Arbeit am Gedächtnis
Transforming Archives

Akademie der Künste, Pariser Platz

Main programme with exhibition and events, May – November 2021

Exhibition: 4 June – 15 August 2021
Exhibition opening: 3 June 2021

The Akademie der Künste and its Archives are a place of artistic memory work. On the occasion of its 325th anniversary, the Akademie is engaging in a new process of reflecting on its own institution as memory storage. In this context, artistic memory work is realized as an archaeological practice and a political act. It receives new urgency in the current dynamic between digital change, historical revisionism on one side and the beginning process of decolonising the established spaces of knowledge on the other. How and what a society remembers has becomes a key question at a time when self-perceptions are being re-negotiated and mechanisms of inclusion and exclusion are being questioned.

The extensive main programme revolves around a number of event series and a central exhibition: 13 commissioned works by contemporary artists will visualise the grammar of remembering and forgetting and put what has been preserved into new contexts. The power of narration and the presence of that which is absent are among the central themes that will be addressed in installations by Candice Breitz and Eduardo Molinari, film work by Robert Wilson, Cemile Sahin, Susann Hempel and Alexander Kluge, archive-based productions by Arnold Dreyblatt, Thomas Heise and Jennifer Walshe, literary investigations by Ulrike Draesner and Cécile Wajsbrot and sound work by Miroslaw Bałka and Matana Roberts. The exhibition will show the archive not only as resource, but also as artistic method.

The Akademie der Künste is funded by:

Federal Government Comissioner for Culture and the Media