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Events 2009


Changing the Demographic
Lecture with Ester Sayers, Tate Modern London

Lecture within the ICOM conference ”Lost generation? The Young in museums“

Changing the Demographic. Engaging young people in modern and contemporary art Esther Sayers, Curator for Young People’s Programmes, Tate Modern, London

Friday, March 6. 2009, 7 p.m.

In the past, gallery and museum audiences were mainly made up of highly educated and professional people who were already well accustomed to looking at art. Over the past 100 years, there have been many attempts to broaden the demographic of gallery visitors and to welcome those who have not visited them before. Tate Modern faces particular challenges in achieving these goals, through the sheer number of visitors, 3 million in 2007, and in relation to the demographic of local people which is far more multicultural than it in the 1970’s.
Tate’s collection belongs to the people, one of the organisational aims is to make the work available to as many visitors as possible. Tate is always keen to widen the profile of its visitors. Tate Modern privileges some of its visitors by asking them to become advisors and conduits between the public in their communities and the gallery. By empowering the visitor to create their own programmes, meanings and events, the opportunities for cultural activity are maximised. People are brought together to interact around and between cultural objects, interpretive communities are formed. Ester Sayers will talk about approaches that encourage young people to use the gallery independently not only as part of a school trip or a family visit but to come with their friends or on their own. She will explore some of the philosophical questions that this work raises for cultural organisations.

Photo: ARTgenossen