Tuesday Dec 13, 2022

Episode 5 - How to Think Like a Curator with Lillian O’Brien Davis

Have you ever wondered what an art curator does – or what you might learn from one? 

If you have (or even if you haven’t!) it turns out there are TONS of things thought leaders can learn from a professional curator, like: 

  • How to bring together multiple voices; for example, if you’re putting together a conference line-up, or writing a book with multiple authors, or curating content for your blog.
  • How to collaborate and co-create (and why it’s worth doing)
  • Why it’s worth taking the time to enjoy consuming content, not just making your own. (Yes, this might just give you permission to watch reality TV!)
  • How to build time for thinking and reflecting into your day
  • How to get people to come out to your event or see your work
  • How to make complex ideas accessible and understandable, without dumbing them down
  • How to recognize and give due credit to the people who have influenced your work
  • How to deal when you DON’T get the response you want from the thing you’ve made
  • How to speak up about difficult subjects (and help other people do the same). 

… and so much more

In this episode, I chat with Lillian O’Brien Davis — a curator and writer currently based in Toronto, ON. 

Lillian is the Curator of Exhibitions and Public Programs at Gallery 44 Centre for Contemporary Photography. She has curated projects at the Art Museum at the University of Toronto, Susan Hobbs Gallery, the MacKenzie Art Gallery, SUPPORT Gallery and the School of Art Gallery at the University of Manitoba. Her writing has appeared in RACAR, BlackFlash magazine, Canadian Art online, C magazine, the Brooklyn Rail, Peripheral Review and Insight Magazine. 

In this conversation we discover a great deal of cross-over between thought leadership and curation! 

Towards the end of the conversation, we also get vulnerable – we talk about the struggles of working behind-the-scenes, and what it was like for Lillian to publish an article that had the impact to alter the course of her career. 

There’s a ton of stuff in this episode to help you think about storytelling in new ways. 

Listen now!

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