Curatorview [Alfredo Cramerotti]

Check-in Budapest curatorial visitor program: Alfredo Cramerotti, Director, MOSTYN ǀ Wales

Posted in nEws and rEleases by Curatorview on November 18, 2013
18th November 2013 (Monday), 6 p.m
Ludwig Museum Library
1095 Budapest, Komor Marcell utca, 1., 2nd floor
Budapest, Hungary

Whence the Future? – lecture by Alfredo Cramerotti

Alfredo Cramerotti (MOSTYN ǀ Wales) will deliver a lecture on the idea of time, knowledge and future.  Following a text co-authored with Jean-Paul Martinon (Goldsmiths College, University of London) and published in ‘The Curatorial. A Philosophy of Curating’ (Bloosmbury, 2013), Cramerotti asks us to abandon our androids, tablets, computers in order to rethink how the future comes?  His reply is that it comes from the immemorial past that old stories (for instance, in newspapers) always seem to hold ready for us to discover.  Once opened, the work then consists in curating for ourselves our own future.  With Cramerotti, the curatorial knowledge becomes the way in which the future is articulated.

The lecture will be held in English.


Posted in Thoughts.Coaching by Curatorview on May 3, 2008

Ok, I got a crush on Seth Godin’s insights. This one you can find here. It’s about Edgecraft, which – according to him – is an iterative process that is much easier for an organization to embrace than brainstorming. Off we go:

It’s a mistake to try to champion much beyond your reach.

There are hundreds of available edges, things you can add to, subtract from or do to your product or service. Find an edge and go all the way to it. Going partway is time-consuming and expensive—and it doesn’t work very well. Going all the way to the edge is the only way to jolt the user into noticing what you’ve done. If they notice you, they’re one step closer to talking about you.

It’s all marketing now. The organizations that win will be the ones that realize that all they do is create things worth talking about.

And another little bit from the same book:

It’s not that people somehow lose their ability to be creative when they’re in an environment in which they feel safe. It’s that they ignore the creative ideas that naturally occur to them and fight the changes championed by others.

They like things the way they are, and they can’t resist the urge to defend the status quo. The challenge of the champion is to help people who are already creative to take advantage of their talent. By selling the dream and fighting the status quo, we can free people who have been lulled into a false sense of security.

And again:

You only have one boss, and if she doesn’t believe you can do it or that it’s worth doing, you’re stuck. If you can’t make the fulcrum work in the eyes of that key decision maker, your work is much more difficult. But there are hundreds of sources of capital in the outside world, and when you approach them as an entrepreneur, you’re more likely to have the posture of the champion. They want to believe that you’re the person who can do this, and thus you’re more likely to persuade them that you’re the guy.

That doesn’t necessarily mean the answer is to go outside and start something new. It means, instead, that you and your boss (or your co-workers, or your employees) should sit down together and figure out which parts of the fulcrum are out of whack.

Dramatic changes. Things that may very well be unattainable. Things that require not incremental improvements or changes, but significant quantum leaps in the way you organize, create and deliver what you do. If you can’t find a scary edge, then you haven’t found an edge, have you?

No use going to an edge that all your competition is going to as well. That’s not an edge. That’s the middle. Growth only comes from the leap to the remarkable.

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Coaching your career

Posted in Thoughts.Coaching by Curatorview on April 22, 2008

Excerpt of article appeared on the Guardian, written by Lynsey Mellows:

If you are contemplating a change in career or feeling stagnant in your job, employing a professional career coach maybe just what you need to help you make an informed decision about your future.

Career coaching has experienced an explosive growth in recent years. Not to be mistaken for life coaching, which concentrates on personal development, career coaching is all about equipping individuals with practical guidance on how to move up, across or into a completely new field altogether.

Traditionally an employee’s career path has been left in the hands of a human resources department, but with more and more individuals taking control of their careers the role of the coach is becoming paramount […]
“Some clients want to move on from where they are now, but are unclear about what is the right move for them. Others know exactly what they want, but need help in convincing employers to hire them and some clients want help in managing a challenging situation at work,” said Corinne [Mills, managing director of Personal Career Management]

“We aim to help people understand what we call their ‘career capital’ – in other words, their transferable skills, knowledge, abilities and personal strengths. People massively underestimate their abilities. We use this knowledge to help them explore and decide on their options and then market themselves effectively to employers.”

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Posted in shortEssays/cortiSaggi [English/Italian], Thoughts.Coaching by Curatorview on December 10, 2007

Is it really true that knowledge is something superior to other ‘goods’ of life? That is – by far – the most desirable of things? Having the access to an item may represent an advantage; even if is not a goal per se, but rather a tool. The ultimate aim of mankind is happiness, not goods: on this we might all agree. Now, what about knowledge? It seems that is the only good which don’t bring, along with its satisfaction, some disadvantages.

Let’s make two examples: in medicine, for instance: the fact that humans can cure themselves from flu, it’s definitely an advantage. But it also bring the need to cure themselves from any other type of illnesses, even those that once where not contemplated, those that we didn’t care about, because they could not be considered in terms of advantage/disadvantage, but as facts of life. Now, the fact that we can save our life from flu brings also the need to save ourselves from all other types of illness. If we cannot satisfy this need, we perceived it as a disadvantage. The threshold of happiness has been moved forward.

Same thing with transportation: when cars didn’t exist, they couldn’t solve all the problems, which they solve today. But now a car has become the base, without which one has a disadvantage. A car is, so to say, the base to be happy (take it not literally), and once achieved this basic need, we will look forward to ‘step up’ to the next one, maybe a bigger car, or maybe two cars in the family, and so on. This is valid for all the items and services of technical progress: from the satisfaction of a need, springs up immediately other needs to satisfy that we didn’t have before.

The degree of happiness doesn’t depend on which step of the social ladder we are: everyone can feel happy or sad at whatever social level. We cannot say that humanity in the past was happier or sadder than today. Reading, for instance, the ancient texts, it seems that the level of happiness was more or less the same, even with far less items and technological progress.

The fact is that happiness is achievable only in the brief moment of acquisition of an item, or a service: when one was ill, and is cured; when one needed a car, and got it. The only brief lapse of happiness is attainable in the passage from one state to the other, and not from the fact of being in one state. After that, we immediately start to perceive the need of going further onto the next level. That means, the satisfaction of a need brings always the disadvantage of creating another need.

Regarding our first concern, knowledge, it seems that it is immune from such a thing: to know something is a linear process, it doesn’t bring to us the t unbearable feeling of having to progress to the next level. But it does something else. If it’s true that the less one knows, the better s/he lives (because the more one knows, the more s/he perceives the bad things of life), it’s also true that knowledge is something that once achieved, it cannot be undone. To put it in simple terms: we cannot go back to a previous state of ignorance, because we don’t want to. Knowledge is an irreversible (linear) process: who knows, wants not to know less. Nobody wants to decrease his or her level of knowledge, even if it would bring a major happiness. We can try for ourselves: let’s think about a happy person with less knowledge, less acculturated than we are, and then let’s ask ourselves if we would exchange with him or her: we wouldn’t. We are not able to renounce to our knowledge.

No matter its relationship with happiness, knowledge is a progressive entity, it’s ‘oriented’, so to say: it’s not neutral; humans don’t want to renounce to it, whatever it brings along with, even unhappiness. The good thing, on the other hand, is that it doesn’t originate other needs: it’s a type of acquisition, which is more stable. But as soon as we know more, we would never accept not to have it.

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