Clémentine Deliss
The Metabolic Museum


In conversation with writer Tom McCarthy, Clémentine Deliss will present her publication The Metabolic Museum.


15 September 20, 7 pm 

Venue: KW Courtyard 

Admission free

In English


Due to COVID-19 restrictions the capacity is limited, please note that no further reservations can be made. There will be an audio recording of the book launch available on the website after the event.


Audio recording of the event


For quite some time now, ethnographic museums in Europe have been compelled to legitimate themselves. Their exhibition-making has become a topic of discussion, as has the contentious history of their collections, which have come about through colonial appropriation. Clearly, this cannot continue. That the situation can be different is something that Clémentine Deliss explores in her current publication. She offers an intriguing mix of autobiographically-informed novel and conceptual thesis on contemporary art and anthropology. Reflections on her own work while she was Director of Frankfurt’s Weltkulturen Museum (Museum of World Cultures) are interwoven with the explorations of influential filmmakers, artists and writers. She introduces the Metabolic Museum as an interventionist laboratory for remediating ethnographic collections for future generations.


“I began to recognize the museum as a complex body with a severely ailing metabolism, afflicted organs, and blocked channels of circulation. To transform this condition would require careful nurturing, but also radical operations,” Deliss says. 


Dr. Clémentine Deliss is a curator, cultural historian, and publisher of artists’ books. In her former role as Director of the Weltkulturen Museum in Frankfurt (2010–2015 ), as a curator, and as a professor and researcher at eminent institutes and academies, Deliss focuses on transdisciplinary and transcultural exchanges in contemporary art practice. Currently, Clémentine Deliss is Guest Professor at the Academy of Fine Art, Hamburg, Co-Director of LagosPhoto20, Mentor of BPA // Program for artists, and since May 2020 Associate Curator at KW.



<p><em>The Metabolic Museum</em> is<em> </em>published by Hatje Cantz. </p>


The Metabolic Museum is published by Hatje Cantz.