Thank you all wonderful panelists and participants to our symposium. These were some truly inspiring days with many impulses for further collaboration in all sorts of different constellations - now let's take this further!

On 23./24. November 2017 we met at the Akademie der Künste, Berlin, for our symposium »Fragile Affinities-(re)strengthening international artistic collaboration«, organised by IGBK in cooperation with Akademie der Künste, Berlin, on the occasion of IGBK's 60th anniversary.

Have a look at the pictures of our gathering (photos by Jörg Wagner), a report on the event to follow soon.

See the original invitation and programme below.


Symposium in cooperation with Akademie der Künste, Berlin
23 and 24 November 2017

Programme (download

The event will be in German on 23 November (w interpreter German/English) and in English on 24 November. Free entry. Please register by email <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

The IGBK was founded in 1957 with the aim of bringing German artists back into the international discourse. It has been the guiding idea of IGBK since its beginning to foster worldwide cooperation amongst visual artists in all directions.

Today we are unfortunately experiencing political trends opposing to this objective, also in Europe. Against the background of authoritarian and nationalist movements in many countries, artists too are becoming growingly restricted in their rights to freedom or excluded from exchange.

We are concerned about the alarming developments in Turkey, the increasing erosion of democratic institutions in the EU Member States of Poland and Hungary, and the British vote to exit the EU. With this year’s election a nationalist party is 3rd strongest group in the German Bundestag.

Considering also most recent German-German history, these examples cause us to debate the ways in which artists preserve and shape necessary spaces for their activity in times of decreasing social cohesion within Europe, as well as in some places, under political repression.

How do artists position themselves between activist self-instrumentalisation, their ideological exploitation by political regimes or the flight into (inner) exile? We plan to discuss ways and means of strengthening international artistic collaboration as well as maintaining and promoting opportunities for exchange and communication.

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Location: Akademie der Künste Berlin, Hanseatenweg 10, 10557 Berlin.

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Thursday, 23 November 2017 Studiofoyer

  • 19:00 Welcome
    Prof. Dr. Wulf Herzogenrath (Director, Visual Arts Section, Akademie der Künste, Berlin)
    annette hollywood (Artist, Speaker of the Board of IGBK, Berlin)
  • 19:20 60 Years of IGBK - Fostering international artistic collaboration
    Prof. Dr. Frank Druffner (Acting Secretary-General, Kulturstiftung der Länder, Berlin)
    Dr. Roland Bernecker (Secretary-General, German Commission for UNESCO, Bonn)
    Andreas Schmid (Artist and Curator, Delegate of Internationales Künstler Gremium - IKG, Berlin)
  • 20:00 Focus German Democratic Republic (GDR) 1949-1990
    Lutz Dammbeck (Artist, Hamburg) and Via Lewandowsky (Artist, Berlin) in conversation, moderated by Prof. Dr. Wulf Herzogenrath
    Followed by Q&A
  • 21:00-22:00 End of the day in the Studiofoyer and Sesselclub

Friday, 24 November 2017 Studiofoyer

  • 10:00 Welcome
    Andrea Knobloch (Artist, Member of the Board of IGBK, Düsseldorf) and Dr. Anke Hervol (Secretary, Visual Arts Section, Akademie der Künste, Berlin)
  • 10:15 Focus Poland / Focus Hungary
    In case of Poland: Introduced and moderated by Katarzyna Wielga-Skolimowska (Bundeszentrale für Politische Bildung, Berlin), Contribution by Małgorzata Ludwisiak (Director, Ujazdowski Castle Centre for Contemporary Art, Warsaw)
    In case of Hungary:  Introduced and moderated by Esther Slevogt (Theatre Critic and Managing Director,, Berlin), Contribution by György Szabó (Artistic Director, Trafó House of Contemporary Arts, Budapest)
    Followed by a panel discussion and Q&A
  • 12:15 Lunch break
  • 13:30 Focus UK
    Introduced and moderated by Johanna Zinecker (Centre for British Studies, Humboldt Universität zu Berlin), Contributions by Jeanie Scott (a-n The Artists Information Company, London), Joseph Young (Sound Artist, Brighton and Berlin) and Claudia Zeiske (Director, Deveron Projects, Huntly)
    Followed by a panel discussion and Q&A
  • 15:30 Coffee break
  • 16:00 Focus Turkey
    Introduced and moderated by Achim Wagner (Poet and Translator, Berlin), Contributions by Selda Asal (Artist, Apartment Project, Berlin and Istanbul), belit sağ (videomaker/visual artist, Amsterdam) and Dr. Necmi Sönmez (Curator, Düsseldorf)
    Followed by a panel discussion and Q&A
  • 18:00 Snack
  • 19:00 Concluding discussion
    Selda Asal (Artist, Apartment Project, Berlin and Istanbul), Katherine Heid (Acting Secretary- General, Culture Action Europe, Brussels), Dr. Elke Ritt (Head of Arts, British Council Germany, Berlin), György Szabó (Artistic Director, Trafó House of Contemporary Arts, Budapest), Katarzyna Wielga-Skolimowska (Bundeszentrale für Politische Bildung, Berlin), moderated by Joanna Krawczyk (Head of Polish Office, Evens Foundation, Warsaw)
  • 21:00-22:00 End of the day in the Studiofoyer and Sesselclub

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A symposium organised by Internationale Gesellschaft der Bildenden Künste (IGBK) in cooperation with Akademie der Künste, Berlin on the occasion of IGBK's 60th anniversary.


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