The Gifts Room

curator:  Phoebe Beckett Chingono

Nika posted about David’s funny arrangements of things, I replied that I have on my desk 3 Polish fish-shaped ceramic dishes that were to be a gift for him. Nika suggested a new room, “presents for David”.

Unlike other museums, MoC’s interest doesn’t really lie in the curation of objects, it wants to de-thingify social relations. Yet, objects accumulate, are tossed, and scattered about one in processes of living and dying (Harnik says). Before a leaf, a bead, or vase can be used it has to be searched for, gathered, cared for. It’s curious to learn that David did this thing of finding striking objects and ordering them within arbitrary designs, on his desk, or some other shrine to the profane, considering this is what he brilliantly narrates in his analysis of 19th Century West African value systems which horrified European merchants at the time – though maybe it doesn’t come as a surprise that David tended to write about an Other which he took part in.

Would we like to have a room for things received from, given to, and intended  to be given to David?
People can send images of their things to this thread to be curated in a visual display, unless someone has a more creative idea for what we can do with the artefacts.