6 More Bleeding-Edge Museum Technocrats to Watch
MUSEUM: Indianapolis Museum of Art (IMA)
POSITION: Curator of Audience Experiences and Performance (first to hold this title)
WHAT HE DOES: Leading a team of four, Stulen curates events at the museum, from traditional lectures to adventurous performance interventions staged across the sprawling 100-acre premises. Think of his position as the marriage of a time-based art curator with art historical training and a public programmer tasked with engaging audiences of all stripes. He started five weeks ago, so even he is still figuring out what he does at the IMA.
KILLER APP: At the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis, where he worked from 2008 until now, Stulen launched the public program called Open Field, which famously hosted the Internet “Cat Video Festival” in 2012. Showing YouTube videos of the Internet’s favorite furry meme—pouncing, mewing, acting imperial—on a big screen in the museum’s commons, the festival made public a viewing experience usually confined to a smartphone or personal computer screen. The festival ended up drawing some 10,000 people to the Walker field in its summer run, reinventing (or else nostalgic for) the shared experience of the Rocky Horror Picture Show in the digital age.
FUTURISTIC PLANS: Stulen is not about awesome gadgetry and fancy apps—he’s into old fashioned moving pictures, only amped with an Internet-age metabolism. In his new role, he plans to keep on disassembling the rituals surrounding Internet videos. Next up? Biker video clips: epic crashes, bike messengers in Brussels, famous movie sequences. Another video projection festival slated for early 2015 will activate a whole range of screens across the city in the spirit of a guerilla art project, from outdoor projections downtown to QR-activated screens to sports bar televisions, all emitting something completely unexpected.
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