Europe (to the power of) n: Objectives
posted by: Barbara Steiner
Europe (to the power of) n asks about the role of art in creating communities, provides a utopian projection surface for everything that Europe could potentially be and stimulates critical thinking about Europe.
Europe is a frayed construction, whose contours have changed again and again over the course of the centuries – a projection surface for controversial values and moral concepts, for promises just as much as for failures. Nonetheless, it embodies the utopia of a community that not only allows for heterogeneity but understands it as a quality.
Europe (to the power of) n asks about the role of the arts in creating communities. In contrast with many debates concerning the concrete implementation and accomplishment of joint European agendas in the fields of politics and economics – which are of course imperative – utterances from the field of art allow alternative perspectives on (certainly also political and economic) perception, thoughts and actions. In this project, they put opinions and values we take for granted to the test, criticise hierarchies and asymmetries, demand that responsibility will be taken and voice doubts concerning the “naturally” given order of things.
In this respect art can begin a productive discussion about potential common values, about what Europe could be, both in the present and in the future, but it cannot close it down. In other words, the strength of art is to challenge perception, thinking and acting without giving us specific directions. This should not be seen as a weakness, although it is quite often viewed as such, but more as an incitement and an invitation to take part in the search for a possible course of action.
The project shall stimulate us to think critically about Europe. At the same time it is intended to provide a utopian projection surface for everything that Europe could potentially be. The project aims to raise a debate about the possibilities of a European community, which is heterogeneous and multi-voiced. It promotes an exchange of ideas, artworks, artists, curators, theorists, designers, between larger and smaller cities, larger and smaller institutions, museums, cultural centres and art as well as curatorial departments at universities and between art and other fields of society.
posted by Barbara Steiner