20 June 2019

The Käthe Kollwitz Prize 2020 from the Akademie der Künste goes to Timm Ulrichs
Award ceremony and opening on 23 January 2020
Exhibition from 24 January to 1 March, Hanseatenweg

Timm Ulrichs is to receive the Käthe Kollwitz Prize 2020, endowed with 12,000 euros. In the year of his 80th birthday, the artist born in Berlin is to be honoured for his life's work, which has proven to be a treasure trove and source of inspiration for subsequent generations of artists. The award ceremony and opening of the exhibition will take place on 23 January at the Akademie building on Hanseatenweg.

The jury, consisting of Akademie members Ute Eskildsen, Wulf Herzogenrath and Gregor Schneider, stresses in particular that "Timm Ulrichs, far from the centres of art, has worked tirelessly as an autodidact to create his encyclopaedia of ideas. As a self-proclaimed 'Total Artist', he works in a variety of genres. In doing so, he does not pursue any overall concept with his wealth of ideas but rather searches for originality in each individual idea. The sheer volume and diversity of these different ideas is unparalleled." The jury is delighted that, by awarding the Käthe Kollwitz Prize 2020 to Timm Ulrichs, his wealth of ideas will be shown long overdue appreciation. Ulrich is an artist, former university teacher and critical observer of the scene, who has lived a non-conformist existence outside of the mainstream and the art market. His political action serves as an example to a younger generation.

Timm Ulrichs (*31 March 1940 in Berlin) After graduating from high school, he studied architecture at the Technical University in Hanover. After that, he taught as a (visiting) professor, among others, at the Academy of Art in Münster and the State Academy of Fine Arts in Braunschweig. In 1959, Ulrichs founded the "Werbezentrale für Totalkunst, Banalismus und Extemporismus” (Advertising Agency for Total Art, Banalism and Extemporaneity) in Hanover, which was to serve the dissemination, development and production of Total Art, and in 1961 declared himself to be the "first living work of art". This was followed by a public "self-exhibition" in Frankfurt/Main in 1966, the establishment of an "art practice (office hours by appointment)" in 1969 and the first Total Art retrospective in Krefeld in 1970. In 1977, he participated in Documenta 6 in Kassel with his radical position. His oeuvre includes conceptual work, object art, environments, performances, actions, multimedia and concrete poetry.

The Käthe Kollwitz Prize has been awarded to a visual artist every year since 1960. Prize winners over the last few years include Hito Steyerl (2019), Adrian Piper (2018), Katharina Sieverding (2017), Edmund Kuppel (2016) and Bernard Frize (2015). On the occasion of the 60th anniversary of the Käthe Kollwitz Prize, the Akademie der Künste is to publish an overview of all of the prize winners since 1960 including additional material at www.adk.de in March 2020.

The prize, the exhibition and the catalogue have been co-financed by Kreissparkasse Cologne, sponsor of the Käthe Kollwitz Museum Cologne, since 1992.

Press contact:
Sabine Kolb, T +49 (0)30 200 57–15 13, kolb@adk.de