Elke Krasny, Maintenance and Visibility, Arch+ Contemporary Feminist Spatial Practices, 2023, 192-196

This text is intended as a contribution to the development of a critical theory of architecture and care work, a constellation that is deeply enmeshed in the reproduction of relations of injustice. A critical theory on architecture and care work, like any other critical theory worthy of the name, must start from concrete realities. Through analysis, it can contribute to changes enacting social and environmental justice that challenge the world-dominating system of labor exploitation and resource extractivism.

Arch+ Zeitgenössische feministische Raumpraxis



Writing this book began in mid-March just after the WHO had officially declared Covid-19 a and it was published on May 5, the very day World Health official end of pandemic. Yet, pandemics do not end. Pandemic effects are lasting, and they continue to change bodies and minds. They are inside bodies, minds, and imaginaries. Pandemic effects have largely impacted on care and produced new forms of care exhaustion and care violence. Pandemic thinking and pandemic memory work are crucial to understanding what it means to be living with a planet that has been infected and wounded by capitalist-colonial-imperial-patriarchal violence. Feminist pandemic thinking builds imaginaries and insists on policies for recovery.

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»We must declare war on the virus,« stated UN chief António Guterres on March 13, 2020, just two days after the WHO had characterized the outbreak of the novel Covid-19 virus as a pandemic. Elke Krasny introduces feminist worry in order then to develop a feminist cultural theory on pandemic frontline ontologies, which give rise to militarized care essentialism and forced heroism. Feminist hope is gained through the attentive reading of feminist recovery plans and their novel care feminism, with the latter’s insistence that recovery from patriarchy is possible.

»Wide-ranging and cross-disciplinary, this book is an important critical reflection on the militaristic language that frames public imaginaries of care in times of global health emergency.«
— Athena Athanasiou, professor of Social Anthropology, Panteion University of Social and Political Sciences, Greece, and author of ›Agonistic Mourning: Political Dissidence and the Women in Black‹

 »Living with an Infected Planet provides an astute analysis of the politics of the Covid-19 pandemic and the language through which it was framed. Elke Krasny reminds us that it matters what metaphors we invest in to give meaning to our worlds.«
Emma Dowling, author of ›The Care Crisis ‒ What Caused It and How Can We End It?‹

»Balancing feminist worry and hope, Elke Krasny’s rich book leaves the reader with a call for action as much as self-reflection on the Covid-19 pandemic as a crisis of care.«
Henriette Steiner, associate professor, Copenhagen University, Denmark, and co-author of ›Touch in the Time of Corona Reflections on Love, Care, and Vulnerability in the Pandemic‹

»I was deeply moved by this thoughtful book’s trajectory from ›feminist worry‹ about the ubiquitous war metaphors to describe the pandemic to ›feminist hope‹ for a genuinely transformative recovery imagined as a new care feminism.«
Joan Tronto, professor emerita of Political Science, University of Minnesota, USA


230 Seiten
ISBN: 978-3-8376-5915-3


Yasmeen Lari. Architecture for the Future
edited by Angelika Fitz, Elke Krasny, Marvi Mazhar
and Architekturzentrum Wien
MIT Press 2023

A rich exploration of the extraordinary life and work of celebrated architect Yasmeen Lari, winner of the 2023 RIBA Royal Gold Medal.

After more than three decades as a renowned global architect, Yasmeen Lari, the first woman to open her own architecture firm in Pakistan in 1964, developed Zero Carbon Architecture, which unites ecological and social justice. This volume, edited by Angelika Fitz, Elke Krasny, and Marvi Mazhar, presents Lari’s trajectory from exemplary modernist to zero carbon revolutionary, with a focus on her remarkable contributions to the global architectural movement to decarbonize and decolonize. The book includes extensive photographs, drawings, and plans from Lari’s archive, most of which have not previously been shown or published.

Lari’s architectural thinking and activism have always gone beyond the quest for a singular built solution. Rather, she strategically plans systemic approaches and solutions, be it for housing, a heritage foundation, or zero-carbon shelters with communities at risk. Original essays from diverse international contributors contextualize Lari’s work; investigate architecture and the postimperial, postcolonial, and postpartition condition; and examine the intersections of architecture and human rights, climate change, decolonization, gender, care, activism, and vernacular innovation. More than a tribute to Yasmeen Lari’s extraordinary career, this volume brings her legacy forward and shows how to create change today

Abira Ashfaq, Cassandra Cozza, Angelika Fitz, Runa Kahn, Anne Karpf, Elke Krasny, Marvi Mazhar, Chris Moffat, Anila Naeem, Raquel Rolnik, Helen Thomas, Rafia Zakaria


288 pp., 7 x 9 in, 180 figs.
ISBN: 9780262546096
Published: May 9, 2023
Publisher: The MIT Press


Curating with Care
edited by Elke Krasny and Lara Perry
London: Routledge 2023

This book presents over 20 authors’ reflections on ‘curating care’ – and presents a call to give curatorial attention to the primacy of care for all life and for more ‘caring curating’ that responds to the social, ecological and political analysis of curatorial caregiving.

Social and ecological struggles for a different planetary culture based on care and respect for the dignity of life are reflected in contemporary curatorial practices that explore human and non-human interdependence. The prevalence of themes of care in curating is a response to a dual crisis: the crisis of social and ecological care that characterizes global politics and the professional crisis of curating under the pressures of the increasingly commercialized cultural landscape. Foregrounding that all beings depend on each other for life and survival, this book collects theoretical essays, methodological challenges and case studies from curators working in different global geographies to explore the range of ways in which curatorial labour is rendered as care.

Practising curators, activists and theorists situate curatorial labour in the context of today’s general care crisis. This volume answers to the call to more fully understand how their transformative work allows for imagining the future of bodily, social and environmental care and the ethics of interdependency differently.


Table of Contents

Elke Krasny and Lara Perry: Introduction

Part I. Caring Curating

Françoise Vergès: Curatorial Labour and Decolonial Feminism

Bruxas Bruxas Arts Collective: Get Bodied: Inverting the Witch to Summon a New Commons

Care beyond Curation: A Conversation with Lauren Craig. Interview by Racha Baraka Pauline

De Souza: Transcultural Care and the Cultural Sector in the United Kingdom

Helen Kaplinsky: Caring for ‘range-ful’ identities in the work of Danielle Brathwaite Shirley

Mirella Maria: Decolonial and Heritage Practices in the Context of Current Global Challenges. Quilombola Museology and Digital Technologies in Brazilian Community Museums

Sophie Lingg: Caring Curating and Social Media

Berit Fischer: A Laboratory of Care. Active Micropolitics, Joyfulness and Affectivity

Joulia Strauss: Avtonomi Akadimia. Curating becomes Curing

Alexandra Kokoli: Care, Aftercare, and the Work of Transmission: Learning from Greenham Common

Eliana Otta: Caring for Mourning, Working with Loss. Curating, Listening, and Attending to the Sacred in Peruvian Highlands and Forests

Elke Krasny: Care, Thought, Being: Curating with a Wounded Planet

Part II. Curating Care

Caroline Gausden, Kirsten Lloyd, Nat Raha, and Catherine Spencer: Curating Forms of Care in Art and Activism: A Roundtable on Life Support

Helena Reckitt: From Coping to Curious: Unlearning and Reimagining Curatorial Habits of Care

Sascia Bailer: Care for Caregivers: Curating against the Care Crisis

Jacqueline Millner and Zsuzsanna Zsoboszlay: Cultivating Care Ethics and the Minor Gesture in Curatorial and Research Practices

Jenny Richards: ‘Do what you do best and outsource the rest’ – Curatorial Lessons within Cultures of Outsourcing

Katja Kobolt, Petja Grafenauer, and Brigita Miloš: The Platform of Care: Collective Curatorial Modes of the n*a*i*l*s hacks*facts*fictions platform

Claudia Lomoschitz: Curating Queer Nursing: the performance installation PARTUS Gyno Bitch Tits

Magdalena Kallenberger (MATERNAL FANTASIES collective): Curating a Collective Body: a Non-Idealized Concept of Care

Johanna Braun: Spellbound. Witchcraft Activism as Caring Curatorial Practice

Zahra Khan: Curating Aliveness. Engaging with Ecologies

Hansel Sato: La escuela del buen vivir/ The school of good life: counteracting the imperial mode of living


ISBN 9781032069913
328 Pages 15 B/W Illustrations
Published March 15, 2023 by Routledge


Curating as Feminist Organizing
edited by Elke Krasny and Lara Perry
London: Routledge 2023

What makes curating feminist organizing? How do curators relate to contemporary feminist concerns in their local conditions and the globalized artworld? The book brings together twenty curatorial case studies from diverse regions of the globe.

Reflecting their own curatorial projects or analyzing feminist-inspired exhibitions, the authors in this book elaborate feminist curating as that which is inspired to challenge gender politics not only within but also beyond the doors of the museum and gallery. Connecting their wider feminist politics to their curatorial practices, the book provides case studies of curatorial practice that address the legacies of racialized and ethnic violence, including colonialism; which seek to challenges the state’s regulation of citizenship and sexuality; and which realize the drive for economic justice in the organizations and roles in which curators work. The settings in which this work is done range from university art galleries to artist-run spaces and educational or activist programmes.

This collection will be enjoyed by those studying and researching curating, exhibitions, socially and ecologically engaged contemporary art practices, and feminist transnational movements in diverse geographic contexts. The essays are of relevance to practicing curators, critical cultural practitioners, and artists.


Table of Contents

Introduction: On the Feminist Work of Organizing
Elke Krasny and Lara Perry 

Part I: Colonial Wounds and Transformative Healing

1. The Museum and the Anthropocene: Ecological Grief, Planetary Mourning, Healing Feminist Curating
Elke Krasny

2. Resisting Extractivism of Wisdom in the Feminist Curatorial Exercise
Emilia Quiñones-Otal

3. Feminist Curating as Storytelling and Mothering: The Work of D and Kate Harding
Tara McDowell

4. Curating Feminine Alterity: Deconstructing Feminist Strategies by Contemporary Iranian Women Artists
Katy Shahandeh

5. Geographies of Community Care: Cultural Spaces curated by Black Womxn in Copenhagen and Vienna
Teju Adisa-Farrar

6. In the Spirit of Futura: Daily Practices and Challenges of Producing and Maintaining a Feminist Art Space
Katharina Koch

7. Rewriting the Manifesto and Filipina Feminist Publishing
Faye Cura

Part II. State Hegemony and Resistant Communities

8.  Human Rights, Memory and Contemporary Artistic Practice in Turkey
Eylem Ertürk

9.  Stretching the Institution, Cultivating Interdependency: Feminist Curating as Political Organizing in the Post-Crisis Spanish State
Carlota Mir

10. Radical Geographies of Feminist Curating within the Post-Yugoslav Space
Jelena Petrović

11. Summoning the Witches of the Past: Curatorial Research on Witchcraft in Art & Activism
Katharina Brandl

12. Encounters with Asian Diasporic Identities: The Exhibition Neither Black / Red / Yellow Nor Woman at the Times Art Center Berlin
Julia Hartmann

13. The Vulva Case: Feminist Art, Digital Obscenity, and Censorship in Japan
Hitomi Hasegawa

14. On the Production and Challenging of Sexual Norms through the Art Institution: A Viennese Case Study
Juliane Saupe

15. Searching for Ann(e) : Digital Fan Curation and the Expansion of the Queer Heritage Landscape
Katelyn Williams 

16. On Common Spaces, Affinity and the Problem of a Torn Social Fabric
Dana Daymand and Nika Dubrovsky

Part III. Labour Injustice and the Politics of Solidarity 

17. Curating as a Collective Process: Feminist, Curatorial, and Educational Perspectives
Dorothee Richter

18. Your Hands in My Shoes: Reorganizing La Galerie, Centre for Contemporary Art in Noisy-le-Sec
Émilie Renard and Vanessa Desclaux

19. Objects of Desire: Curating Sex Worker Art in the 21st Century
Lena Chen

20. Whose Visibility? Labour Divides, Care Politics, and Strategies of Solidarity in the Art Field
Angela Dimitrakaki



ISBN 9781032065304
310 Pages 22 B/W Illustrations


Elke Krasny’s essay “Radicalizing Care. Feminist Futures for Living with an Infected Planet” was translated into Japanese by Yayo Okano on the occasion of the exhibition Thinking about Caring and Motherhood through Contemporary Art. When? Where? By Whom? Why? How? at Art Tower Mito, February – May, 2023
The exhibition was curated by Oko Goto (Curator, Contemporary Art Center, Art Tower Mito)

Elke Krasny. ‘The Museum and the Anthropocene. Ecological Grief, Planetary
Mourning, Healing Feminist Curating.’ 2023
The essay introduces the museum as a modern institution, through which we can study the making of the culture of the Anthropocene. Analysed as an institution of capture, best understood through a theory of dead objects kept alive, the museum represents the way the Anthropocene reorganized and regulated life and death. Today, planetary ruination is understood to result from humans as geological and climatalogical force. This ruination followed from the Enlightenment ideology of white Man’s universalized supremacy, which supported the formation of colonial patriarchy and racial capitalism. Today’s ecological grief needs new collective rituals and spiritual and emotional articulations for planetary mourning to deal with the aftermath of the ongoing sixth mass extinction event. Arguing that the museum, precisely because it is a storehouse of death-making anthropogenic politics, is a site for which the essay prefigurates new forms of healing feminist curating, it also acknowledges that such healing has to confront legacies of imperial, bourgeois, and white-centric feminism, aligned with Anthropocene hegemony.

For centuries, public space has been given special significance in the context of political ideas and collective imaginaries. Thus understood, the idea of public space speaks of a politics of appearance and of rights, including the rights to public assembly and speech. The regimes of power that commanded the planning, designing, and building of public spaces bestowed considerable authority on public space. They filled the political idea of public space with power. Quite paradoxically, it is precisely the claim to this authority and this power that the enactment of public assembly and speech makes. Public space lends authority and power to those who claim it. Those who gather in public space, here and now, claim the political idea of public space in the material and built realities of specific public spaces that were shaped, financed, and built by ruling powers. How can the figure of Antigone ask of us to see the contradictions and conflicts that would open up a much more complicated, unsettling, and uneasy understanding of the realities of public space as a political idea?
Read more:, 2023.

The word ‘care’ is becoming as present in the vocabulary of contemporary art and culture as has the word ‘curating’. While some may suspect this upward trend in use reflects mere fashionability, we demonstrate in this book that its prevalence in contemporary curatorial practice should be understood as a response to a dual crisis: the persistent crisis of social and ecological care that characterizes global politics and the more recent professional crisis of curating. The convergence of these two developments has resulted in both a call for ‘curating care’ – an invitation to give curatorial attention to the primacy of care for all life – and a call for more ‘caring curating’ – a change in the practices of curating to foreground caregiving as framed through social and political analysis.

Depictions of sexual violence are frequently found in the collections and displays of art museums, and material that represents and affirms violence against women often is displayed unchallenged. This article poses questions about how the presence of this material has been addressed in the relations between feminist activism against sexual violence, art made by artists responding to and participating in feminist activism, and the curatorial activities that have arisen to address the challenges that these activities present to art museums. The chapter investigates the 2021 exhibition Titian: Women, Myth and Power at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum and its handling of themes of rape in the central exhibit, Titian’s Rape of Europa; the history of themes of rape in feminist art since the 1970s and in exhibitions of this art that have taken place in museums in the last two decades; and curatorial engagements with sexual violence and rape in recent art exhibitions in the US and in the UK. The article argues that new strategies for the presentation and interpretation of artworks dealing with sexual violence are needed for museums to redress the patriarchal and colonial presence of sexual violence in their collection.