12th International Studio Program of the ACC Galerie Weimar and the City of Weimar

The Subversion of Standstill*

International Studio Program

12th International Studio Program 2006 'The Subversion of Standstill*'


Deadline was November 30, 2005

Artists of the 12th International Studio Program 2006

The jury´s meeting for the 12th International Studio Program of the ACC Galerie Weimar and the City of Weimar took place on December 10th, 2005. Out of 105 applications three artists have been selected for the residency in Weimar by the jury consisting of Jean-Baptiste Joly, Director of Akademie Schloss Solitude (Stuttgart), Dr. Helga Lutz, University Erfurt, Graduate School "Mediale Historiographien / Media of History - History of Media" (Erfurt/Weimar/Jena), Dr. Susanne Meyer-Büser, curator, Kunstraum München, Reneé Ridgway, artist/curator, (Amsterdam), Esther Schipper, Galerie Esther Schipper (Berlin) and Nina Wiedemeyer, art historian, Graduate School "Mediale Historiographien / Media of History - History of Media " (Erfurt/Weimar/Jena).

Claudia Hardi from Switzerland, Lene Berg from Norway and Patrick Ward from England will spend four months in Weimar and work on the theme of "The Subversion of Standstill".

The Subversion of Standstill*

Standstill or zero-growth, which unsettles or even alarms opportunists, economic planners and futurologists, leads for many others to relief from the unreasonable demands posed by life and the historical process.

For who welcomes an increase in wars, illnesses and epidemics, hardships and fears, arms potential and the rates of poverty? Being quiet, keeping quiet and pausing; these are now turning into virtues in the personal dealings of individuals who have become weary of their own helplessness. Calming down, not-carrying-on-this-way represent strong desires within an accelerated civilisation whose motto appears to be faster, higher and further. So the well-known slogan less is more may be extended to no more is everything. When life's tempo slows down, our capacity for observing, hearing and speaking more carefully develops. And isn't it necessary to stand still, to pause and become aware of ourselves before we can reflect on our own lives and that of society? In turn, such rejections of speed may trigger enduring uncertainty among the more restless. Opposition to the status quo (which is a permanent carry on as usual) may thus emerge from a simple decision to remain standing. And yet at a time when rapid and extensive changes are regarded as necessary - and if need be as positive - standstill and opposition to dynamics and change represent a comparatively rare and little considered topos.

"A phase of stagnation will always tend to follow, cyclically, on a surge of dynamism in the world narrative. Things that have been perceived as flowing or fleeting are then seen from the standpoint of their arrest, persistence and lethargy. Stagnant Waters allow space to question the conditions for a crisis-ridden belief in progress."

And so "after phases of appealing for innovation and proclaiming the new, the dominant factors now are the rhetoric of stillness, contemplation and stemming" the unwanted consequences of progress. Forms of artistic expression appear especially suited to the disclosure of such processes of stagnation as the eternal return of the old within the new - that is, as "policies of standstill". Practices of hesitation and standstill are visualised by a specifically artistic use of media. "Things completed and left behind by progress often return - disfigured and unresolved - in ghosts, spectres or retro-fashions." Artists in particular have always attempted to investigate the special ways in which past form and function continue to shape the new. They examine the supposedly old and passed down, "the outmoded; investigate leaps through time and the domain of the anachronistic." Where art halts our view, it does not lead to boredom, but to comprehension and precise recognition - subversion generated from the rejection of speed.

* The Program is based on the idea and concept of the conference "Standing Waters. Media and Temporalities of Stagnation" (scheduled from April 27 - 29, 2006) organized by the Graduate School "Mediale Historiographien / Media of History - History of Media" (supported by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft) of the Bauhaus-Universität Weimar, the Universität Erfurt and the Friedrich-Schiller-Universität Jena (http://www.mediale-historiographien.de).
All quotations (in "double quotes") in the text above are taken from that conference's concept paper.

Caused by an unfortunate mistake the copyright of the title and the concept of "Standing Waters. Media and Temporalities of Stagnation" by the Graduate School "Mediale Historiographien / Media of History - History of Media" had been violated through the announcement of the Studio Program. The ACC regrets this.