Teaching Art — Kunst Lehren Book Launch

Teaching Art — Kunst Lehren Book Launch


November 7, 2007
Teaching Art — Kunst Lehren Book Launch
Teaching Art — Kunst Lehren

Edited by Heike Belzer and Daniel Birnbaum

Verlag der Buchhandlung Walther König, Cologne 2007

English/German, 376 pages,

ISBN 978-3-86560-339-5

“I don’t think art can be taught. I really don’t,” states John Baldessari in an interview students of the Städelschule made with him earlier this year in connection with his recent exhibition at the Portikus. That is a tough statement to print in a book with the title Teaching Art.

This is a book about the Städelschule today and about some of the activities through which our students get exposed to art and to the theories of art as well as to practicing artists from around the world. All the contributors to this book have been linked to our school, either as faculty or as guests for workshops and seminars. The contributors include Thomas Bayrle, Johan Bettum, Daniel Birnbaum, Okwui Enwezor, Isabelle Graw, Michael Krebber, Pamela M. Lee, Niklas Maak, Vanessa Joan Müller, Tobias Rehberger, Willem de Rooij, Simon Starling, Jan Verwoert, Mark Wigley and many more.

Wolfgang Tillmans’s contribution is a series of photographs portraying the daily life in the school.

“The Städelschule is an experimental school in the sense that we are interested in probing the very boundaries of what an educational institution can be. The filmmaker Peter Kubelka’s activities in the 1980s and 90s involving music and food (and even live animals from a circus) are legendary. A more recent example is Gasthof (2002), a one-week event during which the whole school was turned into a kind of inn. Hundreds of artists and students from other schools were invited to stay in our studios and to participate in lively discussions about the future of art. Through projects like this, the Städelschule has played a central role in the recent discussions about the art school as one of the rare zones where experimentation is still possible in spite of an ever more controlling art market and its increasing demand for commodities.” (From Daniel Birnbaum’s preface “Teaching Art: A Proposal

from Frankfurt”).

On Novermber 14th, 6.30 pm: book launch and signing with, among others, Thomas Bayrle, Isabelle Graw, Wolfgang Tillmans and Tobias Rehberger.

Place: Buchhandlung Walther König, Domstr. 6, 60311 Frankfurt am Main

1. ‘Ignorance is a treasure of infinite price’ (Paul Valéry). Most of us have a lot to unlearn.

2. Key artists who are also great teachers are rare. Find them, and much else will follow. They don’t need to agree on anything and should represent only themselves.

3. Wonderful things can happen between disciplines, but you don’t need to tear down the walls. There are doors. (Just leave them unlocked.)

4. Something happens to a thing when it’s displayed. An art school is not an exhibition but students should be close to exhibitions.

5. Food can be as important as philosophy, the best teaching may happen during meals. (A good canteen is helpful.)

6. Money is not evil but don’t forget: there are much more exciting things than a sold work of art. Is the ideal school a monastery or a bazaar? Yes.

7. There is never just one way to do art. John Baldessari and Thomas Bayrle (my heroes) have shown this in their teaching, and their students around the world keep proving it. (What can be shown cannot be said: ‘Whereof one cannot speak, thereof one must be silent.’ Just do it!)

If you find these statements interesting (or mystifying), you need to get Teaching Art — Kunst Lehren.

Image above:

An evening with Peter Kubelka in the Städelschule, Frankfurt am Main

RSVP for Teaching Art — Kunst Lehren Book Launch
November 7, 2007

Thank you for your RSVP.

Städelschule will be in touch.


e-flux announcements are emailed press releases for art exhibitions from all over the world.

Agenda delivers news from galleries, art spaces, and publications, while Criticism publishes reviews of exhibitions and books.

Architecture announcements cover current architecture and design projects, symposia, exhibitions, and publications from all over the world.

Film announcements are newsletters about screenings, film festivals, and exhibitions of moving image.

Education announces academic employment opportunities, calls for applications, symposia, publications, exhibitions, and educational programs.

Sign up to receive information about events organized by e-flux at e-flux Screening Room, Bar Laika, or elsewhere.

I have read e-flux’s privacy policy and agree that e-flux may send me announcements to the email address entered above and that my data will be processed for this purpose in accordance with e-flux’s privacy policy*

Thank you for your interest in e-flux. Check your inbox to confirm your subscription.