Bonaventure Soh Bejeng Ndikung is an independent curator and Curator at Large of the Documenta 14, which took place 2017 both in Athen and Kassel.
Ndikung initiated 2010 the project space SAVVY Contemporary Berlin, as a laboratory for artistic and intellectual reflection and a space for dialogue between the so-called western art and the non-western art. SAVVY earned local, as well as international recognition and worked so far with more than 45 artists living in 5 continents. Ndikung is chief editor and creator of the magazine SAVVY art.contemporary.african, a bilingual e-journal with critical reviews on contemporary African art. As a curator, art director and advisor he has worked for many international Exhibition projects and festivals, for example for the Marrakesh Biennale, the Tensta Konsthall, Sweden, the Goethe-Institut, the Institut für Auslandsbeziehungen (ifa) and the Centre Culturel Français in Algier.
Ndikung was born in 1977 in Cameroon, received his doctorate in medical biotechnology in Berlin and studied subsequently biophysics in Montpellier.
Nasan Tur, artist, born in 1974, studied in Offenbach and Frankfurt and lives in Berlin. The central theme of his work is the fragile self-expression of people in public spaces and the subliminal codes of communication. Tur has been awarded with numerous prizes in the past 15 years (including the Will-Grohmann-Preis of the Akademie der Künste, Berlin 2012 and Villa Massimo, Rome 2014). His works are featured in renowned international collections. His recent solo exhibitions include: Running Blind, Kunst Haus Wien; Nasan Tur, Deweer Gallery, Otegem, Belgium (2016), L'ombra Della Luce, Musei di Villa Torlonia - Casino Nobile / Bunker, Rome (2015); Blain | Southern, London (2015); Christine König Gallery, Vienna (2015); Kunstraum Innsbruck, Innsbruck, Austria (2014); First Shot, Kunsthal 44 Moen, Denmark (2014); Kunsthalle Mannheim (2011); Galeri Mana, Istanbul (2011); Der unbekannte Ritter, installation in public space, Universalmuseum Joanneum, Graz (2011); Kunstmuseum Stuttgart (2009); Yapi Kredi Art Gallery, Istanbul, (2009); Goethe Institute Belgrade (2009); Lie Low, Project RIM, Taller Publico, Mexico City (2006).
Natascha Sadr Haghighian
Artist, Professor of Sculpture at the Hochschule für Künste Bremen
Natascha Sadr Haghighian, born in 1963 in Teheran, now lives in Berlin. She first became known for her scholarly artistic work in such different forms and formats as video, performance, installation, text and sound. In 2010 she was awarded the Hugo Boss Prize and in 2013 she participated in the documenta. Her solo exhibitions have been shown at Mackba Barcelona, in the Bonniers Konsthall Stockholm (both in 2012), at the Frankfurter Kunstverein (2008) and in the GAM Bologna (2006), among other locations. She has participated in numerous international group exhibitions, including at the ICA London in 2007 and at the Kunsthaus Bregenz in 2011.
Director of the Kölnischer Kunstverein since 2013
Moritz Wesseler, born in 1980, showed his first exhibitions in 2003 in the legendary Kabinett für aktuelle Kunst in Bremerhaven - which his father had founded in 1967 – alongside such artists as Cathy Wilkes, Martin Boyce, Ceal Floyer, Anri Sala and Luc Tuymans, among others. In 2009/2010 he co-curated the series Double at MMK Frankfurt, a series of reconstructions of historical exhibits. As part of his academic traineeship at the Kunstsammlung Nordrhein Westfalen, Wesseler supervised exhibit projects by Michael Sailstorfer, Kris Martin, Jordon Wolfson and Tomas Saraceno. As the Artistic Director of Fürstenberg Zeitgenössisch in Donaueschingen / Heiligenberg he cooperated with artists such as Dirk Bell, Julian Göthe, Petrit Halilaj, Dorota Jurczak, Gareth Moore and João Maria Gusmão & Pedro Paiva .
Director of the Hamburg Kunstverein since January 2014
Bettina Steinbrügge, born in 1970 in Ostercappeln (Lower Saxony), between 1998 and 2001 worked for the Kassel Kunstverein and in 2000 she also worked for the 4th Werkleitz Biennale. From 2001-2007 she was the artistic director at the Halle für Kunst in Lüneburg. She worked as a research assistant and curator in the management team of the art space in the University of Lüneburg, where she oversaw several exhibitions as part of the EU projects transform and translate. Subsequently, from 2009, she lectured on the postgraduate masters programme of the CCC at the Haute École d’Art et de Design in Geneva. Until Autumn 2011 Bettina Steinbrügge also curated for La Kunsthalle Mulhouse, where she designed the exhibitions The End of the World as we know it and L’Idée de Nature, as well as a solo exhibition with Seb Patane. In addition, Steinbrügge has been a member of the programme team at Forum Expanded at the International Film Festival in Berlin (Berlinale) since 2007. In Winter 2010 Steinbrügge was appointed curator for contemporary art at the Belvedere in Vienna, where she was part of the team that shaped the profile of the new 21er Haus.
Artist and Professor of Painting at the Kunstakademie in Düsseldorf
Katharina Grosse, born in Freiburg in 1961, lives in Berlin, she was a winner of the Villa Romana Prize in 1992. At the Kunstakademie in both Münster and Düsseldorf, Grosse studied under Norbert Tadeusz and Gotthard Graubner. She was professor at the Kunsthochschule Berlin-Weißensee from 2000 to 2010. Katharina Grosse uses a compressor-powered spraygun for her artwork. Grosse created her first murals using this technique as part of her contribution to the Biennale of Sydney in 1998 and, in the same year, in the Kunsthalle Bern. In subsequent years, Grosse sprayed larger surfaces which, from 2001, also continued on into outdoor areas. Works by Katharina Grosse are located in the museum collections of the Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris, the Kunsthaus Zürich, the Kunstmuseum Bonn, the Städtische Galerie in the Lenbachhaus, Munich, the Museo Serralves, Porto, the Sprengel Museum Hannover, the De Pont Museum, Tilburg and the Gallery of Modern Art, Queensland, among other places.
Director of the Heidelberger Kunstverein
Susanne Weiß (born 1976 in Berlin) studied Museology at the HTW Berlin and is the Artistic Director of the Heidelberger Kunstverein. Weiß has worked at international art institutions such as the Royal Academy in London, the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford and the Israel Museum in Jerusalem. From 2007 to 2008 she was Head of the Kunsthaus Dresden – Städtische Galerie für Gegenwartskunst, where she was responsible for exhibition projects including "Kopfkino" and "Under Influence". In late 2008, she realized the performance project "Ruhe und Ordnung" with Ulf Aminde at JET in Berlin. From 2009 to 2010 she worked as a Robert Bosch Cultural Manager for the Goethe Institut Gulf Region, Sharjah Museum Department in the Emirate of Sharjah. Susanne Weiss is a member of the RealismusStudio, part of the Neue Gesellschaft für Bildende Kunst (NGBK) in Berlin.
Discoteca Flaming Star (Cristina Gómez Barrio, Wolfgang Mayer)
Artists and professors at the Art Academy in Stuttgart
The artist group Discoteca Flaming Star was founded in 1998 by Cristina Gómez Barrio and Wolfgang Mayer. Discoteca Flaming Star teaches at the Department of Visual Arts / Intermedial Design at the Staatliche Akademie der Bildenden Künste (ABK) in Stuttgart. Cristina Gómez Barrio (born 1973 in Alhambra, Spain) studied Fine Art in Madrid, Munich and Berlin. In 2003 she was involved in the artist-in-residence programme of the International Studio and Curatorial Program (ISCP), New York and from 2005 - 2006 she was a Fellow of the Whitney Independent Study Program in New York. Wolfgang Mayer (born 1967 in Wertach) studied at the Akademie der Bildenden Künste (AdBK) in Munich and completed a fellowship as part of Nan Goldin's class at the Salzburg Summer Academy. From 1996 to 1997 he participated in the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) scholarship at the School of Visual Arts in New York. Their joint installations and performances have taken place at venues including Artists Space, the Whitney Museum and The Kitchen (all New York), the Museum Moderner Kunst [mumok] (Vienna), the Centro de Arte 2 de Mayo (Madrid), Galerie Freymond-Guth (Zurich) and the Tate Modern (London).
Artist and professor at the Academy of Fine Arts, Hamburg
Jutta Koether, born 1958 in Cologne, is a german painter, performer, musician, writer, critic and theoretician, who lives and works in Berlin and New York. Koether was editor and (from 1985) co-editor of the music and pop culture magazine Spex and reviewer of many magazines like Texte zur Kunst, FlashArt and ArtScribe. Koether's work includes a variety of activities such as painting, performance, film and music; also her political and journalistic activities are considered by the artist as part of its artistic practice: She describes herself as "painter, performer, participant" and often works in common projects with other artists, for example with the musicians of Sonic Youth, Kim Gordon and Thurston Moore and Steven Parrino. Koether is also an active teacher and has taught teaching assignment at the Hochschule für bildende Künste, Hamburg, the School of Visual Arts, New York, at the Hochschule der Künste, Berlin, at the Bard College, New York and at the Cooper Union, New York. Since 2010 she is professor of painting / drawing at the Academy of Fine Arts in Hamburg.
Director of the Bundeskunsthalle Bonn
Rein Wolfs (born 1960) is since 1st March 2013 director of the Bundeskunsthalle Bonn. Since January 2008 he was the artistic director of the Kunsthalle Fridericianum. From 2002 until 2007 he was the director of exhibitions of the Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen in Rotterdam. In 2003 he curated the Dutch pavilion at the Venice Biennial. From 1996 until 2001 he was the first director of the Migros Museum für Gegenwartskunst in Zurich, where he also established the magazine Material in 1999. Among his most important exhibitions were shows with Douglas Gordon, Maurizio Cattelan, Angela Bulloch and Cady Noland at Migros Museum and retrospective exhibitions with Bas Jan Ader and Rirkrit Tiravanija as well as large shows with Urs Fischer and Erik van Lieshout at Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen. At Kunsthalle Fridericianum he curated major exhibitions with Christoph Büchel, Pawel Althamer and Meschac Gaba and shows with Klara Lidèn, Latifa Echakhch, Daniel Knorr, Cyprien Gaillard and Navid Nuur. Rein Wolfs is a member of several international committees and work as a publisher regularly.
Janneke de Vries
Head of the Gesellschaft für Aktuelle Kunst (GAK), Bremen
Janneke de Vries (born 1968) studied Art History, Modern German Literature and European Ethnology at the Phillips-Universität Marburg and the Universität Hamburg. Even during her degree, Janneke de Vries worked freelance at the Museum für Moderne Kunst (MMK) in Frankfurt am Main and was a published art critic in both the Frankfurter Rundschau newspaper and the magazines artist (Bremen) and Bildende Kunst. From 1999 to 2003 de Vries was editor-in-chief of the art magazine artkaleidoskope in Frankfurt/M. As well as freelance creation of projects and a role as a research assistant for Yilmaz Dziewior at the Kunstverein in Hamburg, she also became the Head of the Kunstverein Braunschweig in 2006. Since 2008 she has been Head of the Gesellschaft für Aktuelle Kunst (GAK) in Bremen and a freelance critic for publications including the art magazines artist and Texte zur Kunst.
Artist and professor at the Academy of Fine Arts, Dresden
Ulrike Grossarth (born 1952) studied dance at the Else-Lang-Schule in Cologne and the Folkwang Hochschule in Essen, where she established a branch of the Free International University. She was a guest professor at various universities and since 1998 has been Professor of Übergreifendes künstlerisches Arbeiten (General Artistic Works) at the Academy of Fine Arts, Dresden. She was represented at the documenta X in 1997 with BAU I. In 2009 the Academy of Fine Arts, Berlin awarded Ulrike Grossarth the Käthe Kollwitz Prize. In her pictorial and sculptural works, dances, solo pieces, films, sketches, performances and seminars, Ulrike Grossarth constantly returns her focus to questioning the body, space and the relationship between the material environment and acting persons.
Artist and professor at the Academy of Fine Arts, Muthesius Kunsthochschule Kiel
Antje Majewski (born 1968) is a painter, video artist and photographer and has been Professor of Fine Art at the Muthesius Art School, Kiel since 2010. She studied art history, history and philosophy in Cologne, Florence and Berlin before becoming a full-time artist in the 1990s. Graz Kunsthaus dedicated an extensive solo exhibition to her work in the winter of 2011/12 entitled The Gimel World. How to Make Objects Talk. Before 2011 she had solo exhibitions at the Salzburger Kunstverein (2008), at the Basler Kunsthalle (2001) and at Neugerriemschneider Gallery, Berlin, among others.
Professor for curatorial theory at the Staatliche Hochschule für Gestaltung, Karlsruhe
Anja Nathan-Dorn (born 1971) was co-director of the Cologne Kunstverein from 2007 to 2011 alongside Kathrin Jentjens. During this period she dedicated solo exhibitions to artists including Nora Schultz, Olivier Foulon, Omer Fast, Stephen Prina and Kerstin Brätsch & DAS INSTITUT. Prior to this she worked in Cologne as a freelance critic, writing for the magazines Frieze, Texte zur Kunst and Metropolis M, and curator. Anja Nathan-Dorn studied art history, economics and theatre, film and media studies in Cologne and Florence.
Head of the Artcollection Erste Group, Vienna
The art historian Kathrin Rhomberg, born 1963 in Bludenz, is head of the Artcollection Erste Group. 2010 she organised the 6th Berlin Biennial. From 2002 to 2007, she was director of the Kunstverein in Cologne and at the same time supervised (together with Marion von Osten) the Migration project launched by the German Federal Cultural Foundation. Together with Maria Hlavajova, she is a founding director of Tranzit, a long-term initiative by the Erste Bank Group for the promotion of contemporary art projects in Central Europe, which was founded in 2002. In 2000, she was a co-curator of Manifesta 3 - European Biennale for contemporary art in Ljubljana. From 1990 to 2001, she was the curator and manager of the Secession exhibition hall in Vienna.
Willem de Rooij
Artist and professor at Städelschule, Frankfurt/M
Willem de Rooijborn in 1969 in Beverwijk in the Netherlands, lives in Berlin and teaches at the Städelschule in Frankfurt. In autumn 2010, he filled the Mies van der Rohe-building of the Neue Nationalgalerie in Berlin with an individual exhibition. Up until the death of Jeroen de Riijke in 2006, the two artists had worked together for twelve years on 35- und 16-millimetre films, photographs, objects, installations and prints. Their joint works analyse the conventions of presentation and representation and explore the tense relationship between socially and politically orientated and autonomous production of images. The MAMbo in Bologna and the Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen art collection dedicated large exhibitions to their work in 2008. In 2005, de Riijke and de Rooij represented the Netherlands at the Venice Biennial.
Artist and professor at the Academy of Fine Arts in Dusseldorf
The sculptor Rita McBride, born in 1960 in Des Moines (Iowa), is professor at the Academy of Fine Arts in Dusseldorf
since 2003. After graduating in 1982 from Bard College in New York she continued her artistic training at the California Institute of the Arts. In 1991/92 she was a scholarship holder at the American Academy in Rome and in 1999 the DAAD artists-in-berlin program invited her to Berlin. From 1999 to 2000, McBride held a visiting professorship at the Academy of Fine Arts in Munich and at the École nationale supérieure des beaux-arts in Paris. Since the end of the 1980's, she has had a number of international exhibitions including at the Museum Abteiberg in Mönchengladbach (2008), the Kunstmuseum Liechtenstein (2002), the Vienna Secession (2000) and in the framework of the Berlin Biennial in 2008.
Dr. Susanne Gaensheimer
Direktor of the Museum for Modern Art (MMK) in Frankfurt/M
Dr. Susanne Gaensheimer, born in 1967 in Munich, is director of the Museum for Modern Art (MMK) in Frankfurt/M. After studying the history of art in Munich and Hamburg she completed the Independent Study Programme of the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York between 1995 and 1996. After a research fellowship at the Städtischen Galerie in the Lenbachhaus in Munich (1998-1999), during which she curated, among other things, the exhibition Moments in time with Douglas Gordon, Steve McQueen, Tacita Dean, Stan Douglas and others. Gaensheimer was the director of the Westfälischen Kunstverein in Münster from 1999 to 2001 and was then collection manager and curator for contemporary art in the Städtischen Galerie in the Lenbachhaus in Munich until 2008.
Director of the Museum Abteiberg in Mönchengladbach
Susanne Titz has been director of the Museum Abteiberg at Mönchengladbach since October 2004. The Museum was reopened last autumn after a vast reconstruction scheme, which involved the re-organisation of the collections. Born in Stolberg in 1964, Susanne Titz studied history, art history and foreign languages and literatures at the universities of Cologne, Hamburg and Bonn. She completed her studies with a thesis on the influence of structuralism on art in the United States during the 1960s and ‘70s. Thereafter she received a grant for a study period in New York, awarded by the Ludwig-Stiftung für internationale Kunst und Verständigung. Starting in 1997 she directed the Neuer Aachener Kunstverein, which in 2000 received the Adam Alsheimer Prize, awarded annually to the European art association most distinguished for its programme of exhibitions and other initiatives. Among the projects promoted by Susanne Titz were the first personal shows of Franz Ackermann, Fiona Banner, William Engelen, Morgan Fisher, Anne-Mie Van Kerckhoven, Rita McBride, Lucy McKenzie, Jonathan Meese, Anselm Reyle, Andreas Siekmann, Catherine Sullivan, Corinne Wasmuht and other artists, as well as interdisciplinary initiatives such as Valie Export. Psycho-Prognose (1998), Modell, Modell... (2000; with Björn Dahlem, Christian Jankowski, Peter Piller, Daniel Roth, Edwin Zwakmanand others), Wiederaufnahme/Retake (2001; with Dave Allen, Andrea Bowers, Annika Eriksson, Rodney Graham, Christian Marclay, Hans Niehus, Adrian Piper, Slave Pianos).
Eran Schaerf, was born in Tel Aviv in 1962 and has lived in Berlin since 1985. His works are complex compositions interweaving historical events and contemporary politics with individual and personal experiences. His narratives, expressed in a variety of media, provide access to mobile scenic elements derived from philosophy, the history of architecture and of design. He often uses the principle of “re-enactments”, thanks to which he stratifies different narrative and temporal planes one above the other, causing past events to be seen in a new light. Eran Schaerf has exhibited in many important international shows, such as documenta 9 (1992), Sonsbeek (Arnheim, 1993) Manifesta 2 (Luxemburg) and Skulptur-projekten (Münster, 2007). Schaerf studied architecture and town planning, photography and video art. Since the mid 1990s he has been working with the philosopher Eva Meyer, chiefly in the field of films and radio plays. The silent version of their film Europa von weitem (Europe from a distance, 1999) shows scenes of everyday life in a number of European cities. In a third version of the same film the images are accompanied by a radio drama of the same name though made entirely independently of the images, despite which the simultaneous perception of the sound and the images produces a powerful synergistic effect.
Artist Ayse Erkmen, born in 1949 in Istanbul, lives in Istanbul and Berlin. In 1993, Ayse Erkmen received the scholarship from the Berlin Artists-in-Residence programme of the DAAD (German Academic Exchange Service). From 1998, she taught at the Gesamthochschule in Kassel as a guest lecturer and from 2000, she was a guest professor at the Städelschule in Frankfurt/M. Ayse Erkmen is internationally renowned for her – often temporary – artistic works and has taken part in various editions of the Istanbul Biennale, the Manifesta 1 in Rotterdam (1996), the Kwangju Biennale (2000) and the Berlin Biennale (2001) amongst others. Her contribution to the Sculpture Projects Münster 1997 was spectacular as was her project Shipped Ships (2001) in Frankfurt, which was part of the Deutsche Bank’s art series. Ayse Erkmen has had individual exhibitions at the Palais des Beaux Arts in Brussels (2004) and at the Secession in Vienna (2002) amongst others.
Dr. Beatrice von Bismarck
Art historian and professor for art history at the Hochschule für Grafik und Buchkunst (HfGB), Leipzig
Dr. Beatrice von Bismarck, lives in Leipzig and Berlin, completed a doctorate at the Art History Institute of the Free University in Berlin. From 1990 to 1993, she was the head of the 20th century department at the Städelsche Kunstinstitut in Frankfurt/M. During her time teaching at the University of Lüneburg (1993 to 1999), she helped to set up the University of Lüneburg’s Kunstraum (art space) and acted as its curator. Since 2000 Beatrice von Bismarck has been a professor of art history and visual studies at the Academy of Visual Arts in Leipzig as well as being the programme director of the Academy’s gallery, and pro-vice-chancellor since 2003. Approaches to cultural production that combine theory and practice are at the centre of her way of working. Her current fields of research include the concept of artistic work, aesthetics, the social and political potential of curatorial work, the consequences of globalisation for the cultural sphere and the functions of the post-modern image of the artist.