At the European world fairs in the first half of the 20th century, it was extremely popular to exhibit indigenous dancers as examples of ‘the Other’ and expose them to the gaze of the spectators. The simultaneous development of innovative dance techniques reflected this notion of the ‘Other’, as did the conviction of modern Orientalism that a strict distinction must be made between categories such as art and folklore, theatre and ritual, contemporary and traditional. The event suggests that these models of European modernism based on mutual exclusivity are present until today in global, contemporary performance practices and curatorial decisions. Based on the examples of a German and a Korean curatorial project, it is to be discussed which orientalist patterns of thought stemming from the past continue to determine the process of curating and thus the programming of international festivals.


Jee-Ae Lim (KR) dancer, choreographer
Helly Minarti (UK) dance scholar, curator, author
Anna Wagner (DE) dance curator
Eike Wittrock (DE) dance scholar, dance historian, curator



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