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Jackson Polys


Institute for Curatorial Practice in Performance


This thesis is a comparative analysis of Re(as)sisting Narratives (2016) and Kahatenhstánion tsi na'tetiatere ne Iotohrkó:wa tánon Iotohrha / Drawing Lines from January to December (2017), two contemporary art exhibitions that self-identify as engaged with decolonial politics.

The comparative analysis considers how the projects’ curators define and apply decoloniality in the following ways: through the refusal and appropriation of written language; through the integration of multilingualism; and the use of spatialized metaphor. I then consider how such decisions are reflected in curatorial decisions concerning exhibition design and selection of art works.

Following this close reading, I conclude with a definition of decoloniality that proposes the application of resource redistribution through the development of Indigenous and settler allegiances. In partnership with settler-identified peoples who are committed to unknowing their power, curatorial practice can be a political tool that supports repatriation through the construction of a reparations economy.



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