A Children’s Kingdom—Paweł Althamer and Friends

A Children’s Kingdom—Paweł Althamer and Friends

Ludwig Forum Aachen

Draftmen’s Congress, initiated by Paweł Althamer, A Children’s Kingdom, Ludwig Forum Aachen, 2014. Photo: Ludwig Forum Aachen/Carl Brunn.

June 8, 2014

A Children’s Kingdom—Paweł Althamer and Friends
June 1–September 21, 2014

Ludwig Forum Aachen
Jülicher Straße 97-109
52070 Aachen


The Polish artist Paweł Althamer has just started a diverse, subtle, and experimental art project. For four months, he and his friends from the artist group Reactor—Sculpture Lab based in Warsaw moved into the Ludwig Forum Aachen and seek to shed light on themes such as power, authority, and freedom from a completely different perspective: from the standpoint of childhood. The motivation to try something so different and daring is the 1,200th anniversary of Charlemagne’s death, one of the most powerful rulers in the Middle Ages.

Together with children, teens and adults, a Children’s Kingdom is being established that extends from the garden and courtyard of the Ludwig Forum, out across public space, and finally annexes St. Elisabeth’s Church opposite. In workshops and performance actions these locations are regenerated and transformed: the church occupied, costumes designed, monuments created. The motor propelling these artistic transformations is the candid naivety and creativity of children, which opens up new perspectives for adults as well.

A Draftsmen’s Congress takes place in the heart of the museum. Here walls and floors may be used for drawings—an open invitation to everyone to enter discussions via drawn images. In addition, an Open Academy provides a platform to create own works. The growing exhibition will show these later on. The highlight is a festival and parade in fantasy uniforms on the main road in front of the museum on September 14.

Althamer’s concern is to identify action-oriented experiments with freedom. The Children’s Kingdom is thus a laboratory for democracy and democratic practice.

The President of the European Parliament, Martin Schulz, is patron of the exhibition.

Entry to the museum is free of charge during A Children’s Kingdom.

Artists: Paweł Althamer, Czarli Bajka, Paweł Chmielewski, Konrad Chmielewski, Witold Nazarkiewicz, Przemysław Pietrzak, Tomasz Waszczeniuk and Anna Zielińska

Curators: Dr. Brigitte Franzen and Esther Boehle; Assistant Curator: Julia Küchle

Sponsored by Kulturstiftung des Bundes (German Federal Cultural Foundation), BMW Group, Verein der Freunde des Ludwig Forums, Adam Mickiewicz Institute, and Peter and Irene Ludwig Stiftung. Partner: stadtteilbüro aachen nord (Soziale Stadt Aachen-Nord), WDR 3.

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June 8, 2014

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