With the exhibition Boundary Objects in Madrid, the research and exhibition project Artificial Facts (2014/2015) opens after the exhibition in Dresden, which followed after Activations in Cape Town (South Africa), Porto-Novo (Benin) and Dresden (Germany). New commissions for the exhibition and other selected works by international artists pose a challenge to the visual colonization of the museal gaze, examining established visual regimes and calling the gestures of displays and representation—and ultimately the construction of the “other” in the museum—into question. The artists are interested in the future status of objects that were once collected as pieces of cultural-historical evidence, as souvenirs and trophies, and are today increasingly attributed to a globalized World Art. Spotlights and pedestals are now replacing the showcases once used to display artifacts.
Applying the term Boundary Objects, the exhibition focuses on the potential of objects to transcend established contexts and meanings: as opponents of their own history, the objects become mediators for larger contexts of a shared commemoration of the violence of unethical collecting, which filled the European museums of the 19th and early 20th century, and for the necessity of new creations of transcultural narrations.