Wayne Modest


Waayne Modest


Wayne Modest is the head of the Research Center of Material Culture in the Netherlands, and professor of Material Culture and Critical Heritage Studies (by special appointment) in the faculty of humanities at the Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam (VU). He has held visiting scholar positions at the Yale Centre for British Art, Yale University and the School for Museums Studies, New York University. Modest’s work is driven by a concern for more historically contingent ways of understanding the present, especially in relation to material culture/museum collections. His research interests include issues of belonging and displacement; material mobilities; histories of (ethnographic) collecting and exhibitionary practices; difficult/contested heritage (with a special focus on slavery, colonialism and post-colonialism); Caribbean Thought. More recently Modest has been researching and publishing on heritage and citizenship in Europe with special attention for urban life, and on ethnographic museums and questions of redress/repair. He has published Museums and Communities: Curators, Collections, Collaborations (Bloomsbury Academic Publishers, ed. with Viv Golding, 2013) and Museums, Heritage and International Development (Routledge, ed. with Paul Basu, 2013), as well as, ‘We’ve Always Been Modern: Museums, Collections and Modernity.’ Museum Anthropology 35 (1) 2012, among others.