Kate Brehme is an Australian independent curator and arts educator based in Berlin. She has worked internationally on a variety of projects, exhibitions and events and since 2008 runs Contemporary Art Exchange, a curatorial platform providing professional development opportunities for emerging and young artists. Her project and research themes include place and cultural identity, labour and work, globalisation, disability and socially engaged practices. Kate is also co-founder of Berlinklusion, Berlin’s Network for Accessibility in Arts and Culture, lectures at the Piet Zwart Institute in Rotterdam and for NODE Center for Curatorial Studies, and recently completed her doctorate at the Center for Metropolitan Studies at Berlin’s Technical University where she undertook research into the contemporary art biennial and urban space.
It has been long held that in the field of contemporary art, extensive working and travelling internationally has become a measure of success of one’s career. While the COVID-19 pandemic caused temporary disruption for many non-disabled arts workers in this way, it also highlighted the existing barriers to participating in the international art system for disabled arts workers and arts workers with children alike. Access and inclusion have long played a role within my curatorial practice, whether ensuring publics have various access routes into my exhibitions, providing artists with disabilities better access to the cultural sphere as professionals, or whether it is in working with (disabled and non-disabled) artists who deal with accessibility or disability as a theme. Furthermore, as a woman and mother with a disability, defining, understanding and gaining access governs all areas of my life. Thus, for my residency, I propose to probe the field of contemporary art to explore what extent other identities, such as race, class or gender – and in particular, motherhood – intersect with disabled experiences.
Kate Brehme’s residency is realised in the context of the HICP – Helsinki International Curatorial Programme, a collaboration between Frame Contemporary Art Finland and HIAP.