Knowledge gathering – Gathering knowledge
© Gila Kolb

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Knowledge gathering – Gathering knowledge

A Cooperation at Documenta 14 between School of Arts and Design Kassel, Bern University of the Arts, and Aalto University Helsinki.

With its working subtitle „Learning from Athens“ documenta 14 takes its starting point on unsafe grounds: it invites for a dislocation and a process of unlearning. Unlike documenta 12 which focused on questions of content or documenta 13 that explored specific discourses and dominant narratives, Documenta 14 concentrates on multiple voices in knowledge and knowledge forms. This presents the public and art educators with a tremendously vast range of topics, relationships, discourses and narratives set up in a manner that dissolves boundaries rather than contains and structures them in the exhibitions in Kassel and Athens, the two cities where Documenta 14 takes place. There is even talk of blurring the boundaries between exhibition and non-exhibition.

Encounters in a Third Space:
During the final week of Documenta 14, a one-week long knowledge gathering* is planned that aims to create encounters and exchange and to work on concepts collaboratively. For one week, students of the Art University Kassel, the Bern University of the Arts, and Aalto University Helsinki will meet and collaborate in the student-run project space KMMN at the Kulturbahnhof in Kassel. During this time we will closely examine questions, such as:

Which topics, relationships, discourses and narratives resonate within the group? What does unlearning mean? And how can we understand curating under such post-representational conditions? What is a curatorial gesture? How can a big exhibition project take a stance? Where is documenta 14 situating itself between local social and political struggles and disagreeing universalities? And where does it stand in relation to the conflicts within which it is happening? How does the educational program at Documenta 14 work? How can a finding be formulated while still keeping with the multiplicity of voices? What is important to us? How can a lack of knowledge (or an overwhelming presence of different knowledges) be dealt with in a productive manner? Given the fact that there is not anymore only one existing canon, can art educators simply tell any story they like? What can serve as a point of orientation and how can the tools with which we approach this be calibrated? In what ways are this maximum production of knowledge and lack of knowledge documented? What impact will this have on future exhibition projects and debates in art education?

Discussions and talks with invited (temporarily) local actors, an exhibition, and an evening program are the formats for the exchanges that will take place in various forms and on various different levels. This collaboration will produce and present compilations and congregations of experiences (knowledge gathering) and collectively devised questions and possible approaches or responses (gathering knowledge).

*The term Knowledge Gathering is a quotation by the aneducation program of documenta 14."Aneducation develops an artist-led, process-based approach through research, personal exchange, listening, conversing, walking, reading, and looking—gathering knowledge but also dispersing it like a breathing organism.“

11th to 15th of September 2017 in the last week of documenta 14, 10.00 to 20.00
Space: KMMN, KulturBahnhof Kassel, Franz-Ulrich-Straße 16, 34117 Kassel

Directed in collaboration by Gila Kolb, Research Lecturer at the Bern University of the Arts and member of the „faculty“ of documenta 14 aneducation, Prof. Dr. Nora Sternfeld, Professor for Curating and Mediating Art at the Aalto University in Helsinki and designated documenta-Professor at the School of Arts and Design Kassel.


Tuesday, Sept, 12, 19.00-20.00
Clare Butcher, aneducation Coordinator for documenta 14 Can Knowledge be Nourishing? - Digesting aneducational processes in documenta 14 and outside of it

Thursday, 14th of September 2017, 18.00-20.00
"Where do we stand now? And what comes after the show? Lessons of documenta 14 Nora Sternfeld, Ayşe Güleç & Xenia Kalpaktsoglou"

KMMN Space
Interim in der Nachrichtenmeisterei am KulturBahnhof Kassel Franz-Ulrich-Straße 16, 34117 Kassel

Speakers and Organisers:

Gila Kolb
is an art educator and research lecturer at Bern University of Arts and University of Teacher Education Bern. Co-founder of Interview-Blog The Art Educator’s Talk (2016), Agency art education (2015), MethodeMandy (2012), Member of the Faculty at documenta14 Art Education „aneducation” since 2016. Before: Assistant researcher at the University of Cologne (2016-2017), Germany. Assistant researcher at the University of Bremen(2013-2015), interim professor at the Art department at the University of Education, Heidelberg (2011-2012), research assistant at the Kassel School of Art and Design (2007-2011), holder of the doctoral certificate program “Design and recognition – building competence in the artistic subjects and departments at school” (2011-2013) and freelance educator at Museum Fridericianum (2009-2011). Teaching assignments at HfG Karlsruhe, Aalto University Finland, University of Cologne, University Paderborn.

Research focus: Strategies of contemporary Art Education (at schools & museums), the teaching of drawing in Art Education. Recently published: What’s Next? Art Education (2015, w/ Torsten Meyer), Shift (2012, w/ Christine Heil & Torsten Meyer).

Nora Sternfeld
is professor for Curating and Mediating Art at the School of Art and Design at Aalto University in Helsinki, designated documenta-Professor at the School of Arts and Design Kasseland and co-director of the Exhibition Theory and Practice Master's program /ecm at the University of Applied Arts in Vienna. She is co-founder of trafo K, an office for art education and critical knowledge production in Vienna, and a member of the freethought collective (Irit Rogoff, Stefano Harney, Adrian Heathfield, Mao Mollona, Louis Moreno), which focuses on research, education and cultural production. Within the latter, Nora Sternfeld was one of the artistic directors of the 2016 Bergen Assembly.

Clare Butcher
is an art educator from Zimbabwe, who cooks as part of her practice. She is currently aneducation Coordinator for documenta 14. She has taught at the Gerrit Rietveld Academie, the Piet Zwart Institute’s Master of Education in Art, and the University of Cape Town. Her own education includes an MFA from the School of Missing Studies, an MA in Curating the Archive from the University of Cape Town, and partici­pation in the De Appel Curatorial Program. Some collaborative and individual endeavors include Men Are Easier to Manage Than Rivers (2015); The Principles of Packing... on two travelling exhibitions (2012) and If A Tree... on the Second Johannesburg Biennale (2012).

Ayse Güleç
studied social education/social work at the University of Kassel and has been working at the Kulturzentrum Schlachthof e.V. cultural centre since 1998. The focus of her work is migrants and (inter-) cultural communication. She is involved in the development of self-organised initiatives in the areas of gender, migration and anti-racism. Güleç devel- oped the documenta 12 advisory board and consequently became its spokeswoman. She became a member of the Maybe Education Group at dOCUMENTA (13). She is currently responsible for community liaison in the office of the artistic director of documenta 14 in Kassel. Publications include: “Fordern, überfordern, verweigern. Bild- und Raumpolitik(en) in der Migra- tionsgesellschaft,” in Zülfukar Çetin, Savaş Taş,ed.: Gespräche über Rassismus. Perspektiven & Wider- stände, March 2015, pp. 189–216; Kunstvermittlung – Arbeit mit dem Publikum, Öffnung der Institutionen. Formate und Methoden der Kunstvermittlung auf der documenta 12, diaphanes, Berlin, 2009.

Xenia Kalpaktsoglou
is a curator and writer. In 2005, together with Poka-Yio (Polydoros Karyofyllis) and Augustine Zenakos, she founded the Athens Biennale, a non-profit independent orga- nisation, which she co-directed until July 2016 when she stepped down. During this time, she co-curated 2 editions, AB1- Destroy Athens, 2007 and AB3-MON- ODROME, 2011. Her curatorial practice has evolved to focus on two primary functions: that of an initiator of artistic platforms and networks, and that of a facilitator of artists’ projects while her process is heavily rooted in collabora- tions. Currently she is involved in the set- up of LUC (Laboratory for the Urban Commons), an Athens-based research laboratory constituted by local and international researchers, activists, and cultural producers which aims to operate as platform across different solidarity economies, grassroots movements, knowledge and cultural communities.

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