Applications due March 1, 2018. For more information, click on the title above
Culture in the Cold War seeks to break new ground in our understanding of socialist modernity—recently the focus of much scholarship on material culture and the built environment—by exploring new research to provide a sustained, interdisciplinary examination into the role of cultural policy and the individual in the visual arts, music, and film in the GDR. Drawing on the latest research in art history, musicology, film studies, and German studies, it will re-evaluate debates about artistic freedom and censorship; consider relations between high and low (popular), as well as official and alternative arts cultures; and establish the importance and timeliness of revisiting this period of recent history in today’s college classrooms.
Scholarship on the arts under socialism began undergoing an important shift about ten years ago, as it attempted to overcome an exclusive focus on the impact of repressive social structures; this was closely tied to a flattening and devaluation of socialist cultural achievements. Newer scholarship seeks to re-appropriate the field by bringing contemporary interests and research questions to bear upon it and is now yielding more nuanced and in-depth insights, which highlight commonalities, as well as differences between socialist and capitalist modernity. The Institute gathers and builds upon this new scholarship, incorporating work on the visual arts, music, and film and focusing on the GDR. Given that the different disciplines we engage exhibit significant interpretive differences and that the experience of GDR artists working in different media was also quite varied, the Institute expects to challenge conventional assumptions about periodization as well as socialist ideology and cultural policies.
Speakers will include Sean Allan, Sky Arndt-Briggs, Barton Bygg, Joy Calico, April Eisman, Johanna Junker, & Elaine Kelly
Exhibition SIBYLLE. Fotografien eines Modemagazins (SIBYLLE: Photography of a Fashion Magazine) December 3, 2017 - Februrary 11, 2018 Kunstmuseum Diesel Kraftwerk Cottbus
The magazine SIBYLLE, which appeared six times a year beginning in 1956 with a print run of 200,000, was well-loved in East Germany and therefore regularly sold out. Thought of as the East's Vogue and dedicated primarily to fashion, it was subtitled, "Magazine for Fashion and Culture" because those who made it, above all photographer and designers, considered photography, design, fashion and culture of equal value. Photography was a particularly important aspect of the magazine. The photographers for SIBYLLE had mastered not only their field, they set the standard.
SIBYLLE: Photography of a Fashion Magazine is the first exhibition to focus explicitly on the photographers of SIBYLLE, showing the work of thirteen of its most important photographers: Sibylle Bergemann, Arno Fischer, Ute Mahler, Werner Mahler, Sven Marquart, Elisabeth Meinke, Roger Melis, Hans Praefke, Günter Rössler, Rudolf Schäfer, Wolfgang Wandelt, Michael Weidt, Ulrich Wüst
In cooperation with the Kunsthalle Rostock / Curated by the Kunsthalle Rostock.
Exhibition Christa Böhme und Lothar Böhme, Malerei (Christa Böhme and Lothar Böhme, Painting) September 16 - November 19, 2017 Kunstmuseum Diesel Kraftwerk Cottbus
For the first time in thirty years, the work of Christa Böhme (1940-1991) and Lothar Böhme (* 1938) are being shown together in an exhibition. Their work belongs to the so-called "Berlin School." In a conscious retreat into "private" motifs like still lifes, figures, interieurs, and even (city) landscapes, the artists sought to develop their work, especially in relationship to Cezanne.
This exhibition shows the work of five Neoexpressionist artists who left East Germany in the mid 1980s: Ralf Kerbach (b. 1956), Helge Leiberg (b. 1954), Hans Scheib (b. 1949), Cornelia Schleime (b. 1953), and Reinhard Stangl (b. 1950).
Beginning at the end of the 1970s, an artistic alternative scene emerged in East and West Germany with loud protests and targeted provocations. Infected by the British Punk movement, youths organized themselves in Do-It-Yourself ways and often worked on the other side of popular art, cultural norms, and societal expectations. This exhibition looks at major punk bands and a handful of artists inspired by them in East and West Germany in the 1980s.
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