Exhibition from 30 April – 19 June 2016 at WELTKUNSTZIMMER / Opening, Friday 29th April 2016, 7 pm


Céline Berger: Rare Birds in these Lands, 2013 video, HD, black/white, stereo, 10:50 min (videostill), courtesy: the artist

Johannes Bendzulla: Art Business As Usual, 2015, inkjetprints on alu-dibond, triptych, 95 x 190 x 0,4 cm (left part), courtesy: Johannes Bendzulla / Natalia Hug / Brennan & Griffin

Christian von Borries: Iphone China, 2014, video, ca. 70 min (videostill), courtesy: the artist

Christin Lahr: WORK_OUT, work in progress, 2016, installation, courtesy: the artist

Katja Stuke: Arbeitsstätten, 2016 (Detail / Second Life), pigment print framed, multipiece photo montage, 213 x 101 cm, courtesy: the artist

Rupert Maier and Georg Winter: „Brigade Partisan Heslach“ at work, Künstlerhaus Stuttgart (in front of colour samples), early 1990s, courtesy: the artist

Alexander Roob: German Exchange, 2000, pencil on paper, ca. 15 x 22 cm, courtesy: the artist, Gallery Ursula Walbröl

Sven Johne: Some Engels, 2013, video, 27:13 min (videostill), courtesy: KLEMM'S, Berlin and Sven Johne / VG Bild, Bonn

Florian Kuhlmann: The new project, 2013, digitale collage, computer print, Maße variabel, courtesy: the artist


(The Value of Art as Value of Work)

30 April – 19 June 2016


with ACAD&C, Johannes Bendzulla, Céline Berger, Christian von Borries, Robert Brambora, Sven Johne, Florian Kuhlmann, Christin Lahr, Mutter / Genth, M+M, Alexander Roob, Robert Schlicht, Romana Schmalisch, Andreas Siekmann, Katja Stuke, Mathilde ter Heijne, Georg Winter

Curated by Sabine Maria Schmidt


Over the last twenty years, tectonic shifts in the political, economic, and technological systems have occurred at a dizzying pace, acting increasingly on the individual organization of areas of life and work which have become precarious.

Art is valuable. Yet, art is not a luxury as it is often claimed, but an elemental creative means of expression and a basic human need. As in almost all areas of life, financial economic standards have created an authority to define art, progressively superimposing the questioning of its aesthetic, cultural, social, and creative "added value". The publicly funded promotion of culture is endangered, and after decades of underfunding, historically grown cultural institutions are threatened by closure with increased regularity. On the other hand, a globalized art market reflects once again a privatized financial accumulation. The discussion about the "value of art", its promotion, preservation, and collection has therefore clearly gained momentum in recent years.

Who and what determines the value of art? Is autonomous art actually a resource that can determine its own value, without any dependence to the underlying work and conditions of production? Here as well, artistic work is under consideration.

For what "work" is, not only matters to those who have none, who are afraid of losing their work, or who practise permanent overexploitation. New, non-hierarchical and self-determined models of work preclude classical gainful employment, but often at the cost of de-limitation of work and life, and a demand for flexibility, mobility, availability, and permanent self-optimization. Temporary contract conditions, low wages, the wasting away of labour rights advocacy also characterize the framing portfolio of many in the "working force". The modern "form of existence of the artist" as a freelance creative, risk-taking and independent contractor, who works without commission and produces goods without buyers, is used as a cross-genre role model for current labour economics and management theories.

Initiative and self-organization are required. But what used to be considered as an alternative life plan, has become for many an existential necessity. From "social outcasts" to "accomplices of neoliberal capitalism"? In an attempt to take the social and value-added aspects of the production and reception of artistic work into view and to question their assigned role models, many artists and artist collectives have developed different approaches since the 1990s. Here, a constitutive part of their work is formed not least by publication and distribution strategies.

The exhibition questions in an exemplary way how artistic work or its appreciation is currently pictured. How do ideas, concepts, and ideologies of creativity, self-efficiency, performance, and value in business and art permeate each other? How is the "value of art" and the "value of work" of artists defined, analysed, or questioned? Which role models, empowerment and refusal strategies do artists discuss? Which alternative economies, supply chains, and distribution forms are being observed or becoming necessary?


For more information about the exhibition theme and about the participating artists see:





Exhibition Programme



29 April 2016, 7 pm

Performance for the opening: BRIGADE PARTISAN HESLACH
Rupert Maier, Georg Winter

Paint work! Finally the breakthrough?
The Brigade Partisan Heslach was founded by Rupert Maier and Georg Winter in 1984 out of a remodeling action at the Institute for Foreign Cultural Relations (IFA) in Stuttgart. The
brigade with changing brigadists continuously worked for more than 20 years to secure the livelihoods of those involved and their families. The painting, construction, and renovation were always related to the work as performance and can be, despite the clear results and sometimes less spectacular results, woodchip white, called artistic work. Besides 'Underlining' Art Foundation Baden Württemberg 1994, the 'work as work' FKN Nürtingen or 'Monochrome-minimal-constructive' Budapest, the Brigade Partisan Heslach filled numerous orders, which brought about spatial changes while simultaneously examining forms of wagedependent work.
Texts by Hannah Arendt, Karl Marx and Danijl Charms supported the spatial performances.
The brigade was named after the district "Heslach" in Stuttgart, where the first orders were accrued. The term "Brigade Partisan" came from the Jewish workers' and resistance
The use of the brigade over the many years was often dusty and weary, but helped to create wiggle room for art between ceiling, wall and floor.

Guided tours

Guided tour by the curator: Sunday, 1 May, 3 pm (and upon request)
Guided tours: Sundays, at 3 pm
22 May, 12 June (with Viktoria Hellfeier)
29 May, 19 June (with Martha Martens)


26 - 29 May 2016
Temporary office and performance by ACAD&C in the exhibition as well as the urban
space of Düsseldorf

ACAD&C (Agency for Contemporary Artistic Discourse & Collaboration) is a performative
agency run by an open artists collective. Founded in Kassel in 2015, it embodies both a
hybridized form of infrastructure and an artistic strategy.
The agency reflects on strategies of self-representation; negotiates relationships between
artists, experts and institutions; and embraces, alternates and sugarcoats powerful discourses on a new level. It reacts to the economic realities and imperatives of the art world. In this respect, performativity is its elementary tool.

Location: Guest studios at the WELTKUNSTZIMMER and inner-city of Düsseldorf
Office hours: Thur to Sun, 2 - 6 pm


Sunday, 29 May 2016, 2.30 - 4 pm

Workshop in cooperation with ACAD&C

Location: The workshop takes place within the exhibition
Registration recommended, 15 participants
To register mail to: martha(at)weltkunstzimmer(dot)de


Labor für Kritik und Weitsicht (Laboratory for Critique and Foresight)

Wednesday, 11 May 2016, 7 pm
Art looks better on Tumblr - Added value and loss of value of art on the internet

Short presentations by Florian Kuhlmann, Johannes Bendzulla, Ulrich Genth and Heike
Mutter, subsequent discussion moderated by Sabine Maria Schmidt

How does an artistic "business as usual" work today, which chains of distribution and
reception are accelerated by the internet? And how do economic appropriation and
exploitation strategies present themselves on the internet, when a work suddenly becomes a worldwide famous "key visual"?

Location: Guest studios at WELTKUNSTZIMMER, Ronsdorfer Str. 77a

Wednesday, 15 June 2016, 7 pm
Jacco van Uden: What Makes Art Work So Appealing?

In his presentation, Jacco will talk about his Making Art Work research project. Within this project, different ways of connecting the worlds of art and management/organization are explored. Are management and art fundamentally different practices? Or can we arrive at ‘artistically-informed management practices’? And should we? What is at stake here?
Jacco van Uden (1972) has a background in Organisation Studies (Erasmus University
Rotterdam, NL) and was as a Management Consultant for a number of years after which he
moved into the field of Futures studies. Jacco has been with The Hague University of Applied Sciences since 2012, where he is now head of the Change management research group (‘lector’). The research group (‘lectoraat’) focuses not only on the Management of Change but also on the question of how management itself can be changed. It does so by rethinking topics that normally receive little attention in mainstream management literature, such as ambiguity, space, gossip or hesitance. In addition, the research group seeks to draws from sources that at first sight have little to do with management or organization.

Location: Guest studios at WELTKUNSTZIMMER, Ronsdorfer Str. 77a
Presentation and discussion in English!


Film program accompanying the exhibition:

WELTKUNSTZIMMER in cooperation with Filmwerkstatt Düsseldorf

Location: Filmwerkstatt Düsseldorf, Birkenstr. 47 (in the courtyard), 40233 Düsseldorf

Wednesday, 25 May 2016, 7 pm
Thomas Hirschhorn - Gramsci Monument, 2015,

a film by Angelo A. Lüdin
94 min, English with German subtitles

"Energy against quality?
Subsequent discussion with the director Angelo A. Lüdin, Markus Ambach and Jan Wagner, moderated by Sabine Maria Schmidt

About the film:
Thomas Hirschhorn, a Swiss artist of international standing, consistently dares to touch on
socio-political sore points with his participatory work. In 2013, Hirschhorn started the
construction of the "Gramsci Monument" at Forest Houses, a social housing estate in the
South Bronx. Far away from the New York cultural scene the valient artist wants to
implement the project together with unqualified employees from the neighborhood. Mutual provocations and problems are inevitable, because Hirschhorn's absolute dedication to art is confronted with the reality of the residents shaped by poverty and unemployment. The road to the monument - so beautifully conceived in his Paris studio - is proving more difficult than expected! The film follows and documents the entire - visible - lifespan of an exciting endeavour, from its creation to its final, creativly destructive dismantling.

Wednesday, 22 June 2016, 7 pm
Céline Berger: Ballade (working title), 2015/2016
Video: HD, Stereo (German), 20 min.

„Coaching-strategies and art“
Subsequent discussion with Céline Berger, Emmanuel Mir, Jan Wagner and Sabine Maria

About the film:
"Ballade" explores the language universe of business coaching, the methods of the coaches, the stories and desires of their clients. A wide, barren steppe. Three people hike and narrate.
Andreas, the manager, has terminated his personnel manager because he found him
unreliable; the project manager Barbara is afraid of the forthcoming presentation of her
project to management; Christian, the personnel manager, wants to free himself from the
constraints of his professional life and realign. The script text of "Ballad" is based on the
audio documentation of 50 coaching sessions at three German coaching training centers.




Supported by




About the exhibition space:

The exhibition takes place on the site of the former baking factory built in 1910 by the consumer cooperative "Allgemeiner Consumverein freies Rheinland" (General Consumercooperative free Rhineland). The founding of “Consumvereine” began with consumers and social reformers, who wanted to improve the cost of living in the cities, which experienced an explosive growth through industrialization, by supplying inexpensive high quality goods. In the 1970s the baking factory was shut down and about to be demolished, which could be prevented due to the private-initiative commitment by Hans Peter Zimmer. In the late 1980s, the place which was called CON-SUM by then, became a popular alternative quarter for the art scene in Düsseldorf. The industrial premises were henceforth used, among other things, as studios and rehearsal spaces. At the turn of 2012, the Hans Peter Zimmer Stiftung launched a new, interdisciplinary art centre under the name of WELTKUNSTZIMMER.