About the part that art plays in a globalising society

Framer Framed

Dutch flag from the “Gravesteen” juridical faculty, Leiden, 1930’s (loan Christiaan Vogelaar, Amsterdam)

9 Feb 2012
10:00 - 05:00

Symposium: Contested History

Framer Framed and the East Indies Memorial Center organizes in collaboration with the Reinwardt Academy the symposium Contested History on the representation of the Dutch-Indonesian history in museums. The symposium Contested History will take place in the conference center Kumpulan Bronbeek in Arnhem on Thursday February 9th, 2012.

Different views

This symposium takes place on the occasion of the exhibition The Story of the Dutch East Indies on the colonial history of the Netherlands in the former Dutch East Indies. This exhibition is a coproduction by the Dutch East Indies Memorial Center and Museum Bronbeek. These two institutions have different views on how this history should be interpreted and represented, respectively a civilian versus a military perspective. The Story of the Dutch East Indies interlaces these two historical views, and thus provides a good case for organizing a symposium on the representation of the Dutch-Indonesian history in the museum context.


Yvonne Genugten, Director of The Dutch East Indies Memorial Center which guests the exhibition The Story of the Dutch East Indies.

Rob van Ginkel, senior researcher at the department of Sociology and Anthropology, University of Amsterdam. He is the author of the book Around the silence: Memorial Culture in the Netherlands.

Liesbeth Zegveld is Professor of International Humanitarian Law specialises in legal remedies for war victims, in particular the Rights of Women and Children, at Leiden University. She is Adviser to the widows of Rawagedeh (Indonesia), whose husbands were executed by Dutch soldiers in 1947, in a civil action brought against the Kingdom of the Netherlands.

Stef Scagliola is a former researcher in oral history at the Veterans Institute and author of the book Last van de Oorlog (Trouble from the War) on the way the specific issue of the Rawagede massacre eventually found a place in the exhibition. With this example she will explain that what you see in museums is determined by the questions and interests that are presently at play. From the vast mosaic of perspectives in reality choices are always made. This is done by various groups with a intermediate position, making it a story filled with tension concerning what is right and wrong, about who has a right to speak. And all this changes over time.

Meta Knol is director of the Stedelijk Museum de Lakenhal in Leiden and former curator of the Centraal Museum in Utrecht, where she curated the exhibition Beyond the Dutch. Indonesia, the Netherlands and the visual arts from 1900 until now.

Rapti Golder-Miedema is the assistant curator of the Museum of Ethnology in Leiden. The Museum of Ethnology has started an intensive cooperation with Jakarta. She will talk about the The New Museum, a collaboration project between the National Indonesia Museum and Museum of Ethnology and how this cooperation leads to curatorial and representational policies.

Pamela Pattynama is Professor by Special Appointment of Colonial and Postcolonial Literature and Cultural History. Her areas of interest include colonial and postcolonial and memory studies, photography, gender and interraciality in literature and film. She applied her curatorial approach from the Indisch Wetenschappelijk Instituut (IWI) collection also to the permanent exhibition of the Dutch East Indies Memorial Center by placing it in the perspective of postcolonial nostalgia. How could the cooperation between the Dutch East Indies Memorial Centre and Museum Bronbeek relate to thinking about representation of postcolonial memorial communities?

Miriam Shatanawi is curator, specializing on the Middle East and North Africa, at the Tropenmuseum, Amsterdam for which she has curated several exhibitions. In her book “Islam in the picture – Muslim Art and culture worldwide” she questions the framing of the Indonesian collection as non-religious. How does an institution relate to such a critique and how can it be represented?

Date Thursday, February 9th 2012
Time 10.00 – 16.30 uur

Kumpulan Bronbeek
Velperweg 147, Arnhem

€ 10,00 incl. lunch

Indonesia / Colonial history / Contested Heritage /


Rob van Ginkel


Yvonne van Genugten


Rapti Golder-Miedema


Pamela Pattynama


Wim Manuhutu

PhD Candidate

Meta Knol

Art historian

Mirjam Shatanawi

Curator, Author