Interview With Huang Du
專訪策展人黃篤


INTERVIEWED AND TRANSLATED BY 採訪翻譯 x BOWEN LI 李博文

黄笃在工作室中。摄影:和崴

ART.ZIP: You have discussed the role of the curator frequently. On one occasion you mentioned Klaus Biesenbach’s – chief curator at large at the MOMA, director of MOMA PS1 – background as a doctor, and Yuko Hasegawa’s – chief curator of Museum of Contemporary Art Tokyo – education in law. This professional-versus-the-amateur problem is related certainly to the apparently simple but quite subtle question of interiority and exteriority. Bernard Stiegler’s recent talk in China also involved this, the idea of the amateur – not to mention also that this important philosopher was once a bank robber. But artist-curator is perhaps more peculiar an identity. An artist is in the art world, by definition, but stays from the curator in an unique, dynamic and sometimes tense relationship. But before discussing your own practice, and the identity of the artist-curator, I would like to first ask you to share with us your view of the current situation of the curator in China today.
HD: It is rather complex, the present situation of the curator in China. The whole of China, with all its politics, economy, and culture is still in a time of substantial transition. Naturally, the structure of the curatorial is effected. The curators of the older generation have accomplished their historical missions, finished really important tasks. I think, the mission of the curatorial practices in the 80s and the 90s are basically finished. In the new millennium, with the popularization of the education of the curatorial, new curators emerge. But this does not mean that there is a great distance between the two, or one is better than another, that is not what I meant. I am pointing out that, with the social restructuring, there is a discursive change in the structure of the curatorial practice as well. The curatorial experience is of course linked to the change in society. For instance, the so-called older generation, including Li Xianting, Gao Minglu and their groundbreaking ’89 exhibition – an important conclusion of the art of the 80s. At that time, curatorial practices were very different; they mostly curate as critics or theorists.

I also think that, the later practices of this generation were still to a greater extent related to the experience of the 80s. Curators like Fei Dawei and Hou Hanrou, on the other hand, with their overseas experiences, somehow distanced themselves and their experiences from the domestic situation. They have the international perspectives, and a good grasp of global culture, politics and theories. But their positions also posed a big problem: from the end of the 80s to the end of the 90s, in this decade, the decade of post-colonialism, when people used immigration culture, heterogeneity, the identity of the other or the idea of difference to resist Eurocentrism, artists like Huang Yongping, Chen Zhen, Cai Guoqiang and Xu Bing among many others were powerfully presented. But, the historical significance of this group of artists is dimming. This, on the other hand, is related to the global change. That is, it is not only a change within the European, American society, but is also a global transition. The rise of the BRICs in the new millennium has changed the global economic, political order, also the cultural order. Therefore, the art that is dependent upon post-colonial culture and theory is dimming as well. This is a structural change in the society. The latest situation that is happening in recent years is, there has been a rise of young curators with art history background or artistic practice background – Qiu Zhijie is at once an artist and a curator; He Guiyan, Lu Yinghua, Fu Xiaodong, Bao Dong and Cui Can Can studied art history. They are energetic, active, motivating young and new art, especially the artists born in late 70s or the 80s. This is the general situation of the curator in China.

ART.ZIP: In a conclusive statement as such, there is already a very interesting proposition: curator is therefore considered a motivating force, not a force that follows; a curator leads, and does not simply or only conclude or assess the event retrospectively after its happening.
HD: I do think that curatorial practices should not only follow, but should indeed lead and look forward. Harald Szeemann, for instance, curated the Live in Your Head: When Attitudes Become Form in 1969; Jean-Hubert Martin curated Magiciens de la terre in 1989; Achille Bonito Oliva and the Transavantgarde movement etc. – these are all very meaningful examples. So artistic phenomena are supported by theories or other foundations. Martin critiqued Eurocentrism; Oliva attempted finding force unique to Italian art, traveling in time and space, integrating his understanding of the Italian poetics, by looking back to medieval Italian art. These are the instances where the curators utilized their sharp thinking. Other examples include the rise of Japanese Gutai, Mono-ha, and the rise of Monochrome in South Korea, et cetera.

In China, for either constructing artistic phenomena or for proposing meaningful intellectual trends, we need supports from theoretical foundations and from art historical or genealogical foundations. Otherwise, we will not be able to determine the axis of art, because intuition alone will not suffice. Intuition is certainly important, but reasonable, logical deduction and judgement are necessities. This is related to the whole cultural system, genealogy of knowledge, including thinking, context, such as Chinese history and the structure of Chinese culture. So, Chinese curators have to have wide perspective, and solid foundation of knowledge, such as art history, politics and sociology, to be able to put art in a large structure and investigate it, and not just reading art in its own limited, narrow realm. Only in such a way can a deep reading of art be meaningful, can one start to understand the happening and production of art. For instance, the the birth of Mono-ha is closed connected to the post-war development of Japan in the late 60s. This is very much similar to the development in China in recent years, with events such as the Beijing Olympics and the Shanghai World Expo etc. Japanese culture was following blindly European and American culture, so the emergence of Mono-ha was in a way the Japanese response to the Western culture, bringing art back to an aesthetics and philosophy that is unique to Japan, such as the philosophy of Ktaro Nishida and Zen Buddhist philosophy, et cetera. So, though some people consider Mono-ha similar to Italian Arte Povera, American Minimalism, after a close reading one will realize that Mono-ha has a really unique aesthetics and taste. If Arte Povera could be understood as very much sociological, Minimalism as absolute formalism, Mono-ha is very different, in that it stresses the natural materiality, state and relations of things, inseparable from Zen Buddhism, the spaces of temple and garden, and Shintoism. A curator could go deeper and more accurate, putting art back to its structure and try to understand it from there.

ART.ZIP: The feature of the issue is inspired by an artist-curator’s dissatisfaction regarding the curator. She thinks that curator as such cannot do justice to artworks. What do you think?
HD: I think that artist-curator’s dissatisfaction regarding curator as it is known today, is not unlike the fact that critic, artist, institution and curator are all enemies to each other. Curator and artist can never be a unity, so in a certain sense curator is the artist’s enemy – antagonistic, because there is no absolute fairness and justice in an exhibition. A curator is in a way like a director; a film cannot satisfy everybody, and roles cannot be equally important. So there has to be order in an exhibition. Venice Biennale for example, cannot grant every artist the same amount of space, and equally important position.

In fact, some curatorial practices are manifestations of power discourses. Of course, we criticize this power discourse at work, but this sort of system of art is necessary in the society. Curator’s power and responsibilities are granted, given; whether they are in good use or not is another question. Every individual has his/her own preference, taste, aesthetic judgement, so naturally no exhibition could be perfect. Monumental exhibitions are criticized as well, such as the Magiciens de la terre. A lot of people though the curator brought in an excess of non-art objects, and made it improperly. Beneath this was in fact a struggle of power discourses.

Personally, I think that curator and artist-curator are different in terms of judgement and perspective: artist-curators excel in judging the artistic subject: attention to details, sharp understanding, brilliant grasp of the material and the space in the production of art, et cetera. But they are also limited, in that they easily pay too much attention to the artistic subject and rely heavily on personal preference. Relatively, curator could better balance the dialectics of the micro and the macro, the whole and the part of an exhibition, assimilating the trends into the structure of the cultural development, and can effectively lead the development. There is a fine line between the two really. But it could also be the difference between the metaphysical and the physical in nature. Curators are stronger in terms of the thinking and the theorization, thinking deeper in sociology, politics and cross-disciplinary problems; artist-curators perhaps care more about materiality and the the art itself. Regarding power struggle, artist-curators have their own preferences as well, so in fact is caught in another power game. It is not that an artist, after becoming a curator, is not equipped with power. It is equal in this aspect.

Artist-curator was a very trendy idea from the late 90s to the beginning of the new century. In this decade many artists have curated shows, such as the famed Gabriel Orozco, Maurizio Cattelan, Cai Guoqiang and Qiu Zhijie. When Cattelan was working on the Berlin Biennial, he collaborated with Italian curator Massimiliano Gioni, which is very smart. At that time, many artists in the United States also were focusing on developing curatorial practices. I think artist-curator has a unique vitality, but has not been immensely influential in fact. Compared with professional curators, artist-curators are lacking in degree the theoretical and the intellectual. This is also proved by the Documentas and biennales in the last two decades.

Speaking of “amateur curators”, one example is, as we have already mentioned, Klaus Biesenbach who established the Berlin Biennial, and is at the moment leading MOMA and PS1. Although he was not professionally trained, I believe the German education system has granted him a friendly art environment in which he was able to develop a brilliant aesthetic perception. Yuko Hasegawa was previously in law, also; so it is not that only those professionally trained could become a curator. Everybody has the potential to be one, but there are of course standards to meet. The standards mean the abilities of the curators: the ability of knowledge, of fundraising, of establishing relationships with the authorities, institutions, and that of establishing one’s self et cetera. So curating is really a comprehensive, social job.

ART.ZIP: We perhaps can even compare the role of the curator with those found in sister arts, such as the role of the film producer, or director.
HD: In a way, yes, curators are like directors. It is not a very precise analogy, but regarding each role’s functions, it works. Casting – inviting artists to participate; fundraising, writing exhibition proposals; locating space for shooting, locating space for exhibition in museum or other venues… the processes are similar, they just function differently. Film industry has to be populist, closely related to box office, commercially influential; art, on the other hand, especially those managed by serious curatorial practices, is still to a large extent non-commercial. This includes biennial, documenta and many other academic exhibitions etc.

ART.ZIP: In recent years, also emerging are concepts such as “super-curator” or “celebrity curator”. Do you consider this problematic? Many labeled this way were not professionally trained, but are very much exposed to medias and press as the focus of an exhibition.
HD: Again, it is a question of the role of the curator and his/her influence. I think there are at least three types of curators: super-curator, who immediately becomes the focus of any exhibition, with artworks and artists supporting his ideas by ways of illustration; the second kind of curators work in parallel with the artists, with their relationships more marked by an equality. Through a “conspiracy” they get to realize a certain balance; the last kind of curators pushes the artists to the foreground, with the exhibition revolving around the artworks. Biennials today tend to secure a “super-curator” or “celebrity-curator”, in a way that is perhaps not unlike branding, trying to maintain influences. This is the first type at work; in fact a lot of curators are very powerful, a bit too much like a director. But I think the most important thing is still the construction of the exhibition: whether or not an exhibition can be inspiring, can be exterior to our experiences, can be intriguing, be it in the system of art or in the sociological. There are so many shows today, in which many are disappointing. This requires reflection.

ART.ZIP: Also we are seeing a number of philosopher-curators today, such as Boris Groys, Slavoj Zizek, and Wang Minan et cetera. They were trained in philosophy or literature criticism, and have been working in these fields for decades. What is your take of this?
HD: Curating is really a open task, but is also a complex social/cultural project. Curating could be very subtle. We have talked about a number of great thinkers today; they explain themselves and their shows very well. For instance, Jean Francois Lyotard curated a great show in the Centre Pompidou. But academic curators are also limited, because curatorial practices involve also close readings of the language of art itself, the logic of the concept, its relations, and involve dealing with the relationships between works, between works and spaces, and between works and contexts. This could be very subtle: it is a challenge for the curators to make the arrangement reasonable, interesting, and surprising. The making of an exhibition does not only entail writing a good article, but also entail achieving a certain visual effect, and be inspiring. A simple comparison could be: the museum(or any other space) is the body, the artworks are the clothes – how to dress well depends on the person’s(curator’s) taste, or (judgment)wisdom. An academic curator might fail reading the spatial subtlety of the works, especially the spatial relationships. For instance, shall I put a work in the corner, in the air, or in the middle, so that it can respond actively to other works nearby? It depends on experience, and is hard to formulate, because all spaces are different. It is again like shooting a film: the worst way is the old way, and constant renewal and dealing are the right solution. Shipping an exhibition from the UCCA to the MOMA will have to be a challenge, not merely a question of logistics.

ART.ZIP: Are you following any international curatorial movement or trend at the moment?
HD: To me, if there is any movement or trend in the global curating, one still has to find it in the biennials and the Documentas. However, compared with those in the 80s or 90s, the biennials and Documentas today are not that academic, leading and influential anymore. Besides these exhibitions, in recent years I have been following closely the exhibitions in the BRICs nations, and the ecological environments of Asian art, because this area is very lively. As it is well-known, the global financial crisis influenced the whole of Euro American world, and by extension the art within. The global is moving towards the East – China, specifically. But of course the Chinese society has its own problems, still in its development, not yet reaching goal. But at a very high speed already. I experienced Beijing in the 90s: exhibition of contemporary art was illegal, so the exhibitions were only for “internal reference”, or the police would come. Now, in China, with the proliferation of biennials, galleries, private collections and the whole of the art market (including art fairs and auction houses), it is already vastly different from a decade ago. This should not be underestimated. In the future, China might see an even greater development, because the whole society is building a complete system, while the institutions are developing themselves. Also there are unpredictable factors: the tax-free zone in Shanghai is a new attempt, for instance. This involves many things, including the cultural industry. Also, a better legal system is very important as well, this will lay a solid foundation for the further development of Chinese art, clearing things that were previously oblique.

ART.ZIP: What are you working on at the moment?
HD: In 2014 I curated in Monaco the exhibition On Sharks and Humanity. It lasted for half a year, and was very international in nature. It will tour to Moscow and open on the 28th of May there, and will tour to the National Museum of China in September. In October I will be sitting on the international judge panel for the Florence Biennial. Presently, I am working on curating an exhibition that involves young artists from both China and South Korea in Jinjihu museum in Suzhou. I was invited to curate the Flagship Exhibition Hong Kong 2015, following previous curators such as Eugene Tan and Fumio Nanjo. I was also invited to act as the artistic consultant for a massive Chinese art exhibition that involves 9 museums in the 8 cities of Ruhr area in Germany. That’s about it for now.

Telling from my personal experience, curatorial practices have its own problems. From the outside it seems China is very rich now, but curating an exhibition involves many things and is therefore still very much limited. Funding is difficult, but funding is the most important thing, related to basic necessities such as installing, technical support, logistics, and creation et cetera.

The premise is of course passion and dedication. You have to love your job, and you have to know it well as well. You can only love one thing if you know it well, otherwise the love could be superficial. Only can you be passionate about it after knowing and understanding clearly the art. You have to pay attention to the state of the works, that is, its means of production – how to use and transform the meaning of materials, works in spaces and in contexts. I am still learning, watching closely the art of the realms unknown to me. I still need to learn about many things, such as art in India, middle Asia, Latin America and Africa. For instance, I curated in 2012 a unit called Image Anxiety in the Photo Espana. Although it was successful, during the process I got to learn my limits. But this is also what is intriguing about curating: meeting the unknown, facing challenges and difficulties, and constantly try to overcome and go beyond.

2007年《首届今日文献展》现场及王晋雕塑“骨”2

ART.ZIP:您在過往經常討論策展人身份的問題。您提到美國MOMA策展人克勞斯·畢森巴赫(Klaus Biesenbach)是外科醫生出身;您提到長谷川佑子(Yuko Hasegawa)是學法律出身的。這個問題與“專業”與“業余”這個貌似簡單但是實則深邃的問題是有關的——或“內部”與“外部”起源的問題。最近貝爾納·斯蒂格勒(Bernard Stiegler)來到中國美術學院做講座,其中一個主題便與這個問題有關(更不要提這位重要的哲學家本身曾經因為持械搶劫入獄)。但藝術家策展人這個身份特別有趣:本身是行業的一部分,但是與策展人身份有著獨特的、有動態張力的距離與關係。作為一名資深策展人,您是怎麼看自己的工作、身份的?
HD:目前策展人在中國當下的狀況比較復雜。整個中國社會的政治、經濟以及文化仍然處在一個變革的時期。那麼,策展結構也在發生巨變。老一代的策展人完成了自身的歷史使命,完成了很重要的工作。80年代甚至90年代的策展實踐的使命,我認為,已經基本上完成了。進入新的千年之後,隨著在藝術院校中策展教育的普及,新一代的策展人已經出現了。但這並不是說兩者之間有著嚴格的距離,評價誰比誰好,我並沒有這樣的意思。我所要指出的是,隨著社會結構的變化,在策展實踐的結構之中發生了話語的變化。策展經驗與社會轉變是有關的。比如說,我們稱為國內老一輩策展人如栗憲庭、高名潞,比如說由他們策劃的89大展——對80年代藝術的很重要的總結。在那個時期,策展實踐非常不同,他們更多地以評論家或理論家的角色進行策展實踐。

我也認為他們後期策劃的展覽在某程度上仍然是大量地與80年代的經驗有關的。再比如說費大為、侯瀚如,他們移居到了海外,他們自身的經驗好像與國內的現實有著一些距離。他們有著國際性的視野,有著對全球文化、政治以及理論的一個比較親近的把握。但是也有一個很大的問題:80年代後期至90年代後期——即後殖民主義盛行的時期——這十年內,當人們用移民文化、混雜性、他者或者差異性來抵抗歐洲中心主義的時候,藝術家黃永砯、陳箴、蔡國強、徐冰等等被很好地推出。但是這一群人的歷史使命也走向了一種式微的狀態。這是伴隨著歐美社會的轉型發生的,也就是說,這不僅僅是歐美社會自身內部的轉型,而且是全球化的轉型。新千年以後金磚國家的崛起改變了全球經濟政治秩序,同時也改變了文化秩序。因此,依托於後殖民文化以及理論的藝術也出現了一種微弱的狀態。這是一種社會結構的變化。最近幾年的新變化是,一些年輕策展人的崛起,他們有藝術史出身的,也有藝術實踐背景的——邱志傑同時是藝術家和策展人;學習藝術史出身的有何桂彥、盧迎華、付曉東、 鮑棟、崔燦燦等等。他們充滿活力,帶動了年輕的藝術,尤其是70年代後期到80年代生人的新崛起的藝術力量。這是目前中國策展實踐的大概狀況。

ART.ZIP:在這樣的總括性話語裏面,已經出現了非常有趣的描述:策展人被視作是帶動性的力量,而不是跟隨性的力量,被視作是領軍人物,而不是簡單地、於事件之後對事件進行描述以及回顧的角色。
HD:我覺得策展實踐的確不是跟風的事情,是需要去帶領,需要有前瞻性的。比如說哈羅德·史澤曼(Harald Szeemann)在1969年策劃的《活在腦海中:當態度變為形式(Live in Your Head: When Attitudes Become Form)》;讓-於貝爾·馬爾丹(Jean-Hubert Martin)在1989年的《大地魔術師(Magiciens de la terre)》展覽,阿基萊·伯尼托·奧利瓦(Achille Bonito Oliva)與“超前衛運動”(Transavantgarde)等等。這些例子有著借鑒意義。所以藝術現象都是由理論或別的根基作支撐的。馬爾丹《大地魔術師》是對西方中心主義的批判;奧利瓦嘗試回歸到意大利中世紀藝術之中去尋找獨特的意大利藝術的能量,以穿越傳統和當代的時空,以融入他對於意大利詩學的理解。這些都是策展人有著敏感思想的例子。再比如日本的“具體派”(Gutai),“物派”(Mono-ha)的崛起,韓國的單色潮流(Monochrome)等等。

在中國,無論是架構藝術現象還是提出具有思想性的潮流,我們都需要理論基礎和藝術史譜系的支撐,否則無法判斷藝術的坐標,不能僅憑對藝術作品的直覺做判斷。直覺固然重要,但理性中的邏輯推理和判斷更是必不可少的,這就聯系到文化系統、知識譜系,包括思想、上下文關系,比如中國歷史以及中國文化的結構。所以中國策展人需要具備開闊的視野和知識的基礎,如藝術史、政治學、社會學等各方面,把藝術放在大的結構下審視而不是孤立在視覺藝術的狹隘範疇,這樣才能深度解讀藝術,對藝術發生,生產方式有本質的理解。舉個例子,60年代後期日本“物派”的產生和戰後經濟發展密不可分,這和中國前幾年經濟高速發展很類似,如奧運會、世博會等。當時日本文化盲從歐美文化,“物派”的出現在某種意義上是對應歐美文化提出了日本的方式,使藝術重新回歸日本美學與哲學,如日本哲學家西田幾多郎(Kitaro Nishida)的哲學還有禪宗思想等。所以有人認為“物派”和意大利“貧窮藝術”,美國“極簡主義”很相似,但仔細解讀就會發現“物派”有其獨特的美學趣味。若把“貧窮藝術”理解成社會學意義的貧窮藝術,“極簡主義”理解成絕對的形式主義,你會發現“物派”恰恰不同,它強調的是物的自然性、狀態及關系,這與禪宗、寺院和園藝空間,還有神道教密不可分。若策展人將藝術放入結構中理解其本質,可能更加深入、精微一些。

ART.ZIP:我們本次專題源於一位藝術家策展人對傳統策展人身份的質疑。她認為傳統策展人不能對藝術作品施以正義,您怎麼看?
HD:我想藝術家策展人對傳統意義的策展人的不滿,就如同批評和藝術家、機構、策展也永遠是“敵人”,那麼策展人和藝術家也永遠不可能是共同體,所以從某種意義上來說策展人對藝術家而言也是一個“敵人”——敵對關系,因為策展沒有絕對的公正和正義。策展人如同導演,一部電影不可能令所有人滿意,所有的角色不可能同等重要。所以一個展覽總有主次之分,像威尼斯雙年展,藝術家們不可能有同等的空間和重要的位置。

實際上某些策展也是權力話語的體現,當然我們有時會批判這種權力話語,但這個社會必然存在這樣的藝術系統,必然賦予策展人這個權力、職責,至於這個權力的使用是否客觀與公正就另當別論了。因為個體都有自己的愛好、趣味、審美判斷,那自然無法滿足所有人。哪怕是裏程碑意義的展覽也無法避免批判的聲音,如當年的《大地魔術師》,很多人都認為策展人把非藝術的東西引進來,導致展覽不成體統。這背後實際上就是個權力話語的鬥爭。

我個人認為,傳統策展人和藝術家策展人在判斷力和視野上有不同的地方:藝術家策展人的優勢更多體現在對藝術主體有自我判斷,比如:對作品細微處的解讀、敏銳的感悟、藝術生產過程中對材料和空間的把握等。當然也有局限性,他們容易過度強調藝術主體,產生個人偏愛。相較而言,傳統策展人能更能從宏觀與微觀,整體與局部兩個方面辨證地把握展覽方向,即將藝術潮流納入文化發展的結構中,具有藝術發展的前瞻性。這可能是兩者微妙的區別。當然兩者本質的區別還可能是在形而上或是形而下的問題了。傳統策展人思想性,理論性更強些,思考社會學、政治學、跨學科問題可能更深入些;藝術家策展人可能更關註物質性和藝術本身。說到權力爭鬥的話,藝術家策展人也有自己的愛好,這實際上也是一種權力遊戲,並不說藝術家當了策展人就沒有權力了,這是同等的。

藝術家策展人有一段時期很盛行,大概是90年代後期到2000年初。在這個近十年間多人都策過展,如著名墨西哥藝術家加布裏埃爾·奧羅斯科(Gabriel Orozco)、莫瑞吉奧·卡特蘭(Maurizio Cattelan)、蔡國強還有邱誌傑。 當卡特蘭策劃柏林雙年展時,他與意大利專業策展人馬西米利亞諾·吉奧尼(Massimiliano Gioni)合作,而不是單獨策展,這種做法相當聰明。那個時期的美國也很有很多藝術家進行策展實踐。但是我認為藝術家策展人非常有活力,但並沒有產生深遠的影響,這是事實,與專業策展人相比較,他們在理論和思想高度上要欠點。這可以從近二十年的文獻展、雙年展的實踐經驗中得到證明。

說到“外行”策展人,比如外科醫生出身的畢森巴赫創立了柏林雙年展等重要機構,現在他是紐約MOMA以及PS1的主理。雖然他並未接受過專業訓練,但我相信德國有紮實的美術教育基礎,自小的藝術環境培育了他極好的美學感知。另外長谷川佑子之前也是學法律的,所以並不是只有專業出身才能成為策展人。人人都具備潛質,但其中的尺度還是要把握的。所謂尺度就在於策展人的能力,不光是知識,如何籌集資金、與政府建立關系、與機構溝通、如何樹立權威性等,所以策展是一個整體性的社會工程。

ART.ZIP:甚至我們可以將策展人身份和某種姐妹藝術門類作比較,比如說電影制作人或者說導演兼制作人這樣一個身份。
HD:其實某種意義上策展人有點像導演,這個比喻不一定準,尤其在功能上,但僅做個比喻而已。因為從特點上:招募演員,從比喻的角度演員就是藝術家;籌集資金,寫預算計劃書;找拍攝場地如同美術館或其他空間,過程很相似,只是功能不一樣。電影必然是大眾化的,多半緊扣票房,商業性影響很大;藝術,尤其是嚴肅的策展實踐,更多還是非商業化的,如雙年展、文獻展和很多學術性展覽等。

ART.ZIP:近幾年來開始出現了一些“超級策展人”或者“明星策展人”,對於策展人身份,您覺得這是個問題嗎?比如說不是專業出身,卻有大量曝光率,展覽的焦點就是他們自身而不是某位或某幾位藝術家。
HD:這就涉及到策展人本身的角色和他的影響。我將策展人分三種類型:一種是超級策展人,只要他一出現,這個展覽只談策展人,突出策展人的思想,藝術家只是配角;另一種是和藝術家協商的策展人,在這裏,策展人和藝術家是平等關系,他們通過“共謀”實現了展覽的某種平衡;最後一種是突出藝術家的策展人,展覽以藝術家作品為核心。現在的雙年展都希望物色有巨大影響力的“明星或超級”人物,這似乎和品牌營銷很像,必須保持影響力。這就是我提到的第一種類型,實際上策展人權力更大了,有點太像電影導演。但我認為最重要的還是展覽的構建,不管是在藝術系統還是社會學裏,展覽是否能引發我們思考,是否在我們的經驗之外,是否能觸動我們的神經。如今有許許多多的展覽,很多看完我們都會感到失望,這現象值得當下的策展人深思。

ART.ZIP:另外還有一種學術策展人,比如說哲學家博裏斯·葛羅伊斯(Boris Groys)之前在中國策展,齊澤克(Slavoj Zizek)目前也有考慮進入當代藝術圈,汪民安最近也將在上海策劃展覽。他們都是從哲學或文學批評背景出身,已在自己的專業領域工作了幾十年後開始策展實踐,您怎麼看這樣的身份轉變?
HD:策展是一項開放的工作,但它也是一項復雜的社會/文化工程。策展的工作有很多微妙的地方,我們今天談到了很多偉大的哲學家,思想家,他們的策展在解釋上都非常清楚到位,比如法國哲學家讓-弗朗索瓦·利奧塔(Jean Francois Lyotard)就曾在蓬皮杜策過展。但學術型策展人對藝術本身的把握有些許局限,因為除了思想和理論的解讀外,策展工作不僅需要解讀藝術本體的語言/觀念邏輯及其關系,還涉及到對作品與空間、作品與作品、作品與語境的關系巧妙處理,這很微妙:如何在空間內把展覽的安排合理有趣,甚至讓人驚喜,是對策展的考驗。展覽不光只是寫篇好文章,也需要考慮如何達到展覽預期的視覺效果,從而給人很多啟發性的東西。這裏我想做一個簡單比喻,如果把美術館(或其他空間)比作身體,那麽藝術作品被比作衣服,怎樣合理搭配就檢測著(策展)人的品味或(判斷)智慧。因此,一件作品放在不同位置的效果是截然不同的,這使得對藝術作品的解讀會發生變化,好比穿衣搭配,顏色搭配不同導致了視覺效果,從而導致對東西的理解和品味的變化。所以學術策展人不一定能解讀到作品在空間中的微妙之處,尤其是空間的關系,比如作品是安排在墻角、空中、中間還是和其他作品產生呼應,這是一種經驗之談,很難描述,因為不同空間有不同的應對方法。就像拍一部影片,最失敗的做法是照搬模式,不斷的更新和應對才是正解。倘若將北京尤倫斯藝術中心(UCCA)的展覽突然轉移到紐約現代藝術博物館(Museum of Modern Art)展出,這會是一項很大的挑戰,不是作品往那一堆就可以了。

2003年我受邀出席了東京森美術館(Mori Art Museum)以“幸福”(Happiness)為主題的開館展覽,由戴維·艾略特(David Elliott)和皮耶·魯奇·塔基(Pier Luigi Tazzi)共同策劃,此次展覽讓我印象深刻。在其中一間展廳裏擺放著傑夫·昆斯(Jeff Koons)作品《熊和警察(Bear and Policeman, 1988)》,熊摟著警察,警察看向熊;正對面是一件北朝鮮的石膏雕塑作品,女子手捧土豆在微笑;而背後是一張小尺寸油畫作品,主題是北朝鮮人在稱土豆。這立刻折射出一種關系——幸福的相對性:資本主義高度發達下美國幽默的幸福觀和北朝鮮為了生存而出現的虛假的幸福觀。作品間傳遞出很微妙的信息,專業的策展總是能引發很多的聯想和思考。當然不是說反對哲學背景的人進入策展行業,我在嘗試尋找,如何將視覺藝術的內在性充分展現出來,使人產生思考的價值,而不是簡單的堆砌,需要考慮作品的輕重、大小、強弱、緩急,是否互相幹擾,是否和諧,是否能建立有機的聯系,是否能產生有效的對話。從理論上說起來很容易,但實踐過程中需要相當豐富的經驗。

ART.ZIP:在全球範圍內您有在關註什麼策展實踐的運動或潮流嗎?
HD:在我看來,如果說全球範圍內有什麽策展實踐的運動或潮流,那還是以大雙年展或文獻展為主。不過,與20世紀80、90年代相比,今天的雙年展或文獻展不如以前那樣更具明確的學術性、前瞻性和影響力。對我而言,現在除了關註以上所提的大展,我現在更關註金磚國家的藝術動態,以及亞洲藝術的生態,因為這一區域的藝術更顯得有活力。眾所周知,現在受全球金融危機的影響,除美、英、德外,整個歐洲,尤其在藝術文化方面受影響頗深。全球的發展勢頭會向東方轉移,以中國為中心。當然中國社會本身也存在問題,目前正處在崛起階段,盡管現在尚未達到預期的狀態,但發展的速度是相當快了。我親身經歷過90年代的北京,當時舉辦當代藝術展覽是非法的,我們辦展覽只供內部觀摩,不然警察就會來查封。再看現在的雙年展,畫廊機構,私人美術館還有整個藝術市場(博覽會和拍賣行),這跟90年代比起來,中國實際發展才十多年,所以這個進程不容低估。展望未來,中國可能會有更大的發展,因為整個社會正在建立一個完善的系統,機制也會跟著完善。有些事情是我們無法預見的,比如上海自由貿易區的建立就是一次新的嘗試,其中涉及到方方面面,也可能涉及到文化產業。其次,建立法制系統也是非常重要的,這會為中國藝術打下良好的基礎,它的建立能讓一些模糊的事物明朗化。

ART.ZIP:可以和我們談談您最近的藝術項目嗎?
HD:去年(2014)我在摩納哥海洋博物館策劃了展覽《鯊魚與人類(On Sharks and Humanity)》。展覽持續了半年之久。這是一個國際性的展覽,今年5月28日將在莫斯科開幕,9月將在中國國家博物館與觀眾見面。10月,我將前往佛羅倫薩雙年展擔任國際評審。目前我也正在策劃蘇州金雞湖美術館的中韓年輕藝術家的展覽。去年年底,我被邀請策劃2015香港藝術中心《年度旗艦展覽(Flagship Exhibition)》,前幾屆的策展人分別是陳維德(Eugene Tan)、南條史生(Fumio Nanjo)等人。另外德國魯爾區8個城市的9個美術館聯合組織一個超大型的中國藝術展,邀請我擔任藝術顧問,差不多是這樣。

就我個人經驗來說,策展工作存在很多困擾。外界看來中國很有錢,但實際要策劃一次展覽,本身的制約因素還是很多。如申請資金就有很多阻礙,而資金又是非常重要的一環,基本支出如展覽搭建、技術支持、運輸、以及藝術制作等。

當然策展的前提是熱愛與勤奮。這份工作必須要喜歡,也必須要懂,你只有很懂,才會喜歡,否則就是虛假的喜歡,葉公好龍那般。只有透徹的理解藝術作品,你才會熱衷這件事。你需要關心藝術作品的狀態,即生產方式——如何運用和轉換材料、作品在空間和語境中的意義等等。不能孤立的看問題,需要考慮到全球化背景以及藝術潮流的變化等。目前我仍然在不斷更新知識,密切關註我未知世界的藝術。我對於很多方面的了解還是不夠的,比如印度、中亞、拉美以及非洲地區的藝術。比如,2012年在“西班牙國際攝影節(Photo Espana)”上,我曾策劃了一個單元名為“形象的焦慮”。雖然我所策展的這個國際展很成功,但在策展過程中,我也發現自身知識的局限。當然這也正是策展工作的妙處,總是遇到未知的事情,面對挑戰和困難,不斷克服和超越。