Updated: Feb 16, 2021
AICA Germany e. V. (German section of the Association Internationale des Critiques d'Art) announces awards for 2020. The Bauhaus Museum in Dessau is the “Museum of the Year” in the opinion of art critics. The building, which opened in 2019, is convincing on the one hand to keep alive the memory of the Bauhaus as the most important school for design in the 20th century, but on the other hand also to impressively transfer the idea of the Bauhaus into the present, according to the virtual general meeting of the German section of the International Art Critics Association - AICA.
The museum comprises of prized collection of around 49000 artifacts and is the second largest collection globally on the theme of the Bauhaus. The new museum has an exhibition space of 2,100 square meters and a total usable area of 3,500 square meters. The iconic building is designed by addenda architects (González Hinz Zabala) from Barcelona. The design was selected from 831 entries received worldwide in an open international competition held in 2015.
The courageous decision to place the new Bauhaus Museum in the center of Dessau on a faceless shopping street represents a successful "city repair" and contributes significantly to the cultural revival of the industrial city, which was badly bombed in World War II. While the collection began to be built up in 1976, the GDR was unable to purchase important works by the Bauhaus masters, partly due to a lack of foreign currency. Today's exhibition concept consequently does not focus on the world-famous school from art and design, but on teaching and learning, emphasizing creative processes instead of the Bauhaus myth. The work of the students gives a clear view of the intellectual inner workings of the university. “Bauhaus Experimental Facility - The Collection” as the title of the museum's permanent exhibition sums this up.
As part of the Bauhaus exhibition, the “Interlude” series presents current and historical contributions from art, architecture and photography. The "open stage" on the museum ground floor complements the stage in the historic Bauhaus building: This project is dedicated to learning in motion in cooperation with international dance ensembles. In addition to the temporary exhibitions, it represents another important component of the strong link between classic-modern and contemporary art that characterizes the Bauhaus Museum Dessau.
With the award “Exhibition of the Year”, the art critics of Germany honored the show “Artists and Agents - Performance Art and Secret Services”, which will open from autumn 2019 at the 'Hartware MedienKunstVerein' in Dortmund. On the 30th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall, this show shed light on the interaction between secret services and performance art as an art movement that, to the party dictatorships of Eastern Europe, appeared to be the most incalculable, western and decadent. On the question of what the secret services feared of the artists and what the monitored artists had to fear, the exhibition presented artistic positions from the perspective of secret service investigations. This required extensive research in the secret service archives of the former Eastern Bloc countries that were opened after 1990.
AICA Germany e. V. is the German section of the International Art Critics Association AICA (Association Internationale des Critiques d'Art) based in Paris, which today has 65 national sections and an open section with a total of more than 5,000 members in 95 countries. The global association was founded in 1948/1949 and recognized by UNESCO as a non-governmental organization (NGO) in 1950. In the German section since 1951, the members working in the field of art criticism who have their place of residence or their work center in Germany have been represented. AICA Germany works on the basis of the current statutes of AICA International and is organized as a legally competent registered association.
Head Image © Bauhaus Dessau Foundation