Contemporary Art in Wittenberg, Berlin and Kassel

Central Exhibition: Wittenberg, Old Prison
Extension of the term to November 1st, 2017

Freedom behind bars: Seventy artists from around the world have transformed the Old Prison in Wittenberg into a temporary museum. The exhibition is augmented by special presentations in two churches in Berlin (St. Matthäus-Kirche) and Kassel (Karlskirche).

Wittenberg, Old Prison
Berliner Str. / Ecke Dessauer Str., D-06886 Lutherstadt Wittenberg
May 19 – November 1st, 2017, Mon-Sun 10am-7pm

Eija-Liisa Ahtila – Ai Weiwei – Art & Language – Stephan Balkenhol – Christian Boltanski – Monica Bonvicini – Maurizio Cattelan – Mat Collishaw – Olafur Eliasson – Ayse Erkmen – Elger Esser – Isa Genzken – Adrian Ghenie – Gilbert & George – Dorothee Golz – Manuel Graf – Assaf Gruber – Shilpa Gupta – Axel Heil + Roberto Ohrt – Diango Hérnandez – Jörg Herold – Thomas Huber – Richard Jackson – Christian Jankowski – Jia – Ilya und Emilia Kabakov – Yury Kharchenko – Thomas Kilpper & Massimo Ricciardo – Jürgen Klauke – Alexander Kluge – Korpys/Löffler – Eva Kot’átková – Olya Kroytor – Mischa Kuball – Csilla Kudor – Ulrike Kuschel – Andrey Kuzkin – Thomas Locher – Markus Lüpertz – Antje Majewski – Jonathan Meese – Olaf Metzel – Miao Xiaochun – Marzia Migliora – Achim Mohné – Christian Philipp Müller – Eko Nugroho – Pjotr Pawlenski – Ivan Plusch – Johanna Reich – Sebastian Riemer – Robotlab – Julian Rosefeldt – Luise Schröder – Andreas Slominski – Song Dong – Juergen Staack – Sun Xun – Jan Svenungsson – Tal R – Pascale Tayou – Günther Uecker – Paloma Varga Weisz – Cornelius Völker – Erwin Wurm – Xu Bing – Zhang Huan – Zhang Peili

The artists have been invited to address the inspiring ideas of the Reformation, which have not lost their currency today. The views of artists on subjects such as attitude, desire for change and responsibility play a central role. The exhibition will include works by i.a. Eija-Liisa Ahtila, Ólafur Elíasson, Ayşe Erkmen, Isa Genzken, Pascale Marthine Tayou, Günther Uecker, Ai Weiwei, Erwin Wurm, and Zhang Peili. Additional exhibition sites are the St. Matthäus Kirche in Berlin and the Karlskirche in Kassel, where art takes up residence in church buildings.

International modern art meets the pugnacious visionary Martin Luther: This is the starting point of the exhibition Luther and the Avantgarde. However, the focus lies not on the great reformer as an historical figure, but as a fountain of ideas and a socio-cultural avantgardist of his time. He challenged the existing power structures, highlighted injustices and unleashed a process of reforms, which reverberated across all areas of society. Luther changed the world. Who are the great initiators, the admonishers, the innovators today? Where does art stand now? Are artists the social avantgarde of our time?

Artists from across five continents set out to examine the fascination surrounding Luther, and, like the great reformer before them, pre-occupy themselves intensively with the pressing social issues of our day. They articulate their attitudes to freedom and its adversaries, demagogy and resistance, responsibility and tolerance against the backdrop of profound social conflicts and a multishifting global media landscape.

On show are paintings, sculptures, installations, murals, photographs, posters, films, video and sound works and performances. In addition, Bazon Brock is extending an open invitation to attend his Visitor’s School in Wittenberg for a period of 40 days.

Luther and the Avantgarde is a cooperation between the Stiftung für Kunst und Kultur (Foundation for Art and Culture, Bonn) and the Reformationsjubiläum 2017 and part of the World Reformation Exhibition (