May 27-28, 2024

Transmitting the Intangible

Transmitting the Intangible: Indigenous Perspectives on Sustaining Memory and Contemporary Culture

A two-day hybrid event, blending both online and offline components, featuring presentations, performances, and discussions.

Date: May 27th - 28th, 2024

Admission: Free (registration required)

Venue: Nordic Black Theater (Oslo, Norway) and Online (live streaming)


Art and other cultural manifestations produced today increasingly expose the limits of prevailing approaches to conservation, archiving and collections management rooted in European, settler colonialist ontologies and epistemologies. These tend to privilege objects that can be physically or digitally collected, often overlooking networks of human and more-than-human relations and other cultural expressions and forms of knowledge that evade capture and domination by Western museological apparatuses of acquisition and archiving.

In conjunction with the ten-year mark of Future Library, this virtual and in-person symposium will bring together a diverse group of artists, archivists, conservators, curators, library and museum professionals, thinkers, and creative practitioners working both in and outside of academia, with the aim of centering Indigenous epistemologies, ontologies, and experiences, and decentering Western, settler colonial logics and methods around the perpetuation and transmission of culture and knowledge.

The symposium is open format with artistic performances, interventions, talks, and discussions taking place over two days, both online and in-person in Oslo.

Themes and topics will include:

  • Transmitting and activating living heritage and the intangible and ephemeral aspects of art and cultural heritage
  • Ecological stewardship, long-termism, and intergenerational justice
  • Loss, loss compensation, care, and repair
  • The role and generative capacity of ritual, ceremony, and storytelling
  • The ways in which Indigenous knowledge and cultural expressions are incommensurable with non-Indigenous, settler colonial logics and methods of musealization, conservation, and archiving

Speakers and Contributors:

Jo-ann Archibald, Rebecca Barnott-Clement, Tharron Bloomfield, Aaliyah Jade Bradbury, Maritea Dæhlin, Coby Edgar, Liisa-Rávná Finborg, Gunvor Guttorm, Juanita Kelly-Mundine, Anne May Olli, Katie Paterson, Saara-Maija Pesonen, Solomon Ratt, Dylan Robinson, Nathan Sentance, Asti Sherring, Joel Taylor, Nina Tonga, Kanako Uzawa, Marita Isobel Solberg, Elin Már Øyen Vister

The full symposium program is now available HERE.

Cultural safety measures

We are very committed to creating an environment of solidarity and mutual care for all contributors and audiences over the two days. Some of the topics and conversations may be or become emotionally charged, and/or may speak to or surface trauma. There will be a dedicated, private, decompression space on-site throughout the two days for anyone’s use, at any point.

Invitation for cultural considerations

Given how this symposium will bring together both Indigenous and non-Indigenous individuals from varied cultural backgrounds and positionalities, please accept this invitation to propose any additional cultural connections, materials or cultural safety measures, for yourselves or others.

We also invite you to propose any gestures of care you wish to see implemented that would help create a supporting atmosphere for both online and in-person presenters and attendees.

We will do our best to accommodate any and all of your proposals.

Organizers and Program Committee:

Transmitting the Intangible symposium is organized by Nasjonalmuseet, RiddoDuottarMuseat, and Future Library Trust.

Brian Castriota, National Galleries Scotland / University College London

Jina Chang, National Museum of Art, Architecture, and Design (Nasjonalmuseet)

Rebecca Gordon, Independent researcher

Ayesha Fuentes, University of Cambridge

Maren Haugfos, Deichman Library

Anne Beate Hovind, Future Library Trust

Anne May Olli, RiddoDuottarMuseat

Anja Sandtrø, National Museum of Art, Architecture, and Design (Nasjonalmuseet)

Asti Sherring, National Museum of Australia / Australian National University

Transmitting the Intangible symposium is supported by Nordic Black Theatre, Fritt Ord, Nasjonalmuseet, and Sámediggi.


Hybrid event

Nordic Black Theatre

8, Hollendergata Oslo Norway, 0190

Registration period

April 1, 2024 - AM 12:00 until May 26, 2024 - PM 11:00

Contact us

If you have any questions, please contact .

Powered by