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15 September 2014 - 24 August 2015
playing by heart
»The joys and the hopes, griefs and anxieties of the men of this age, especially those who are poor or in any way afflicted, these are the joys and hopes, griefs and anxieties of the followers of Christ. Indeed, nothing genuinely human fails to raise an echo in their hearts.« Thus begins the Second Vatican Council’s concluding document Gaudium et Spes "on the Church in the modern world", published 50 years ago in 1965, which is so important for the Catholic Church even today. In a time of numerous political crises and militarily resolved conflicts associated increasingly with religious intolerance and an heretofore unseen number of refugees, this message seems more relevant than ever. | We are taking this anniversary as an opportunity to deal with "joy and hope", or respectively, with how these are made visible in art and culture. Art is playing with contents and shaping it into form. It transforms the materials available to it – language, substance, color, sound, movement – according to its own, often intuitive laws. Art allows itself the unthinkable, since »Man is a god when he dreams and a beggar when he thinks« (Hölderlin). We search for modern images of joy in reaction to a, for the most part, one-sided updating of contents on Christian beliefs with its great themes of the Passion, as it occurs in art from Classical Modernism up to today. We search for counter images of pain: new starts and departures, presence, happiness, creativity, creation, play, utopia, vitality, but also cheerfulness, humor, and wit are some of the key-words that guide us.
| From a theological standpoint, joy is a possible way of experiencing God in freedom, finding its central expression in the shared celebration of the Eucharist. In a way that addresses all of our senses, this exhibition wishes to give fitting expression to the joy derived from the present and the hope for the future that is rooted in Christian faith. With this we are launching a nation-wide exhibition project for the German Bishops’ Conference, and in doing so, Kolumba is more than ever a place of poetic interim spaces, of playfully creative dialogue, and reflective cheerfulness. We probe the value of aesthetic education, of non purpose-driven play, and the recognition of artistic work in a society largely dominated by economics and efficiency. | The title playing by heart has to do with the feeling of happiness that a thorough knowledge of a work can produce. At the same time, it is a metaphor for a holistic, creative, and caring relationship to the world, to one’s self, and to one’s neighbor. »Man only plays when in the full meaning of the word he is a man, and he is only completely a man when he plays.« (Schiller). Last but not least, »playing by heart« is an exhibition about love.
The exhibition is dedicated to the artist Michael Buthe (1944–1994).
Parallel to this exhibition, in cooperation with the Department of Philospy at the University of Cologne we are organizing a Hauptseminar (Advanced Seminar) as well as a weekly Philosophical Discussion (both of these offers only take place during the semester). For more detailed information, please visit our Menu: Current Events.
The works on display were created between the 5th and the 21st century. Among these are major works of medieval sculpture and goldsmith art, books of hours, (Renate König Collection), South American devotional paintings, religious folk art (Rodert Donation), objects from the Collection of Works and Forms (Schriefers Donation), artists' Books (Missmahl Donation), and children's books (Leipziger Buchkinder/ Book Kids in Leipzig). Unless otherwise specified, all works on display are Kolumba property. Most of these works are being shown for the very first time.
Artists on display: Birgit Antoni, Monika Bartholomé, Georg Baumgarten, Stefan Baumkötter, Herbert Bayer, Victoria Bell, Joseph Beuys, Peter Bömmels, Marcel Broodthaers, Heiner Binding, Heinz Breloh, Johannes Brus, Hans Karl Burgeff, Michael Buthe, Heinrich Campendonk, G.A. Cavellini, Franz-Heinrich Commans, Hildegard Domizlaff, Lyonel Feininger, Peter Fischli & David Weiss, Robert Filliou, Herbert Falken, Bill Fontana, Martin Frommelt, Jeremias Geisselbrunn, Carsten Höller, Roni Horn, Alfonso Hüppi, Bethan Huws, Leiko Ikemura, Franz Ittenbach, Hans Josephsohn, Esther Kläs, Paul Klee, Robert Klümpen, Jannis Kounellis, Heinrich Küpper, Leipziger Buchkinder, Bernhard Leitner, Stefan Lochner, Bärbel Messmann, Carl Müller, Hartmut Neumann, Chris Newman, Jürgen Paatz, Jochem Pechau, Thomas Rentmeister, Gerhard Rühm, Barbara Schachtner, Oskar Schlemmer, Werner Schriefers, Fritz Schwegler, Kurt Schwitters, Norbert Schwontkowski, Franz-Wilhelm Seiwert, Richard Serra, Daniel Spoerri, Paul Thek, Peter Tollens, Manos Tsangaris, Richard Tuttle, Andor Weininger, Stefan Wewerka, Josef Wolf, Annamaria Zanella.
© VG-Bildkunst, Bonn: Birgit Antoni, Monika Bartholomé, Herbert Bayer, Joseph Beuys, Peter Bömmels, Marcel Broodthaers, Heiner Binding, Johannes Brus, Michael Buthe, Heinrich Campendonk, Lyonel Feininger, Carsten Höller, Alfonso Hüppi, Bethan Huws, Leiko Ikemura, Robert Klümpen, Jannis Kounellis, Bärbel Messmann, Hartmut Neumann, Thomas Rentmeister, Oskar Schlemmer, Fritz Schwegler, Kurt Schwitters, Richard Serra, Daniel Spoerri, Manos Tsangaris, Richard Tuttle, Andor Weininger, Stefan Wewerka, Josef Wolf