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A06 Artistic Life Practice as Intervention

The research project examines "softer” avant-garde practices from the first half of the 20th century that don’t follow tabula-rasa rhetorics but combine the demand for therapeutic-educational intervention in moments of social crisis with the use of traditional artistic methods. These practices manifest new forms of life, work, and relationships in which artistic, political, and epistemological programmes are mutually dependent. Beate Söntgen looks at Roger Fry's reformist transformation of Victorian ways of living, housing, and relating in his activities with the Bloomsbury Group (SP 1). Mimmi Woisnitza focusses on Latvian theatre maker Asja Lacis, analyzing her work with amateurs and her nomadic life as a blueprint for alternative forms of community beyond socialist-communist party ideology (SP 2). Anna Kipke examines the life and work of Emma Kunz, who connected alternative healing methods with practices of artistic abstraction in a Swiss village community (SP 3). The aim is to counter the avantgarde narrative of heroic rupture and constitute the therapeutic as a form of artistic intervention; that is, as an interruptive practice oriented towards redivision and rearrangements. Rather than merely making demands, the creative-practical execution of such practices actually sketch out, examine, and implement social transformation.

Head of Project

Prof. Dr. Beate Söntgen (SP 1)

Postdoctoral Researcher

Dr. Mimmi Woisnitza (SP 2)

Doctoral Researcher

Anna Kipke (SP 3)

Student Assistant

Madeleine Häusler

Adriana Raczykowski (until September 30, 2023)