Global Studies 2011
The Question of an Art Concept
Wed, October 19, 2011 – Thu, October 20, 2011, Symposium

In 2010, the research program Global Art and the Museum, sponsored by the Fritz Thyssen Stiftung, was the host of the Summer Academy Global Studies – Kunst und visuelle Medien heute / Art and Visual Media Today, whose purpose was a discussion of the consequences of globalization for art production, -distribution, and –reception. In October 2011, we want to expand this platform in the Global Studies Fall Academy, and have again invited young academics and those involved in cultural production from a range of disciplines in German-speaking regions. The guest speakers will hold an interdisciplinary discussion from each of their academic positions – for example in the framework of a master thesis or dissertation – on the topic of contemporary art and visual media.

The focus of Global Studies – The Question of an Art Concept is the critical treatment of a global art concept and the question of the necessity of interdisciplinary approaches in the academic confrontation with this topic. How can a global art concept be handled critically from an interdisciplinary perspective, given that this concept is localized within a field of tension consisting of local and global art production, -reception, and institutional influences? While the various disciplines such as ethnology, art history, philosophy, or aesthetic and cultural studies have historically been concerned with both internal reflection and expanding their methodological borders, an actual exchange of methods that takes account of art worlds today, has been missing. Thus, the academic treatment of global art production appears to require an initial investigation of a necessary and applicable art concept. The conceptualization and implementation of a particular understanding of art is not only an interesting question for the various disciplines such as art history, ethnology, film studies, sociology or education; it also poses a serious challenge for global research into local art production, site-specific curatorial concepts, and the emergence of ‘new’ art markets or concepts of art education in non-Western regions. During two days in October at ZKM, discussion will form around questions such as, how contemporary art worldwide can be localized between concepts of artistic self-assertion, the clichés of the “exotic” and the challenges of the market – and which methodological approaches are offered by the various disciplines for use in analysis and applications.

Participants: Pauline Bachmann, Sebastian Baden, Julia Binter, Cathrine Bublatzky, Markus Hafner, Ulrike Heine, Regina Höfer, Birgit Hopfener, Hannah Jacobi, Franziska Koch, Christoph Poetsch, Chrischona Schmidt, Isabel Seliger, Nadine Siegert, Irina Vogelsang, Stefanie Zobel.

With artist talks and an introduction to the exhibition “The Global Contemporary. Art Worlds After 1989” by Hans Belting

Organization / Institution

Fritz Thyssen Stiftung