The partnership between the UvA and the Stedelijk Museum is a natural one. The Stedelijk Museum, which was founded in 1895, is the largest museum of modern and contemporary art and design in the Netherlands, and its aims include managing, preserving and displaying the collection, curating unique exhibitions and organising experimental educational programmes. The museum increasingly aims to play a pioneering role in the field of museum research, and to lead the way at international level through the experimental and progressive ways in which research is embedded in the museum and through critical reflection in this context. The interaction between visual arts, audio-visual culture, new media technology and museum practice has been a key focus in this context for a long time now.
Based on an interdisciplinary approach, Schavemaker’s research will focus on the relation between art and museum practice and the emergence of television, video and digital media, amongst others. This ranges from the way in which artists reflect on the online visual culture (internet/social media) in their work to the impact this has on museum programmes and acquisition policies (what does displaying an online artwork in the museum and preserving it forever involve?). The wide range of ways in which new media technologies are used to enrich the museum experience and make it more accessible (e.g. multimedia tours and robots that allow people to visit the museum remotely) are also a key feature of Schavemaker’s research.
Schavemaker will teach on UvA’s Master’s and Research Master's programmes in the field of media, culture and art.
Margriet Schavemaker has worked at the Stedelijk Museum since 2009, first as head of Collections and Research, then as curator and head of Research and Publications (from 2012 to 2015) and finally as Manager of Education, Interpretation and Publications (since 2015). Prior to her career at the Stedelijk Museum, Schavemaker worked at the UvA, as assistant professor in the Media and Culture department, as lecturer in Art History and as coordinator of the Art History programme. She also obtained a doctorate from the UvA; her thesis was on the meaning of language in the visual arts of the 1960s. Schavemaker has also lectured at the Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences (AUAS) and the Gerrit Rietveld Academy.
Schavemaker was a visiting fellow at the Netherlands Institute for Advanced Study (NIAS) from 2013 to 2014. This resulted, amongst other things, in the launch of the peer-reviewed journal Stedelijk Studies, of which Schavemaker has been editor-in-chief since its launch in 2014.
Schavemaker has written many publications on contemporary art and theory. She also organises leading public programmes, such as the lecture series ‘Right about Now: Art and Theory since the 1990s’ (2006-2007), ‘Now is the Time: Art and Theory in the 21st Century’ (2008-2009) and 'Facing Forward. Art and Theory from a Future Perspective' (2011-2102). As curator, she has organised a number of different exhibitions, including ‘The Stedelijk Museum & The Second World War’ (2015), ‘ZERO: Let Us Explore the Stars’ (2015) and ‘Jean Tinguely: Machine Spectacle’ (2016).
Schavemaker works as advisor for the Mondriaan Fund and is a member of the Supervisory Board of Metropolis M magazine, the Jan van Eyck Academy and the Unseen Foundation.