and faculty. It is recognized as one of the Colleges That Change Lives. More information about Beloit College can be found atwww.beloit.edu.

To apply, submit a letter of application, resume, and contact information for three professional references toBCDirMuseums2019@beloit.edu. Review of applications will begin immediately and continue until the position is filled.

Call for Papers: Museum Ethnographers Group 2019 Conference

Everything we hope to do rests upon trust.  Ethnography displays rely upon mutual trust - between and among museum professionals, external partners, and diverse audiences.

How do we develop an environment of trust that enables, accepts and forgives the contradictions inherent in our displays? We display difference as a means of searching for commonalities; our displays seek to 'give voice' and yet often we 'speak for'.  Trust enables forgiving spaces and critical conversations around displays that aspire to present, represent, advocate, interpret and empower other ways of being.  An absence of trust risks displays that seem to misrepresent, (mis)appropriate, consume and disempower.

How do we encourage institutional trust in a time of post-truth politics?

How can museums deal with ‘toxic’ or contested objects in our collections that potentially undermine the institution's message? 

Recognising that a failure of trust causes actual harm, how can we nurture and maintain trust?

Can collaborative curation and conversation really effect change in the broader landscape of museum practice? Do we need to re-think the museum’s relationships with the state and funders? And with originating communities?

We welcome long and short papers that address these and related issues: long papers x 20 minutes, short papers x 10 minutes.

We also invite short papers on work in progress.

Please send a 200 word abstract and 100 word biography to the conference organiser, Robert Storrie, at RStorrie@horniman.ac.uk

Deadline for proposals: 31 January 2019

Call for Applications: Penn Museum Summer Internship Program

Apply now to gain experience in the museum field at a world-renowned academic institution. The Penn Museum offers paid and unpaid summer internship opportunities for undergraduate and graduate students, as well as recent graduates from any college or university. Penn Museum Summer Internships are made up of two parts: 1) placement in a Museum department for project-based work and 2) the weekly Museum Practice Program, where interns and museum professionals come together to learn about the Penn Museum’s collections, exhibitions, programs, and methodologies. The program consists of a lecture series, collections and gallery tours, a field trip to a local museum, and intern presentations at the end of the program.

*New funding opportunity*

The Penn Museum Diversity Stipends offer travel to and from Philadelphia, on-campus housing, and a $4,500 stipend for a 9-week/300-hour internship.


Museum Practice Program dates: June 3rd-August 2nd

You can find a description of the program, descriptions of each department listing, funding opportunities, and application requirements on theSummer Internship webpage or at penn.museum/studentopportunities

Questions? Email us at interns@pennmuseum.org


Activists Call for Town Hall to Address Controversy Over Whitney Museum Vice Chair's Ties to Defense Company

Artforum International, January 2, 2019

“Decolonize This Place is calling for continued action against the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York. The activist group organized a protest at the institution on December 9 after it learned that the vice chair of the Whitney’s board, Warren B. Kanders, is the owner and CEO of the weapons manufacturer Safariland that produced tear gas canisters used on asylum seekers at the US–Mexico border earlier this year.


The group is currently planning on holding a town hall at 1 PM on January 26, at a location that has yet to be announced, where individuals will be allowed to express grievances and help strategize on how to best confront the museum about its goal of removing Kanders from its board.

Kanders’s ties to the company, first reported by Hyperallergic in November, sparked outrage among the museum’s staff. In response, nearly one hundred employees signed an open letter, which denounced the institution’s failure to address Kanders’s business dealings and urged the Whitney to no longer accept funding from controversial donors.”

More here.