By continuing to use the site you agree to our Privacy & Cookies policy

Who will curate the curators?

Ian Martin is averaging four and a half stars on RateYourCurator.com

MONDAY Women architects. Glass ceiling. One day there’ll be a really good joke made about this, we’ll be able to move on, and neither ‘architects’ nor ‘ceiling’ will need to be qualified.

TUESDAY Well, that was the most embarrassing pitch for a city masterplanning gig ever.

The Kazhakstani clients were absolutely baffled by my performance, which included a slideshow of contemporary landmarks resembling human organs, followed by a rendition of Frank Ifield’s I Remember You in a beanie hat.

Of course they didn’t know what to make of it, but in my defence it WASN’T MY FAULT.

Here’s a tip, Kazhakstani high-rollers. Next time you’re looking for an ‘accomplished designer of iconic landmarks and experienced urban modeller’, make sure your stupid translator doesn’t mis-type the last bit.That way, people won’t turn up and do urban yodelling. A skill which is niche, but useless, you doughnuts.

WEDNESDAY To Scotland, where I’m designing an innovative ‘green bridge’ over a ‘brown motorway’. The new road will run through Aberdeenshire, the whole of which has been designated a ‘wildlife wethaven’ to save messing about. What makes the ‘MSquirty2’ motorway so special? All six carriageways are simply mud.

As part of a calibrated humiliation, drivers will be invited to join the MSquirty2 via genuine ‘slip-roads’ of watery sludge and then to proceed with giggled-at caution. Conditions in winter are expected to be extremely hazardous. Ice, standing water, virtually no traction for wheels, most lanes already blocked by bogged-down vehicles.

My green bridge will be a pleasingly rickety affair. Its primary function is a viewing platform for jeering pedestrians and cyclists, who will be encouraged to bring along wildlife to watch too, just to rub it in.

THURSDAY The green bridge thing’s just a swing-by really. I’m only here to check the local timber supplier’s organic, and to be honest I could have done that by email.

I’ve brought a companion. Amy Blackwater the disabled balaclava’d ecomentalist, who needs to keep a low profile at the moment as she recently murdered three bedroom tax inspectors. Still, she has been useful. She helped choose the grasses, herbs and wildflowers for my latest Artist’s Impression, and she always gets us served first at the bar.

We have to head back south tonight though - Amy has an appointment with an ATOS assessor and it takes her ages to get there in a wheelchair.
But there’s still time to browse the Woodland Accessories Outlet Centre, where she buys a very rustic-looking axe and hammer combo, a heavy-duty wood saw, about a hundred metres of natural fibre twine and some sturdy garden rubble sacks.

FRIDAY Last major curatorial gig of the year coming up in the Middle East. It promises to be as stimulating and challenging as the 17 I’ve done since January.

Checklist: an illusion of directional consensus in global culture through the aggregation of vaguely similar artefacts; the controversial inclusion of at least one exhibit outraging public decency; the conflation of ‘curate’ and ‘create’ to suggest that a curated event is somehow producing new bits of culture, and a terrible pun in the title.

Yes, Kuwait: Curate To Create has all that and more. I have gone beyond mere event management to create something that curates curation itself, weaving all the thematic threads of the global curating industry together to form a sort of magic carpet of curatorial sponsorship.

My stock is high. I’m now averaging four and a half stars on RateYourCurator.com.

My self-congratulation is interrupted by Amy, who’s calling to ask if I’ve sorted my one exhibit outraging public decency, ‘only I’ve got several sacks of ATOS assessor with no real purpose at the moment. I thought you could stick them in a glass box or whatever like Damien Hirst does, otherwise I’ll give the lot to Commie Mick for his allotment…’

I tell her I’m all right for decency outrage, thanks. I’ve included a short film of my own, Woman In A Balaclava. It’s basically footage of Amy driving a car, smoking roll-ups and saying horrible things about Kuwaiti men. I might rename it The Architecture of Glass Ceilings, get someone from The Guardian to do a piece.

SATURDAY Five-a-zeitgeist theoretical football. Retrokinesis 2, Tempathy 2 after connection timeout.

SUNDAY Curate self in the recliner. Give self new twist. Fall to floor. Style out new, grounded self.

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment.

The searchable digital buildings archive with drawings from more than 1,500 projects

AJ newsletters