Collaborative Models in Exhibition-Making and Museology

This PhD study focuses on leveraging current collaborative exhibition-making practices onto an institutional scale. Current museum models rely on board-led decision making and rigid hierarchical structuring, but these models have led to a slew of recent problems and controversies. A radical restructuring of the non-profit museum model is necessary for institutional survival.  The antidote to a dysfunctional hierarchical system is a distributed, collaborative one. As such, the guiding question to this research is, “is a collaborative museum which subverts board structure possible, and what would one look like if it could be achieved?”

Kat Zagaria is an independent curator of interdisciplinary art. The shows she curates have an interdisciplinary intent and an eye towards reimagining societal canons and hierarchies. Zagaria holds a Master of Arts degree in Modern Art History, Theory, and Criticism from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago as well as a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Art History with concentrations in Curatorial Studies and Book Arts from the Maryland Institute College of Art. She has worked at a wide array of museums and rare book libraries such as the Walters Art Museum, the Barnes Foundation, the Joan Flasch Artists’ Book Collection, the Newberry Library, the Hans Ulrich Obrist Archive, and the Art Institute of Chicago. She is currently the Curatorial Fellow at the John Michael Kohler Arts Center.