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The End will Tune In with More Beginnings (working title)

On September 11th at 5:30 pm Valentina Curandi invites you to an inaugural event and a performative act that marks symbolically the beginning of her PhD trajectory in artistic research practice with MERIAN (Maastricht Experimental Research in and through the Arts Network).

How can art practice sustain research on the uncertainties experienced by practitioners in the artistic field when thinking about dying?

The kick-off event takes the form of a performative act, a summoning of guardians and references for initiating a research about death and dying, and thinking about what will be of one’s artistic experience when gone. This occasion presents the terms of engagement with a research that aims to open dialogues with artists and organisations about the needs for more assistance and inclusion in the fields of death management and legacy making. The event focuses on what emerges at this early stage, namely the search for a methodology that is embedded in performative and interdisciplinary artistic practice. It reflects on the position of the art practitioner researcher trying to become an instrument of attunement in research making.

Location: art science lab, University College Maastricht (UCM), Heksenstraat 8, Maastricht. The event will last ca. 20 minutes, followed by discussion and drinks.

Biographical Notes

Valentina Curandi (she/her) is an art practitioner with an experimental approach to bodily and scripted performativity. She is interested in how languages govern bodies, addressing them with obligations and requests for role performance. Her latest productions narrate the steps and actions needed to leave her body of immaterial work to a nonhuman entity after death. Valentina created commissioned projects for, among others, Kunstlicht (NL), Showroom MAMA (NL), Marwan (NL), The Physics Room (NZ), the Quadriennale di Roma (I), Konstfak (SWE), Centrale Fies (IT), Kunstraum Munich (D), ar/ge kunst (IT), Museum of Art Fort Lauderdale (FL), VIAFARINI (IT), New York Art Book Fair, Flux Factory and Center for Book Arts (U.S.A.).


Image title: Figures of Immunity and Contract, 2019

Figures of Immunity and Contract, 2019


Valentina’s Ph.D. trajectory will look into the capability of art practitioners to leave wishes and make dispositions upon the eventuality of death. Care for the afterlife. Handling dying processes and posthumous wishes in the arts and with artistic practice (working title) will inquire to which extent the artistic infrastructures (especially those in art education), the dominant legal and financial frames (of inheritance law and estate planning), and the technologies of death management (such as last wills and testaments) can support practitioners in affirming personal wishes and defining the afterlife of their artistic works. Performative and interdisciplinary artistic strategies will be used to explore how art practice can take care of a sensitive matter, when setting up and facilitating participatory research.

The Ph.D. research is supervised by Christoph Rausch (UCM), Eliza Steinbock (FASoS), and Ulrike Scholtes (ZUYD University).