Too Broke for Art: Kostenfreie Empfehlungen für Juni

Too Broke for Art geht in die zweite Runde!

Die folgende Liste enthält ausschließlich kostenfreie Veranstaltungen (einige jedoch nur für Studierende) und soll zum zwanglosen Besuch motivieren. Alle Angaben wurden nach gutem Gewissen überprüft, Änderungen des Verstantalters sind jedoch möglich.

  • 05.06.2019, Eröffnung: Bani Abidi “They Died Laughing”

    Wann: 19:00 Uhr – 22:00 Uhr
    Wo: Gropius Bau
    Was: Vernissage zur neuen Ausstellung. Eintritt kostenfrei. Mehr dazu: hier.

  • 06.06.2019, Eröffnung:  SUMO / Three Boys from Pasadena

    Wann: 19:00 Uhr – 23:00 Uhr
    Wo: Helmut Newton Foundation, Museum für Fotografie
    Was: Vernissage zur neuen Ausstellung. Eintritt kostenfrei. Mehr dazu: hier.

  • 06.06.2019, Eröffnung: Schering Stiftung Art Award 2018: Anna Daučíková

    Wann: 19:00 Uhr – 22:00 Uhr
    Wo: KW Institute of Contemporary Art
    Was: Vernissage zur neuen Ausstellung. Eintritt kostenfrei . Mehr dazu: hier.

  • 07.06.2019, Eröffnung: Food for the Eyes & Elfie Semotan

    Wann: 19:00 Uhr – 23:59 Uhr
    Wo: C/O Berlin
    Was: Vernissage zur neuen Ausstellung. Eintritt kostenfrei. Mehr dazu: hier.

  • 21.06.2019, Eröffnung: Image Bank

    Wann: 19:00 Uhr – 22:00 Uhr
    Wo: KW Institute of Contemporary Art
    Was: Vernissage zur neuen Ausstellung. Eintritt kostenfrei . Mehr dazu: hier.

Diese Liste wird im Laufe des Monats noch ggf. angepasst und ergänzt. Empfehlungen und Tipps gerne in die Kommentare.

Too Broke For Art: Kostenfreie Empfehlungen für Mai

Sehr lange wurde auf dieser Seite nichts mehr hinzugefügt und ich dachte mir, ein einfacher Beitrag sollte das lange Schweigen brechen.

Studenten sind arm und Kunst ist teuer. So oder so ähnlich beschreiben meine Freunde ihr Verhältnis zur Kunstinstitution. Anders als in London sind die staatlichen Museen in Deutschland leider nicht kostenfrei. Neben dem finanziellen Aspekt kommt auch eine Hemmung vor dem selbstständigen Museumsbesuch hinzu. “Ich weiß so wenig darüber.” Die Angst in der Ausstellung überfordert zu sein und nichts mitnehmen zu können, hindert einige meiner Freunde daran die Museen zu betreten. Als angehende Kunstlehrerin ein eher semi-geiles Fazit.

Die folgende Liste enthält ausschließlich kostenfreie Veranstaltungen (einige jedoch nur für Studierende) und soll zum zwanglosen Besuch motivieren. Highlight ist in diesem Monat der Internationale Museumstag am 19. Mai mit zahlreichen Aktivitäten begleitend zum Besuch.

  • 02.05.2019, Talk: Andreas Mühe & Norbert Bisky

    Wann: 18:30 Uhr – 19:30 Uhr
    Wo: Hamburger Bahnhof
    Was: Gespräch mit Andreas Mühe und Norbert Bisky anlässlich der neuen Ausstellung “Mischpoche”. Mehr dazu: hier.

  • 10.05.2019, Eröffnung: Raum und Identität

    Wann: 19:00 Uhr – 23:00 Uhr
    Wo: Aff Galerie
    Was: Vernissage zur neuen Ausstellung. Eintritt kostenfrei. Mehr dazu: hier.

  • 16.05.2019, Eröffnung: Gustave Caillebotte

    Wann: 19:00 Uhr – 21:00 Uhr
    Wo: Alte Nationalgalerie
    Was: Vernissage zur neuen Ausstellung. Eintritt kostenfrei. Mehr dazu: hier.

  • 18.05.2019, Students’ Day – bauhaus imaginista

    Wann: 13:00 Uhr – 18:00 Uhr
    Wo: Haus der Kulturen der Welt
    Was: Interaktives Game
    In Zusammenarbeit mit Studierenden des M.A. Angewandte Kulturwissenschaften und Kultursemiotik der Uni Potsdam.
    Veranstaltung ist kostenfrei für Studierende. Mehr dazu: hier.

  • *19.05.2019, Internationaler Museumstag*

    Wann: ganztägig
    Wo: u.A. Bröhan Museum, Deutsch historisches Museum, Deutsches Technikmuseum, Museum für Naturkunde Berlin, u.v.m.
    Was: Führungen, Workshops, etc.
    Der Internationale Museumstag wird jährlich vom Internationalen Museumsrat ICOM ausgerufen und findet im Jahr 2019 bereits zum 42. Mal statt. Ziel des Aktionstages ist es, auf die thematische Vielfalt der mehr als 6.500 Museen in Deutschland sowie der Museen weltweit aufmerksam zu machen. Mehr dazu: hier.

  • 25.05.2019, TISCHGESPRÄCH #18: About the Museums

    Wann: 15:00 Uhr – 17:30 Uhr
    Wo: Altes Museum
    Was: Workshop
    Werdet Amateure! Wie Museen durch partizipative Projekte lernen können.
    Veranstaltung ist kostenfrei für Studierende. Mehr dazu: hier.

Diese Liste wird im Laufe des Monats noch ggf. angepasst und ergänzt. Empfehlungen und Tipps gerne in die Kommentare.

Uh no, being an artist does not mean you can behave like shit.

Breaking news, I know.

After a recent incident, I felt like writing this text. Continuing with the theme of demystifying the art realm I would like to phrase this very clearly:

Artists are no gods and should be held accountable for their shit.

To start this serious topic in a fun way let’s have a look at this ranking from the Ranker with the accurate headline: Artist Who Were Bad People.

It might be rooted in the fact that I study at an art school and work with artists myself that I do not see them as sacred creatures who deserve to be worshipped. Of course, I admire art and I am very able to separate my appreciation of the actual art piece and my opinion on the artist. It is not one and the same thing. An online article that is describing very well this difference between piece and person written by Charles MacGrath and published in the New York Times carrying the suiting headliner: Good Art, Bad People.

That being said, artists are able to do bad things and as MacGrath asks in his article: “Why should artists be any better than the rest of us?”

The fact that people create art should not excuse their (crap) behaviour. Neither should admirers of art that nor should artists themselves think that. However, during my time at the art university, I sadly do experience the opposite.

For many people involved in the art scene the end does indeed justify the means. “But I am an artist” is a phrase I have heard a lot. Sometimes it is used as an explanation for whatever fuckery just happened and sometimes it is some kind of legitimation for some fuckery that is supposed to come. I mean… wtf.
The idea of writing this text occurred to me when I witnessed an artist yelling at a lady at the museums. The latter refused to acknowledge the artist’s press card because it was not following the guidelines. In reply to that, the artist started shouting that “she is an established artist performing at the Berlin Biennale and that she always gets into museums for free”. The people who overheard the fact that she is an artist were looking at her awestruck as if it excused anything. At that moment I did not really care if that statement was true or not. (It is true though) She could have been Andrea Fraser herself and it would still be not okay to show up somewhere and behave as aggressive as she does now.

Since I am not an established artist myself I like to compare them to the mentors at my school. Would Hito Steyerl behave that way? Would Olafur Eliasson? What would have been their reaction when they would have been there? Is it even relevant to be an artist yourself in order to criticise one?

“I am a well-established artist performing at the Venice Biennale and I pay for my ticket because that’s what people do.” ?

Artists might do think and work differently but so do mechanical engineers and doctors. Do we grant them extra treatments? Correct me if I am wrong but I don’t think that’s a thing.

To come back to the linked articles: After the incident, I researched on that artist and she did indeed perform at the Berlin Biennale on several occasions and her work is indeed fascinating. Would I see her show? Probably. Does this make her behaviour any less terrible? No, it won’t.

 

I take selfies in museums. Sue me.

After additional reflection on the entire question of “how to appreciate art the right way” I came to the conclusion that there is nothing wrong with selfies taken within the exhibition space.

I get it. I understand that it must seem odd how some museum visitors see the act of taking pictures of the art as more important than looking at the actual art piece. As mentioned in this former post I disagree on saying there is only one true way to experience art. Today I want to discuss the potential benefits of pictures taken within an art show.

First of all I want to state that I hate the idea of art as something sacred and holy that you are not allowed to handle with normal manner. There is no choir singing in the background while I look at art and I do not have to wait until a rush of emotions is running through my mortal body because I just have been struck with a divine god given enlightenment. Calm down crazy.

Along with the critique of the – as often called – unworthy or wrong visitor comes also the critique on technology as well. Cell phones and social media are supposed to be the reason why people spent less time looking at art. An article on artsy by Isaac Kaplan from 2017 discusses the question if cell phones had an impact on how long people look at art.

These results suggest that cell phones haven’t changed the amount of time people spend in front of art that drastically. The big difference the study found was the birth of selfies—or “arties,” selfies taken with artworks, […] Two people were taking so many “arties” that they had to be excluded from the study, because they weren’t even looking at the art.

So does the act of taking selfies decrease the overall art experience? Not necessarily. If you are not like the two people who didn’t look at the piece at all, it is fine. Kaplan mentions in his article two studies by Lisa F. Smith and Jeffrey K. Smith who came to a similar conclusion: The average time spent in front of artwork was less than one minute. If you don’t live in New York and have the rare opportunity to visit the MoMA you obviously want to see as many pieces as possible instead of sitting awestruck in front of a few. Also, your body has its limit and spending 6h in a museum is tough.

That said I want to come back to selfies/arties. The fact that somebody did take a selfie in the exhibition space does not tell you how much time that person spent looking at the art. Also spending less time in front of art does not mean less appreciation either. There is no evidence to that –  apart from your personal judgemental position. As long as there is no photo prohibition there is nothing wrong with taking selfies.

I also dare to say that selfies or even #ootd in museums are a good thing. In a time where social media and influencers are big players in marketing, you have to admit that any uploaded picture is free advertisement for the artist/museum/gallery/show. It is no breaking news that many well-established institutions do struggle financially despite their high-quality art collection and I think whoever cares for museums should be thankful that these houses can pay their guards.

Promoting art institutions as an influencer is an idea that I like a lot. Art is for me, not some God-given miracle and as long as nobody violates any rules or laws I don’t see it too problematic. The expectation that you should be able to talk about art in some phoney way or need a certain level of intellect to enjoy a museum the right way is a.) pretentious and b.) excluding a lot of people. And this is a problem because art is no privilege for the elite.

Dealing respectfully with a piece of work does not mean that you are unable to use it for your own purposes – meaning I will take pictures of it as an addition for my own body of work or use it to make a point. It is needless to say that art experience in our time is not solely visual anymore. Just to name a few: Erwin Wurm, Tino Sehgal, Andrea Fraser, Pierre Huyghe and also Signe Pierce are all artists who work with pieces that demand more from the visitor. Taking selfies or pictures in general by yourself is a way experience art as well and maybe even better than solemnly stare at a piece forever.

Say Cheeeeese!

The right approach on art

A Comment

During my stay in Finland, I managed to visit the HAM (Helsinki Art Museum) and see Yayoi Kusama’s solo show at some point. The exhibition was recommended by a friend and I have seen many pictures of the show on social media already. I knew very little of Kusama at that point since I have only seen documentation of her early performances during a photography exhibition at the TATE. Even now I would not consider myself as an expert on her body of work either.

The main reason why I am writing this comment is an online article published on Dazed Digital (original article here) that I came across with this morning. During a show in LA a visitor broke one of Kusama’s squash sculptures while trying to take the perfect picture in her infinity room – which led to a ban for photography in general proposed by the artist herself.

While I do agree that damaging an art piece is highly disrespectful and also very stupid if you did it for the sake of a private picture, I got very surprised by the comments to the Facebook post of Dazed and Confused Magazine (here). I should have been aware that reading user comments on Facebook is upsetting in the first place but here we are.

Many users made nasty and patronizing comments about how people like that specific visitor are not approaching art the right way. One person stated:

“ART IS MEANT TO BE EXPERIENCED NOT A FUCKING BACKDROP TO YOUR INSECURITIES!”

I know that I am overthinking things right now since I doubt that any of the users ever cared for Art education or communication of Art (Kunstvermittlung). After spending my weekend at Hamburger Bahnhof and discussing ways to approach art with children I perplex on how conservative admires of contemporary art can be.

What is wrong with taking a selfie?

So, first of all, I want to make clear that I think the act of mindlessly taking pictures is annoying as well. Rather than looking with your own eyes, people choose to quickly take a picture instead. Got it. Agree. However, should we not be thankful that the people made it into the museum in the first place? Who gives you the right to tell others how to look at or experience art?

The idea that art is solely for the self-proclaimed intellectuals and excluding people who do not fulfil their standards is making me sick. Does this mean I am not supposed to see the show because among different aspects I enjoyed the aesthetics of Kusama’s work the most?

While my own personal approach on art might be more similar to one of the intellectuals I do have many friends who are not familiar with or used to the museum space. For them taking a selfie in front of a famous painting is their way to enjoy the visit and I am glad they have fun.

The idea that there are a right and a wrong way to approach art is based on the fact that each and every person perceives the surrounding in the same way, which is bullshit on so many levels. Every visitor is an individual and has their own way of dealing with the exhibition. Children will probably deal with these yellow glowing squashes differently and enjoy other aspects than an art student. Neither of their approaches is better or worse.

“those people are useless!
they don’t fucking know that her artworks are the result of a real anguish pain she used to experience since she was young..

just stop the use of phones inside”

If standing in the infinity room taking a selfie makes me aware of the beauty and atmosphere of this installation, why should I not take my phone inside? If being a cool backdrop is all I can take from that artwork, what is so bad about it? At least I did make it to the exhibition and I did support the museum and artist. What exactly is making your approach better than mine?

As an art student myself I can say that most of the people will not understand your art piece the way you see it anyway. Knowing the biography of the artist and the circumstances of a piece will help you appreciate it but I doubt that your interpretation is exactly what the artist meant. Therefore it is not more valid or justified than any other interpretation.

“Makes you wonder, what people actually go to exhibitions for… The selfie/image, or for the exhibitions itself.”

“Neither. It’s all for attention. Even being at that location is for attention. There is no interest in anything else but vanity.”

Patronizing comments of the self-proclaimed intellectuals are a sign of the problematic class-thinking, believing that some people are worth more than others. It is very ironic that admirers of Kusama, an artist who embraced diversity and had troubles with conservative values herself, cling to such an outdated concept. But then again, we live in a time where street art is placed in museums and former criticizers of capitalism such as Yayoi Kusama herself are now working with the fashion industry.