EAT THE MUSEUM – Exhibition from Sept 5th – Oct 11th, 2020

2 September 2020

EAT THE MUSEUM – Exhibition from Sept 5th – Oct 11th, 2020

Opening: Friday, Sept 4, 2020 at 5 – 9 pm

With works by Eduard Akuvaev, Eduard Astashev, Adil Astemirov, Alexey Avgustovish, Yuriy Avgustovish, Srazhdin Batyrov, Fedor Chernousenko, Thirza Cuthand, Zuzanna Czebatul, Magomed Dibirov, Mueddin-Arabi Dzhemal, Omar Efimov, Alirza Emirbekov, Dmitriy Fedorov, Grigoriy Gagarin, Elena Gapurova, Dorota Gawęda & Eglė Kulbokaitė, Vasiliy Gorchkov, Viktor Gorkov, Fedor Gorshelt, Omar Guseinov, Irina Guseinova, Gyulli Iranpur, Zainutdin Isaev, Gadzhi Kambulatov, Dmitriy Kapanitsyn, Arsen Kardashov, Magomed Kazhlaev, Albert Khadzhaev, Murad Khalilov, Isa Khumaev, Vika Kirchenbauer, Yuriy Kirichenko, Zhanna Kolesnikova, Galina Konopatskaya, Khairullakh Kurbanov, Nikolay Lakov, Evgeniy Lansere, Andrey Livanov, Murtuzali Magomedov, Apandi Magomedov, Taus Makhacheva, Alexandra Markovskaya, Ruvim Mazel, Yusuf Mollaev, Anna Molska, Abdulvagib Muratchev, Abdulzagir Musaev, Timur Musaev-Kagan, Khalilbek Musayasul, Raúl de Nieves, Yuriy Nikolaev, Oleg Pirbudagov, Galina Pshenitsyna, Eduard Puterbrot, Zulkarnay Rabadanov, Karol Radziszewski, German Ratner, Frants Rubo, Salavat Salavatov, Bea Schlingelhoff, Magomed Shabanov, Sharif Shakhmardanov, Vadim Skugarev, Mikołaj Sobczak, Aziz Suleimanov, Gasan & Gusein Sungurovs, Ibragim-Khalil Supyanov, Nikolay Sverchkov, Ramaya Tegegne, Viron Erol Vert, Klara Vlasova, Evelyn Taocheng Wang, Emma Wolukau-Wanambwa, and Magomed Yunisilau.

The two interrelated exhibitions Poczet at the Kunst(Zeug)Haus and Eat the Museum in the Alte Fabrik Rapperswil take the exceptional and complex history of the adjacent Polenmuseum (Polish Museum) and its soon expected closure as a starting point to examine the logics and politics of exhibiting and collecting, and to call into question the conception of the museum as a neutral, apolitical, and non-violent space.

Founded in 1870 by Polish émigré Count Władysław Broel-Plater (1808–1889), the Polenmuseum in the Rapperswil castle came to epitomize the ambivalences of cultural belonging and representation within the framework of the modern nation-state ever since: initially conceived as an important social and cultural hub for the Polish emigrant community in Switzerland, the museum evolved during a Polish era shaped by foreign rule, partitions and insurrections, and was modelled in the tradition of the 19th century national museum to display the construction of national identity, the rule of the sovereign and the formation of citizenship within emerging liberal democracies. The museum’s phases in the 20th and early 21st century must be understood as a mirroring of and partaking within a larger political framework of significant historical turns, including the establishment of the Second Polish Republic, the Second World War, the rise and fall of communism, and the installation of neoliberal, neocolonial, and authoritarian rule. After residing in the Swiss castle for 150 years, the museum’s residence is anticipated to be terminated by end of 2021—consumed by the interests of the now merged municipality Rapperswil-Jona and its plans to re-stage the castle, one of its aims being “quality before quantity”. The future of the museum and its collection remains uncertain.

Inspired by this local history and current debate and looking into the still-alive and still-hierarchical tropes of traditional art, folk-art, or any minoritarian art, the group exhibition Eat the Museum addresses the transnational significance of a constant re-evaluation of the normalizing, classifying, excluding, controlling, and governing violence of visualizing practices perpetuated or constructed by museums and other (art) institutions.

Highlighting situated knowledges and embodied practices and decidedly opposing the neoliberal condition and its impact on cultural institutions as much as the growing xenophobia, the exhibition unites local and international positions who work with a variety of media including sculpture, painting, video or installation, and find their commonalities in the re-negotiation and re-imagination of transnational alliances that serve a collective anti-fascist agency within and beyond institutions.

Eat the Museum is the third of four exhibitions curated by Fanny Hauser and Viktor Neumann as part of the 2019/20 Curatorial Fellowship of the Gebert Foundation for Culture.

For further information please visit

Alte Fabrik

Klaus-Gebert-Strasse 5

CH – 8640 Rapperswil


Opening hours during an exhibition:

Wed 12 – 6 pm

Sat – Sun 11 – 5 pm

and by appointment

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