Art, Self & System | Donatella Bernardi (ed.)

MA Fine Arts ZHdK Graduates 2018

The artist as entrepreneur has become a common topic of discussion. Here, however, we put forward the notions of “self” and “system.” First, every artistic practice is self-reflexive and self-contextualizing. Second, each system an artist builds allows for innovation. Let’s construct a space where we inevitably find ourselves together with others, even if we feel lonely, like a witch lost in a library of artists’ books. Let’s invent our right to do so. Let’s enter the world of smell and write about a megalomaniac art school while documenting a generation of art students and their studios with analogue photography. How does anyone even manage—from making objects to performing one’s own existence? Device, organon, animal.

328 pages, Sternberg Press, 2019
ISBN 978-3-956794-88-9


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Artikelnummer: 2019/18 Kategorien: , , Schlagwörter: , ,


This book arises from the 2018 activities of the MA Fine Arts program at the Zurich University of the Arts (ZHdK). It reflects the conviction that an art school can be a pedagogic nexus dedicated to the transmission of knowledge, experimentation, and research, as much as a locus for civic and critical debate and exhibition, involved in its community, locally and globally.

Contributions by Jeremy Ayer, Velibor Barisic, Donatella Bernardi, Amos Bollag, Katharina Brandl, Clifford E. Bruckmann, Philip Frowein, Désirée Myriam Gnaba, Noëlle Guidon, Adrian Hanselmann, Vanessà Heer, Dijan Kahrimanovic, Maya Lama, Matthias Liechti, Romain Mader, Marisa Meier, Javor Milanov, Gioia Dal Molin, Fidel Morf, Angi Nend, Dominic Neuwirth, Elodie Pong, Dorothree Richter, Evan Ruetsch, Nils Röller, Antonio Scarponi, Christoph Schifferli, Aurélie Strumans, Raphael Stucky, Claudia Stöckli, Jan Vorisek

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    We often think art’s all about money. Rather, it’s about energy. Immersing yourself in Lake Zurich, a hedge-fund office, a botanical garden, or a land-art piece built on ruins, is it possible to discern an energy particular to art? Art as a form of energy capable of encompassing the whole of life, more powerful than finance and its algorithms? Art as science or speculative fiction? We dwell in castles with Schrödinger’s cat until we give form to the formless: molecules and failed soldiers, art spaces previously owned by the mafia. We share tips about the tricks of the trade—only to intervene, emancipate, culminate, collapse, and (re)emerge. Let us look everywhere for ideas, and let us be gloriously out of touch: may we grow our capacity and courage to love. Catastrophism, miniskirt, particle.

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    320 pages, Sternberg Press, 2020
    ISBN 978-3-95679-576-3


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  • Art & Crisis. A Polyphonic Research on the Contemporary | Donatella Bernardi (ed.)

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    Polyphonic research into contemporary,  Art & Crisis” is the first volume of a new series aiming to explore the state of the world and cultural theories as seen through the lens of contemporary artistic practices and educational tools. Stemming from the Master Fine Arts at the Zurich University of the Arts, and edited by MFA director Donatella Bernardi, the series’ ambition is to replace the traditional “degree show” catalogue with a theoretical publication showing the path followed by the students-turned-artists over the course of the year, and to explore how an educational institution based in Zurich can locate itself within the global (art) world.

    320 pages, jrp|Ringier, 2018
    ISBN 978-3-03764-525-3

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