Why It Matters: Cultural Diversity in Curatorial Acting


_ Aisha Abassi: Diversity begins with acknowledgement

The fight for diversity stems from a need for richness, justice, and human evolution. Awareness, inclusivity, and diversity go hand-in-hand, but none of these things come passively. In the same way that biodiversity increases the resilience of flora and fauna, socio-cultural diversity enriches interactions and outcomes in all fields. The fostering of diversity in spaces, culture, and decision-making requires an active and ever-evolving approach that challenges current systems and conventional methods. While there is no one-size-fits-all solution to building inclusive spaces and conversations, prioritizing fair access is crucial in planning and creating for a world diverse in values, experiences, and beliefs. Due to my ethnocultural background and movement across states and countries, my upbringing taught me how differences in history or tradition largely influence interaction, meaning, and priorities. Diversity of thought offers individuals an opportunity to step out of their own mindset and begin to understand the reality and needs of others. An active pursuit of diversity and inclusion fosters openness, empathy, and understanding between communities large and small. Diversity begins with acknowledgement, it is maintained through meaningful and authentic interaction and ends in richer and more inclusive results.

_ Chiraz Mosbah: Diversity is our heritage

La diversité culturelle est un pont de communication entre les sociétés avec une multiplicité de cultures qui se transmettent à travers les temps. Cultural diversity is a bridge of communication between societies with a multiplicity of cultures that are transmitted through time.

_ Detlef Hartung: Languages mirror the diversity of our societies

Kulturelle Vielfalt ist ohne Sprache/n, deren Pflege, Bewahrung und Entwicklung nicht denkbar. Sprachen sind eine der Grundlagen unserer Kommunikation und Verständigung. Sie sind Mittler und Spiegel unserer Kultur und ihrer Vielfalt. Ihr Wandel ist Zeichen unserer Entwicklung und unserer Geschichte. Cultural diversity is unimaginable without languages, their maintenance, preservation and development. Through languages we form the basis of our communication and understanding. They are mediators and mirrors of our culture and its diversity. Their change is a sign of our development and our history.

_ Ons Kammoun: Mind-set for an ever-changing world

Society is diversity. The population of any country is diverse. Imagine the chaos if everyone had the same passion, opinion, or even gene. In a society, every individual comes with his or her full-package: values, backgrounds, ways of thinking or doing things and life experiences. For this reason, we should value and respect what makes us unique in a safe, nurturing environment where people can communicate, share and learn from each other in order to enhance dialogue and avoid being stuck in a vicious circle. Thus, multiculturalism is the essence of equity that enhances innovation, creativity and productivity. Consequently, the more diverse a society is, the more it thrives, grows and fights stagnancy.

_ Irene Urrutia: Resisting simplification

In order to be effective, diversity must be operationalized: as a society, we need to generate methodologies of inclusion and justice that resist totalization and instead enable diversified ways of being.

_ Imen Bahri: Empowered by difference

Cultural diversity involves acceptation of alterity and brings about the enrichment of the self, more openness and more tolerance. Most importantly, it offers dignity to the marginalised minorities. Besides, economically, diversity implies the exchange of skills, know-how and cultural properties that help to empower businesses.

_ Samir Bahri: Expanding intellectually

La diversité culturelle est une source de richesse et une nécessité pour l’être humain à travers laquelle la communauté humaine est reconnue dans ses concepts généraux en termes de valeurs, de pensées, d’expérience partagée et de mémoire historique car, d’une manière ou d’une autre, elle favorise la conscience de soi, de l’éducation et du développement intellectuel. Cultural diversity is a source of richness and a necessity for the human being through which the human community is recognized in its general concepts in terms of values, thoughts, shared experience and historical memory because, in one way or another, it fosters self-awareness, education and intellectual development.

_ Syrine Siala: Expanding beyond our limits

التنوع يخلق حوار ويخليك زادة تدخل بعضك. مافما حتى حد كيما لاخر، والحاجة هذي تزيد تظهر كيف نتخلطوا. أنك تدخل في نقاش على الثقافة ولا الدين ولا المجتمع ينجم يكون مخطر إذا كان يتعدا الخط اللي نسميوه “ليميت”. وقتها من رايي، التنوع معاتش ينفع. التنوع سلاح ذو حدين، انو يكون ينفع ولا يضر مربوط بنا.من وجهة نظر “القيم الفني” التنوع عندو أهمية كبيرة ياسر. يخلينا ننفتح و نعرفو شنوا قاعد يصير فالعالم. التجديد و الابداع من أهم الحاجات ألي إنجموا نوصلولها La diversité génère dialogue et confusion dans une société. Nul n’est identique à l’autre et cela s’intensifie lorsqu’on s’entremêle. Cependant, une interaction; qu’elle soit culturelle, ethnique, sociétale… au sein d’un même groupe peut s’avérer risquée si elle dépasse ce fin trait qu’on appellera “limite”. A cet instant, la diversité devient ineffective. Ce caractère à la fois enrichissant et inhibiteur dépend de chacun de nous. D’un point de vue curatorial, l’apport de la diversité est de poids. Elle nous permet d’avoir une ouverture et une connaissance d’autrui et de ce qui se passe ailleurs. Innovation et créativité sont à la clé. Diversity generates dialogue and confusion in society. No one is identical to the other, and this intensifies when we mingle. However, interaction, whether cultural, ethnic, societal… among the same group can be risky if it goes beyond this fine line, which we might call “limit”. At this point, diversity becomes ineffective. This enriching yet inhibiting character depends on each of us.

_ Salma Kossemtini: Empathy is a key competence for the future

Au niveau sociétal, la diversité culturelle est un facteur clé qui catalyse la volonté d’aller vers les autres et leur acceptation. Elle nous permet de percevoir la société à un niveau micro et macro grâce aux différences de milieux et de rituels. Cela génère, à mon avis, une pensée analytique et réflexive marquée par l’empathie et la conscience de l’autre, loin de la pensée individualiste. At the societal level, cultural diversity is a key factor that catalyses our will to reach out to others and their acceptance. It enables us to perceive society with all its differences on micro and macro levels. This generates analytical and reflective thinking marked by empathy and awareness of one other far from individualistic thinking.

_ Katerina Kallivroussi: Potential for a solidary way of being together

Περιμένοντας τους Βαρβάρους (en: Waiting for the Barbarians) _ The importance of cultural diversity lies in the potentialities that it opens up for a more inclusive, egalitarian, and solidary way of being together.

_ Amin Gharbi: Diversity strengths our communities

Several factors can make a community grow strong. Diversity is the most important one. Actually, by embracing all the differences that we can find in a community, and learning from them that we can apprehend the multiple layers of the issues we face in life. More clearly, diversity is the reason why we can look at realities from more than one point of view, and thus, understand better what usually appears to be complex.

_ Aisha Abassi: Curation can be a tool of justice

Curators are cultural workers, organizers, and disseminators. They can be artists, scientists, and historians. My motivations as a curator are one and the same as that of my praxis as a member of civic society. Professional work can be a platform for activism. Ground zero for change.

Curation can be a tool of justice. It can inject equal opportunity in small quantities, intervening in otherwise hegemonic systems, or it as can forego cooperation with the institution entirely. Curation can act as resistance. The smallest act of prioritizing not simply equality, but equity, can begin a ripple effect of radical change.

This being said, diversity is a habit. Long-term dialogue is inherent to meaningful exchange. You must work with, in, and for a community to serve it. Nothing of value comes easily.

_ Bettina Pelz: Cultural diversity is the immune system of our societies

The present global health emergency reminds us to enhance our care for bio- and for cultural diversity. Viruses do not spread widely in intact habitats, but rather easily in disturbed ecosystems with low biodiversity. Likewise, cultural diversity protects us from radicalism, terror, and totalitarianism.


_ Louise Baranger: Mediating mixed realities

Cultural diversity offers a multitude of realities on our planet earth, which together make up the world. The real one in all its complexity and beauty. As curators, it is our duty to open these different windows on the universe and allow everyone to glimpse the divergent realities of our world.

_ Ons Kammoun: Curators are changemakers

Curators decide what makes a team diverse, and there are no general rules. It can go from the differences that we don’t choose (gender, age, nationality, ethnicity) to the ones that can be altered (education, background, sexual orientation). With their way of an inclusive or universal approach, they coin concepts and processes, exhibitions and art mediation programs, documentation and discourses.

_ Dorrine Nasri: Common ground

To enrich oneself: it is important to come into contact with diametrically opposed individuals, but to be able to do so it is essential that our society offers us a favorable ground for these interactions, where the individual is not afraid to open up, to interact, to give, to receive, and to create.

_ Imen Cherif: Enhancing democratic culture

Cultural diversity is an important factor in accessibility and art democratization.

_ Salma Kossemtini: Broadening curatorial processing

A curator draws from the culture s/he is living in, hir background and the scene in which s/he is immersed. Hir curatorial approach is shaped by these experiences, values, and contexts. To meet beyond one’s own framework, cultural diversity is a crucial element in broadening curatorial approaches, in processing concepts and in the choice of artists. As well, for the way of generating public interest in artistic production and all kinds of audience development. Je crois que le curateur puise dans sa culture, son milieu et la scène dans laquelle il baigne, son approche serait à son tour façonnée par ces paramètres. Ainsi, je pense que la diversité culturelle serait un élément crucial pour élargir les approches, le choix des artistes et susciter l’intérêt pour la production artistique.

_ Irene Urrutia: Stretching into the unknown

Curatorial responsibility must be based on diversity. Una práctica curatorial responsable debe fundamentarse en la diversidad: atender al contexto en el que trabajamos, y reflexionar sobre quién tiene voz y visibilidad en el arte, y quién no.

_ Manel Ben Ali: Highlighting identities

Curators build bridges between artists and audiences, giving the artists the opportunity to highlight their identity, their artistic practices and cultural features. For the audience, they shape a microscope of all what society is made of.

_ Haifa Mahmoud: Essence of curatorial acting

Diversity is being proactive in listening, accepting the difference and the new ideas which encourage creativity. It’s an essential element to proceed in a curatorial approach.

_ Syrine Siala: Life-long learning for open-mindedness

From a curatorial point of view, the intake of diversity is weighty. It allows us to have an openness and knowledge of the other and of what is happening elsewhere, innovation and creativity can take place.

_ Amin Gharbi: Anchor point of success

I think that a curator is supposed to be able to think and compose by relating different realms and spheres (artistic, scientific, social…). As cultural diversity grows strong, it enriches these spheres. Which makes diversity a key point for the success and prosperity of his/her work.


_ Irene Urrutia: Shaping curatorial attitude

TASAWAR nos permite desarrollar herramientas para una práctica curatorial flexible y sensible. Participating in a program like TASAWAR demonstrates that diversity is more than enriching; it’s an essential basis for a relevant, critical and open curatorial praxis.

_ Chiraz Mosbah: Growing in international settings

Le programme curatorial TASAWAR est une belle opportunité pour un dialogue et un échange culturels enrichissants entre une trentaine de participants de plusieurs nationalités et profils. The TASAWAR curatorial program is a great opportunity for enriching cultural dialogue and exchange between some thirty participants of several nationalities and profiles.

_ Frankie Macaulay: Finding pleasure in complexity

cultural exchange

_ Ons Kammoun: All being different allows me to be unique

We are an international collective from several continents, with a broad variety of backgrounds, and with different experiences. What might look like big distances between us, only shows how far we can stretch. Our diversity enriches us. As a matter of fact, we benefit from other viewpoints, discoveries and lessons whether from the content of the sessions, the network or the fruitful discussions between the participants. And, let me add, that in this environment, everybody learns in hir own way and changes differently than the other over the time of the study program. For me, this means that our diversity helps me to understand myself better and enabled me to make finer choices about who I want to be in the future.

_ Amin Gharbi: Rooted in Diversity

Six months ago, the TASAWAR program was just a group of international people from different cultural/social/academic backgrounds that came together in a training program. As time went by, we became a collective of professionals and an open community with an ongoing learning process. These aspects grew strong thanks to the diversity in the program.


Malika Hagemann