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Curating for Empathy: Design Thinking for Social Engagement

Mikhael, Diane (2018) Curating for Empathy: Design Thinking for Social Engagement. Masters thesis, OCAD University.

Item Type: Thesis
Creators: Mikhael, Diane

This study asks, what strategies do curators as design thinkers use to foster social engagement in art exhibitions? Through examinations of the curatorial strategies in two case studies: A Mile in My Shoes, curated by Clare Patey (2015) at the Empathy Museum in London, and Boxed, curated by Sheila Sampath (2017) at The Public Studio in Toronto, I portray five curatorial tactics gleaned from secondary source research and first-person interviews with the curators. Drawn from Ezio Manzini’s five concepts on social engagement and from Tim Brown’s conceptual modes of Design Thinking, I argue that a balance of relational intensity between all participants enables empathy; participation is a refusal of the curator’s authority; participants’ openness to the lives of others enriches the participatory experience; embodied experiences produce empathy in participants; and iterative space produces participants’ own sustainable stories as art. Design thinking in curatorial praxis is a catalyst for social change.

Date: April 2018
Uncontrolled Keywords: Curatorial practice, empathy, resilience, design thinking, social engagement, social innovation, contemporary art
Divisions: Graduate Studies > Criticism and Curatorial Practice
Date Deposited: 05 Jul 2018 18:02
Last Modified: 20 Dec 2021 22:15
URI: https://openresearch.ocadu.ca/id/eprint/2388

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