Bush Global Advisory Committee
Photos: Dan Dennehy
Global Advisory Committee members: Walter K. Chakela is a playwright, poet, director, and arts administrator in Johannesburg, South Africa. He has been the artistic director of the Windybrow Centre for the Arts since 1993. From 1990 to 1992 he was artistic director of the Bophuthatswana Arts Council. A member of the Congress of South African Writers (of which he served as president for three years), Chakela has written more than 25 plays for theater and several television and radio programs, as well as books on theater and children’s literature. In addition to directing his own work, he often directs plays by William Shakespeare and contemporary playwrights, and he has toured in Africa, Europe, and the United States. Vishakha N. Desai, Ph.D., is the senior vice president and director of the Museum at the Asia Society, New York. Prior to joining the Asia Society in 1990, she was at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, where she served as head of public programs in the education department and as a curator for Indian, Southeast Asian, and Islamic Collections in the curatorial department. She also worked at the Brooklyn Museum of Art and at the Cleveland Museum of Art. Author of numerous exhibition catalogues and articles dealing with contemporary Asian art, Desai has also been a faculty member at Boston University, the University of Massachusetts, Princeton University, and Columbia University. She has been appointed to the board of directors of many cultural institutions, including, most recently, the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts (1998–present), the Association of Art Museum Directors (1995–1999, president 1998–1999), and the College Art Association (1995–1998). Paulo Herkenhoff, formerly an independent curator and critic based in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, is currently director of its Museu Nacional de Belas Artes. He was adjunct curator in the Department of Painting and Sculpture at the Museum of Modern Art, New York (MoMA), for three years where he curated such exhibitions as TEMPO (2002) and The Marriage of Reason and Squalor (2000). Prior to his appointment at MoMA, Herkenhoff was artistic director of the XXIV Bienal de São Paulo (1997–1999) and chief curator of the Museu de Arte Moderna of Rio de Janeiro (1985–1990). In 1997 he curated the Brazilian Pavilion of the XLVII Venice Biennale. In addition to his curatorial activities Herkenhoff writes extensively on artists both from and outside of Brazil. Hou Hanru is an independent curator and critic based in Paris. He is an advisor at the Rijksakademie van Beeldende Kunsten, Amsterdam; a member of the Independent Curators International Exhibition Committee, New York; and a French correspondent for Flash Art International. He has been the curator or co-curator of numerous exhibitions, including the Gwangju Biennale (2002); Paris pour Escale at the Musée d’art moderne de la Ville de Paris (2000–2001); the Project Rooms, ARCO, Madrid (2000); the Shanghai Biennale (2000); and Cities on the Move (1997–2000, traveling exhibition). Hou has been a jury member for several art awards and has lectured in many art institutions, art schools, and universities in China, Taiwan, France, Germany, Great Britain, the United States, and elsewhere. He regularly writes for a variety of art magazines, including Third Text, Times Asia, Art Monthly, Atlantica, and Technikart. A collection of his writings and interviews, On the Mid-Ground, was recently published by Timezone 8 (Hong Kong, 2002). Vasif Kortun is director of Proje4L, Istanbul’s first museum of contemporary art, and director of Platform Garanti Contemporary Art Center, Istanbul, Turkey. He was the chief curator and director of the Third Istanbul Biennial in 1992, and founding director of the Museum of the Center for Curatorial Studies, Bard College, Annandale-on-Hudson, New York (1994–1997). Kortun has curated numerous exhibitions, including Mine Teams at Apex Art, New York (2003), and Becoming a Place at Proje4L (2001). His recent writings and interviews have been featured in magazines such as Flash Art, New Art Examiner, and Art Asia Pacific. He has participated in several exhibition catalogues, including those for the XLVIII Venice Biennale (1999) and the Second Johannesburg Biennial (1997), and the recent publications Words of Wisdom: A Curator’s Vade Mecum (Independent Curators International, New York) and Fresh Cream: 10 curators, 100 artists (Phaidon Press). Kortun is also the editor of RG, an annual contemporary art magazine published in Turkish. Otori Hidenaga is a theater scholar and critic based in Tokyo, Japan. He is artistic director of the Laokoon Festival 2002, Kampnagel, Hamburg; vice president of Kyoto Performing Arts Center, Kyoto University of Arts and Design; president of Contemporary Asian Theatre Study Group, Tokyo; a part-time lecturer in theater at Waseda University, Tokyo; and a member of Asian Art Net, Hong Kong and Tokyo. Otori has been a chief editor of numerous theater magazines, including Theater Arts and Chimaera, and is currently the chief editor of Performing Arts. His latest publication is Reverberation Machines: The Words of Richard Foreman (Tokyo, 2000). Baraka Sele is curator and producer of the NJPAC World Festival at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center, Newark, a year-round festival featuring performances by artists from around the world, complemented by residencies. Prior to her current position, Sele was the director of Africa Exchange at 651 Arts Center, Brooklyn, New York (1995–1998); the first artistic director of performing arts at the Yerba Buena Arts Center, San Francisco (1992–1995); vice president of performing arts for the Houston International Festival (1985–1992); and general manager of SumArts, a multidisciplinary contemporary arts organization. Sele has also taught as adjunct faculty at Texas Southern University (English) and the New College of California (Art and Social Change). In addition to working as a performing arts consultant, curator, producer, and presenter, Sele has served on numerous local, national, and international advisory committees.

Curatorial Travel: Singapore / Japan / Korea / South Africa / Turkey / Belgium / Brazil / China / Cuba / Czech Republic / Netherlands / Mexico / India / Germany / United States / Argentina

Philippe Vergne, Visual Arts Curator: This subversion is not necessarily one that derives from the perception of a specific injustice. It is a subversion that suggests that there are no permanent models, no acquired tastes or situations, that everything is subject to change and nothing is a given. This subversion is a state of permanent alert that proposes the arts as a site for infinite experimentation, the location of a quiet resistance against barbarism and against all attempts to codify and systemize the world. The effect of globalization on artistic practices might be to place at the center of the arts and their institutions the very question of their own object(ive)s.