Stuttgart/Berlin, 3 May 2021 - In the following months, ifa will celebrate the three coinciding anniversaries “50 years ifa Gallery Stuttgart”, “30 years ifa Gallery Berlin”, and “50 Years Coordination of the German Pavilion at the Venice Biennale” with several events and exhibitions taking place in Stuttgart and Berlin, accompanied by digital formats. The programme will focus on the artists Lothar Baumgarten (German Pavilion 1984) and Joseph Beuys (German Pavilion 1976) as well as on the topic of biennials. In addition to the activities of ifa around the various international biennials, a new series of events with prominent guests from science, art and culture will start on 6 May.
For 50 years in Stuttgart and 30 years in Berlin the ifa galleries have been exhibiting international contemporary artists, presenting works from the ifa art collection and continuing the dialogue with biennale artists and curators. They understand themselves as platforms for a lively, creative and open exchange and promote the encounter of diverse perspectives.
ifa shows contemporary art from Germany worldwide. After years of travelling through international museums, the exhibitions are transferred to ifa's art collection, which comprises 23 0000 works of art.
Since 2020, the ifa galleries in Berlin and Stuttgart have been developing a curatorial program that brings individual artistic positions from the art collection into dialogue with international contemporary artists and looks at them anew.
The fascination of the contributions to national pavilions at the Venice Biennale lies in the event´s invitation to reflect on global art and cultural discourse and its social contexts. For 50 years ifa has been accompanying curators and artists in the transformation of the German Pavilion – 23 editions that sparked important artistic and social debates.
Anniversary events and exhibitions to come
Thursday, 6 May 2021, 19.00
Biennalen-Talk #1 (Digital via Zoom):
The Biennale Principle–Boom of an Exhibition Format
With Franciska Zólyom and Jörg Scheller
Organised by ifa-Galerie Stuttgart
Whether in Ulaanbaatar, Ouagadougou or São Tomé and Príncipe – the biennial format is booming. The oldest Biennale has been held in Venice since 1895 and its popularity remains high. But how effective is this form of exhibition today? This will be discussed by Franciska Zólyom, curator of the German contribution to the Venice Art Biennale 2019 and director of the Galerie für zeitgenössische Kunst in Leipzig, and Jörg Scheller, art historian and professor at the Zurich University of the Arts.
The ifa activates and bundles the scientific examination of the topic of biennials and is involved in global networks with biennial actors. It promotes research on biennial topics and contributes to the scholarly reappraisal of the subject through reference publications.
The event kicks off ifa's new series "Biennial Talks" with changing guests and topics.
Until autumn 2021
“Lothar Baumgarten and Gabriel Rossell Santillán – A Natural Order of Things”
ifa-Gallery Stuttgart, Charlottenplatz 17, 70173 Stuttgart
Please find out about the opening hours, access and Corona updates on www.ifa.de/en/exhibitions/ifa-gallery-stuttgart/
The exhibition “A Natural Order of Things” shows a selection of the artistic works of Lothar Baumgarten (1944–2018) and Gabriel Rossell Santillán (born 1976).
Different forms of collaboration and community emerge in their artistic practice. Baumgarten explores the relationship between art and ethnography and that between culture and nature; Rossell Santillán is concerned with co-authorship and bringing together different voices of alternative knowledge. Both artists explore the political implications of representation, using photography, film, text and sound to connect collective memory (or collective forgetting) with personal memories.
Until 13 June 2021
“Andrea Acosta, Joseph Beuys, Anne Duk Hee Jordan, Sara Ouhaddou: Notes of a Seeress”
ifa-Gallery Berlin, Linienstr. 139/140, 10115 Berlin
Please find out about the opening hours, access and Corona updates on www.ifa.de/en/exhibitions/ifa-gallery-berlin/
Are prophecies akin to interpretations, memories, sketches or schematic images? What do they tell us? Do they unlock new realms in which we can think and act? These questions form the starting point of the exhibition Notes of a Seeress, which takes its name from a 1958 drawing by Joseph Beuys. To mark the 100th anniversary of his birth, the ifa Gallery Berlin is presenting drawings by Joseph Beuys from the ifa art collection in dialogue with the artistic positions of Andrea Acosta, Anne Duk Hee Jordan and Sara Ouhaddou. Both Beuys and the featured artists address frequently overlooked and disregarded traditional forms of—often collective—knowledge. Based on the relationship to found materials, they use humorous, poetic and communicative gestures to examine economic and ecological issues, initiating processes that have the potential to effect lasting social change.
biennale stories. The German Pavilion #1
The first edition of a new digital storytelling format on the German Pavilion at the Venice Biennale, the biennale stories, will be launched in May. Issue #1 Pebbles, Pomp and Patrons is dedicated to Venice, a place of longing, with its oldest and most renowned art biennale in the world. Its concept of national exhibition buildings is unique. And so is the listed German Pavilion building with its challenging history and architecture. Learn more about ifa´s role as commissioner and listen to the ground crunching underfoot while moving through the Giardini!
Artwork of the Month
ifa’s art collection encompasses 23000 works. In the series “Artwork of the Month”, presented in analogue form in the Stuttgart Gallery and also online, ifa will exhibit works by former Biennale artists Katharina Fritsch, Thomas Ruff, Katharina Sieverding, Joseph Beuys, Isa Genzken, Hans Haacke and Gerhard Richter in 2021.
On ifa´s Art Instagram channel @ifa.visualarts several series review the past 50 years of work on, with and in the German Pavilion as well as 50 years of work at the ifa Gallery Stuttgart.
In the series “Behind the Scenes” several people who contributed to the realisation of the German Pavilion´s editions over the last decades give exclusive insights into the process of their work regularly. They talk about exciting experiences and tell background stories that hardly anyone knows yet.
An artistic contribution to the German Pavilion will be presented here every second Thursday. These ‘throwbackthursday posts’ invite you to travel back every other week to a new biennial year and allow you to immerse yourself in the historical positions of the pavilion.
This year, ifa is continuously presenting fifty years of exhibition history through selected exhibition posters. They show the transformation of the ifa Gallery Stuttgart from a centre for cultural exchange to a transcultural platform for contemporary art.
Miriam Kahrmann, +49 (0)711 2225 135, firstname.lastname@example.org
ifa (Institut für Auslandsbeziehungen) is Germany’s oldest intermediary organisation for interna-tional cultural relations, having celebrated its centenary in 2017. It promotes a peaceful and enrich-ing coexistence between people and cultures worldwide. ifa supports artistic and cultural exchange in exhibition, dialogue and conference programmes, and it acts as a centre of excellence for interna-tional cultural relations. It is part of a global network and relies on sustainable, long-term partner-ships.
It is supported by the Federal Foreign Office of the Federal Republic of Germany, the state of Ba-den-Württemberg and its capital Stuttgart. www.ifa.de/en