Museums as Storytellers – Silent and Open Communications of (Aesthetic) Values

“I will now recount the legend of the Buddha’s life, which has been told in this or a similar fashion for many thousands of years.” With these words I began my workshops on the “Life Legend of the Buddha”, which I had the opportunity to conduct at the Museum Rietberg in Zurich with pupils from 1st-3...

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Bibliographic Details
Published in:Religious Materials: Emic Perspectives - Etic Constructions - Museum Classifications. REDIM Conference 2021
Main Author: Lisowski, Karolina
Format: Presentation
Language:English
Published: Philipps-Universität Marburg 2021
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Online Access:Video
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Summary:“I will now recount the legend of the Buddha’s life, which has been told in this or a similar fashion for many thousands of years.” With these words I began my workshops on the “Life Legend of the Buddha”, which I had the opportunity to conduct at the Museum Rietberg in Zurich with pupils from 1st-3rd grade primary school. I then claimed that I could tell the same story using only my hands and posture. The children cheerfully joined in as I explained the meaning of the mudras (i.e., hand gestures) depicted in the art objects. Art education uses the objects on display as an anchor point for telling the stories associated with them, often involving the senses and the body of the participants. In this talk, I will use examples from my practical experience in art education at the Museum Rietberg in Zurich to explore the extent to which an educational concept can approximate an emic use of objects from an etic perspective, and to which aim. Against this background, I will reflect on the museum space from a postcolonial perspective: The critical examination of the site as a “silent storyteller” always communicating its self-image through moods and atmospheres, is essential when talking about the potential for conflicting storytelling.
Physical Description:00:15:21 Duration
3 Pages
DOI:10.17192/es2022.0007