Program Friday

Conference during the day & closing event in the evening.
For the conference program please register by 11th June 2017 using this tool.

The Conference will be mainly in German, you can find the English program or translated program in the headlines.

The keynote speaker will investigate the links between the current lack of critical thinking in the field, exclusionary structures at hand and the discrimination that diversity workers experience in their daily professional lives. The panel discussions and workshops will explore the current state of play: while there is growing support for diversity work on both municipal and federal levels, marginalised communities have long been creating space for their own arts and cultural practices. And yet, many marginalised stakeholders face institutional barriers and are often excluded from the mainstream for not conforming to dominant notions of aesthetic practice.  A number of organisations are addressing this issue by offering professional development opportunities to those excluded from the arts and culture sector. Today’s program will see a lawyer giving practical advise on how refugees can be remunerated for the work they do. We will also be introduced to two international empowerment movements – Disability Arts and Post-Black Art – each with its own notion of what it means to be positioned as marginalised.  Language will also be a key topic today, with the presentation of an online glossary that offers practical ways to define non-discriminatory language and include it in ones work.

9.30 – 10.30 am
Registration in the lobby (PODEWIL)

Klosterstr. 68, 10179 Berlin

10.30 – 11.00 am
Welcoming speeches

Dr. Klaus Lederer, Senator für Kultur und Europa
Moritz van Dülmen, Geschäftsführer Kulturprojekte Berlin GmbH
Bahareh Sharifi & Timo Köster, Team Interventionen

11.00 am Keynote

This lecture will explore the notion of decolonial aesthetics through the lens of art education and in doing so will look at the pitfalls of diversity politics. Decoloniality is understood here as a liberatory project that aims to transform Eurocentric theories of knowledge. It stresses the centrality of different (local) geopolitical contexts in the production of knowledge and works to create space for neglected epistemologies. What might decoloniality look like in the classroom? And how does taking on the role of ‘the Other’ relate to the mechanisms of institutional diversity policies and practices?

12.00 pm  Break

1.00 pm Workshops, inputs & panels

Paola De Martin presents selected excerpts of interviews she conducted with creatives from socioeconomically disadvantaged backgrounds. De Martin will share how breaking away from the normativity of aesthetic categories has become the Leitmotiv of the aesthetics of her social mobility. This workshop will explore hidden class dynamics at work in this normativity and Leitmotiv and will look at alternatives to their usual invisibility.

The topic of diversity in arts and culture is gaining ground as a topic to be reckoned with on local, federal and national levels. Differing cultural policies, processes und programs have emerged depending on respective municipal and federal organisational structures and priorities. This panel aims to look at these different approaches and processes, explore opportunities, experiences und challenges, and nurture long-term working relationships between municipal and federal stakeholders.

With the London Paralympics came a small boom in Disability Arts in Britain, bringing the works of artists with disabilities further into the mainstream. Yet there remain still many structural and institutional barriers for artists with disabilities. The history of Disability Arts in England will be presented here along with strategies artists with disabilities employ to address these barriers. We will explore how these approaches enrich various forms of art.

The term post-black art was introduced in 2001 at Freestyle, the first of a series of four exhibitions at Studio Museum Harlem in New York. Post-black art was critically perceived for pushing beyond the discursive realm of the arts and instantly becoming a conversation about society and identity politics at large. Thelma Golden’s declaration that “post-black” is “the new black” in an interview with the Seattle Post in 2003, fueled a rhetoric that became common-place during the first Black presidency. “Everything from sustainability to being Gay” was deemed the “new black”, a lingo that even corporate media soon picked on. Post-black’s appearance as a catchy term for new emerging identity politics in the USA resulted in the overshadowing of any relevant conversations about the body of art at hand. This talk will return our focus to post-black artwork and curatorial framing. It will highlight its significance as an art movement that, using different means to its predecessors, repeatedly points towards the construction of both the category ‘Black’ and the social reality it accompanies.

There is an under-representation of marginalised groups within arts and culture establishments. A number of training programs for marginalised groups have been set up to address this under-representation. While these training programs employ contrasting methods and approaches, they all share an aim to raise awareness about exclusionary practices and structures. In discussion with *foundationClass, diverCITYLAB and The Artist Training, this panel will share its first-hand experience and insights on the topic. What opportunities have arisen in their attempts to address discrimination? What challenges have the panel met? What opportunities and problems arise for project participants? Shouldn’t these topics be addressed in the training programmes as the key topics they in fact are?

3.00 pm Break

3.30 pm Workshops, inputs & panels

There is one sticking point in the mainstream discourse on diversity in arts and culture: how can sustainable change be created within organisations and institutions? Marginalised communities have long had some answers to this question. Also in light of their exclusion from the mainstream, marginalised groups have the propensity to create their own spaces for art and culture. Three organisations that started as community projects will tell their stories of developing from their community roots into established organisations. We will hear about and explore the challenges and successes they have met along the way.

Like it’s current arts, culture, economy and politics, Berlin’s cityscape is riddled with colonial continuities. Viewed with a critical eye, the Berlin district of Mitte reveals a red thread stretching from the slave trade to colonialism to National Socialism and beyond.  Both colonial violence and anti-colonial resistance are undeniably imprinted in Germany’s daily life. This tour will follow the traces of colonialism and resistance through Berlin’s streets (beginning at Ermelerhaus, moving up M-Straße to Humboldt University and Forum).

The arts and culture scene is often exclusionary, with very little room given to the stories of marginalised communities. Certain groups are often only talked about instead of space allowed for people to talk for themselves. Projects that hold a critique of power asymmetries and have a peer-to-peer approach should be a must in the arts and cultural sector (especially in refugee contexts). Central to this approach is that refugees are renumerated for the work they do. Unfortunately this is often not the case. On the one hand, arts education funders often do not support paid opportunities for refugees. On the other hand, there is a lack of legal knowledge amongst stakeholders as to where the avenues for employing and paying refugees are. Nina Hager, Refugee and Asylum Lawyer, will give an overview of where opportunities to pay lie.

In collaboration with teachers, students and artists, KontextSchule is currently developing an online-glossary for schools. The glossary defines terms found in postcolonial and queer theory aswell as in critical education studies. With view to their applicable use in schools, terms such as lookism, empowerment, postcolonial and critical whiteness are defined using an array of examples. The glossary also offers links to teaching and learning resources for each entry. The diversity of author-voices involved in the project is reflected in both the different styles of language used (from journalististic to academic to lyrical), and in the various mediums available (text, podcast, illustration, video). This workshop aims to present this collaborative project-in-process and bring together authors and practitioners from schools, the arts and activist circles to explore how the glossary might be best used and further developed.

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