Sustainability in Contemporary Music


Today, we not only know that we are facing civilisational collapse but also know many ways to stem the tide of the consequences of our actions. However, while the impending breaking point permeates ever more clearly into our consciousness with mounting facts and figures, the gap between knowledge and action is widening.

On 7 and 8 October, the Akademie der Künste, Impuls neue Musik and inm / field notes invite you to an Open Space on the topic of sustainability in contemporary music, where knowledge will be exchanged and translated into action. Artists, curators and activists from the fields of contemporary music and sustainability research will come together to rethink our relationships to each other and to our environment and to develop new visions for the future as well as possibilities for action with the means of contemporary music.

At the centre are questions of how music can play a key role in the transmission of knowledge and initiate transformation of society towards a sustainable, environmentally conscious and socially responsible global community. How does sustainability influence not only the contextual parameters but also the content, structure and form – the aesthetics – of composing and musicking? And to what extent does the sector itself, – including its precarious and casualising ways of working and producing – need to be reviewed in terms of the principles of sustainability at the individual, organisational and systemic levels? The connections and as well as the situational and structural disparities between the matters of sustainability in the Global South and the Global North will also be addressed.

The open-space format allows participants to build their own agenda. Aesthetic questions and concrete approaches to solutions may be discussed in groups, and artistic strategies may be presented. Various (artistic and scientific) contributions in the form of lecture performances, expert inputs, listening sessions and a sound walk will also provide new inspiration and perspectives. At the end of the two days, the meeting will culminate in a jointly developed, collective sound action.

The Open Space has been preceded by a three-part workshop with a group of artists, curators, institutions, networks, etc. from the fields of contemporary music and sustainability research to determine the thematic fields and formats in a collected process. We thank Joanna Bailie, Julie Beauvais, Valentina Bressan, Marina Cyrino, Teresa Díaz de Cossio (neofonia), Tena Dobranic (Music Biennale Zagreb), Gina Emerson (IASS / BGNM), Christina Ertl-Shirley, Hanna Grzeskiewicz (BGNM), Bernhard König, Bettina Korintenberg (ifa galleries), Irene Kletschke (UdK / Klangzeitort), Catherine Lefebvre (Art Music Denmark), Hermann Lugan (Bureau du théatre et de la Danse, Institut Francais Deutschland), Liza Lim, Guely Morató, Karen Power, Katharina Rosenberger (sonic matter), Albert Saprykin (Kyiv Contemporary Music Days), Reimar Volker (Goethe-Institut), Ralf Weiß (2N2K Network).

The Open Space is initiated / co-financed by Akademie der Künste, Berlin, Impuls neue Musik and inm / field notes.

7 — 8 Oct 2022

10 am – 8 pm

Initiated by Akademie der Künste, Impuls neue Musik & inm / field notes

In English and German

Free admission

Registration here

Further information

Programme (PDF)