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LETTERS

Artforum March 2014 cover: Terry Adkins, Muffled Drums (detail), 2003–13, eleven found bass drums, mufflers, steel, 30' 3“ x 3' 1/2” x 1' 7".

IT WAS EXCITING to find Artforum opening a debate on exhibition histories in relation to art history, via Claire Bishop’s review of the two-volume Making Art Global [March 2014], the second and fourth books in Afterall’s Exhibition Histories series. The Afterall approach to the new field differs somewhat from Bishop’s, and I thought some comments on the distinctions might be of interest.

The plurality of exhibition histories, in place of a monolithic exhibition history, is important to the Afterall model. Something of this plurality is represented in an important early book Bishop does not mention in her summary of the early literature in the field, perhaps only because she restricts herself to books in English. Die Kunst der Ausstellung (The Art of Exhibitions, 1991), edited by Bernd Klüser and Katharina Hegewisch, is significant for us because, unlike Bruce Altshuler’s ensuing

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