During the past one and a half decade, a curatorial orientation towards "screen practice" has expanded the moving image and digital art into the public domain, exploring alternative artistic uses of the screen. The emergence of urban LED screens in the late 1990s provided a new venue that allowed for digital art to expand into public space. It also offered a political point of departure, inviting for confrontation with the Spectacle and with the politics and ideology of the screen as a mass communication medium that instrumentalized spectator positions.
In this article I propose that screen practice in curating has emerged from a critical discourse in response to a particular "screen topos", which has relied on a Foucauldian, apparatus-theoretical mechanism of the screen as a broadcasting medium of mass entertainment. This topos, I argue, has transferred the dispositif of the screen apparatus to the dispositif of screen practice in curating, resulting in a medium-based curatorial discourse. With reference to the nomadic exhibition project Nordic Outbreak that I co-curated with Nina Colosi in 2013 and 2014, I suggest that the topos of the defined visual display area, frequently still known as "the screen", should be liberated from its medium-based conceptual and political heritage. This would potentially bring curatorial discourse into new realms of relevance in renewed responses to our current urban postmedia complex.