Christina Kubisch

Portrait of Christina Kubisch
Year of birth, place
1948, Bremen, Germany
Role at the ZKM
in the collection

Christina Kubisch, born in Bremen in 1948, belongs to the first generation of sound artists. After studying in Germany, Switzerland and Italy, she lived in Milan until 1987. Trained as a flutist and composer, she manifested herself as an artist very early with projects at the intersection of visual art, media and music. In the 1970s, these included above all gender-critical performances and a series of »Video-Concerts« created in collaboration with the Italian artist Fabrizio Plessi. Since the beginning of the 1980s, space-related sound installations with magnetic induction and other self-developed audiovisual means followed. In the mid-1980s, she began to include light as an additional medium in her works. Large-scale installations combining visual and acoustic elements into a new unity came into being.

In 2003, Kubisch began working on her »Electrical Walks« series, in which the public can listen to the electromagnetic fields surrounding them during sound walks in public spaces by using specially developed headphones. These »Electrical Walks« have been realized worldwide. Since then, Kubisch has also created an extensive archive of electromagnetic sounds, which often serve as the basis for her compositions.

Christina Kubisch has had solo exhibitions in museums and galleries in Europe, Asia, Australia, North and South America since 1974. She has participated in numerous international festivals and group exhibitions. These include pro musica nova in Bremen 1976 and 1980, Für Augen und Ohren in Berlin 1980, Biennale di Venezia 1980,1982 and 2021, documenta 8 in Kassel 1987, Ars Electronica in Linz 1987, 2007 and 2020, Biennale of Sydney 1990, Donaueschinger Musiktage 1993, 1997 and 2011, sonambiente in Berlin 1996 and 2006, Sonic Boom in London 2000, sounding spaces in Tokyo 2003, B!AS International Sound Art Exhibition in Taipei 2005, Invisible Geographies in New York 2006, Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival 2007, Sound Art. Sound as a Medium of Art at ZKM | Karlsruhe 2012, Free Sound, The Future Lab in Osaka 2016, Soundtracks at the Museum of Modern Art San Francisco 2017, documenta 14 in Athens 2017, UNArt in Shanghai 2018, Sonic Acts in Amsterdam 2019, Time:Spans in New York 2019, Ultima Contemporary Music Festival in Oslo 2019, Biennale Musica in Venice 2021.

Her sound installations are in permanent collections at museums such as the Museum of Contemporary Arts in San Francisco, MASS MoCA in Massachusetts, and Hamburger Bahnhof in Berlin.

Kubisch has received numerous grants, residencies, and awards. Among others, she is a laureate of the Kulturkreis im BDI 1988, received the Carl Djerassi Honorary Fellowship 2000 in the USA, the Honorary Award of the German Sound Art Prize 2008, the SR Media Art Prize 2009, the Karl-Sczuka-Prize (with Peter Kutin and Florian Kindlinger) 2016, and the Venice Biennale Musica Prize for best premiere 2021.

Since 1975, she has published on labels such as: Auf dem Nil, Cramps Records, Edition RZ, ampersand, semishigure, Die Schachtel, Important Records, Gruenrekorder, Tochnit Aleph, Fragment Factory and Astres d'Or.

Christina Kubisch has held guest professorships in Paris, Oxford, and Berlin. She taught as Professor of Sculpture / Audiovisual Art at the Hochschule der Bildenden Künste Saar in Saarbrücken from 1994 to 2013 and founded the Sound Art Department there. Since 1997 she has been a member of the Music Section of the Academy of Arts, Berlin.

Christina Kubisch lives and works in Berlin.