‘Skeletons, Stories, and Social Bodies Conference’

Joan Smith, Linda Fibiger and John Harries talked about diverse and at times conflicting perspectives on and questions about human remains and the ethics of their acquisition, and particularly their curation and display at the ‘Skeletons, Stories, and Social Bodies Conference’ at Southampton University (held March 20th to 22nd, 2018).

Public Art in the city of Edinburgh

John Harries, Linda Fibiger and and Ola Wojtkiewicz gave a short presentation at the ‘Public Art in the city of Edinburgh – collaborative discussion’ on February 7th, 2018 for professionals and others interested in fostering future improvements to Public Art in the city through funding, legislation, policy and planning. The presentation focused on aspects of collaborative and interdisciplinary work as developed through TRACES.

Bringing to Light: The Dilemmas of Displaying Contentious Historical Material

The CCP4 team participated in the CARMAH/CoHERE conference ‘Critical Heritages and Reflexive Europeanisation’ in Berlin in September of 2017. During the conference, Joan Smith, John Harries and Tal Adler performed ‘Bringing to Light: The Dilemmas of Displaying Contentious Historical Material.’ For more information on the conference and its other participants, please visit their website.

What Remains

John Harries and Linda Fibiger (assisted by Meaghan Dyer) curated a learning event titled “What Remains” at the National Museum of Scotland for Anthropology Scotland Day (June 19th, 2017).  This interactive arts-based learning event, preceded by a short lecture, was developed to educate secondary school students in the relationship between personhood and human remains.


Tal Adler presented the project at the international “Art/Nature”conference held by the Berlin Museum of Natural History on June 26th & 27th, 2017. The conference focused on art projects and artists’ interventions in natural history museums and their expectations, potential, possible boundaries and value from artistic, curatorial and scientific perspectives.

Slow Museology for Difficult Histories

Tal Adler presented the project at Concordia University in Montreal on May 25th, 2017 as part of a roundtable titled “Slow Museology for Difficult Histories – Relationship Advice for Scholars, Artists, Educators, and Curators Looking for Commitment.” The event was public and addressed ethnographers, artists, researchers, as well as staff and students of Concordia University. Tal Adler presented the unique challenges of long-term collaboration with a museum in the context of working on contentious collections.


John Harries chaired the roundtable discussion ‘ART and HUMAN REMAINS’ with discussants Tal Adler, June Jones (University of Birmingham, Institute of Clinical Science) and Sharon Macdonald (Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Centre for Anthropological Research on Museums and Heritage) on April 12th, 2017 at the Edinburgh College of Art. The roundtable discussed the ethics of artistic work with historic collections of human remains.