The self-image of the Akademie der Künste is starkly shaped by its conviction that art and politics are related, or more specifically, that art allows us to envision utopias of human coexistence in both the public and private sphere. The exhibition of Elfi Mikesch, Rosa von Praunheim and Werner Schroeter marked the re-opening of its exhibition rooms in 2018. The Academy sees the exhibition as a statement against intolerance and exclusion, in that it recalled the pioneering artists who first explored the issues of gender, body politics and otherness, and demonstrated their enormous influence on German and foreign artists in the years that followed. As early as the 1960s, the protagonists of German literary cinema – Mikesch as a photographer, camerawoman and director, Rosa von Praunheim as a filmmaker, painter, author and activist, and Werner Schroeter as a filmmaker and theatre/opera director – drew attention to emancipatory issues, argued for alternative lifestyles and applied unconventional means of expression, making all three artistic and social mavericks. Mikesch and von Praunheim curated their own works displayed in separate rooms, and pieces by Schroeter, who passed away in 2010, have been presented by his colleague and estate manager Christian Holzfuß. This has been the first exhibition ever to present numerous photos, films, sound installations and documents which highlighted the artists’ aesthetic and biographical relationships. Their mutual roots in the West Berlin art scene and their artistic friendship have been condensed into an overarching theme that connected the exhibition rooms and depicted their joint artistic production spanning five decades to the present. The accompanying programme included film presentations, performances, talk shows and discussions with international participants who described the international impact these three artists have had on the artistic avant-garde and their respective political implications.
Curator: Markus Tiarks
Co-curators: Christian Holzfuß, Claudia Lenssen, Alberte Barsacq (FR)
Project manager: Cornelia Klauß
Event programme/participants: Ingrid Caven (FR), Mostéfa Djadjam (FR), Ulrich Gregor, Torsten Holzapfel, Peter Pankow, Dominik Bender, Isabelle Huppert (FR), Benno Ifland, Heinz-Norbert Jocks, Monika Keppler and others
Venues and Dates:
Gallery Arti et Amicitiae, Amsterdam