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Städelschule, Frankfurt meets Missing Identity, Prishtina

Nikola Dietrich (Portikus, Frankfurt/Main) and Dirk Fleischmann (Städelschule, Frankfurt/Main) have worked with the “Missing Identity” team and “relations” to formulate an exchange program for young artists of both locations. The program will be phased in over a year. Picking up on the themes adressed in “Missing Identity,” which has been running for the last two years in the framework of “relations” in Kosovo, the program asks to what extent artistic production can reflect the mechanisms employed to form identity, a recurring element of the co-operation up until now. Students from the alternative art academy of Missing Identity, the Contemporary Art Institute EXIT in Prishtina, and the Städelschule are to come together to develop individual art projects, which will be then realized in Prishtina and Frankfurt. Joint theory workshops will accompany these activities.

The ACADEMY REMIX project is one of the few initiatives that enables an exchange between artists from Kosovo and Germany. The project is especially important for the Städelschule, as it creates an extension of the art academy by generating a forum for the interaction of young artists and the cooperation between different cultures in a very intensive way. Providing motivation and support for communication and collaborative, artistic work - in this sense, the academy expands into a forum for cultural exchange and discourse.

The difficulty in understanding - both the historical and current - social and political situation in Kosovo forms the basis for the interaction between the students in this exchange. The plethora of information about the current situation in Kosovo will be reduced through these collaborative events, although the notion about how the questions and themes that arise from the specific situation in Kosovo pose themselves in a bilateral context will also be brought up for discussion. Dealing with Kosovo is at the same time occasion for the fundamental discussion around the limitations and potentials of artistic actions in relation to social issues.

This year, two working meetings took place in Frankfurt/Main (February 2005) and in Prishtina (April 2005). Workshops and lectures from internationally renowned artists and curators are offered not only at the academies but within the framework of these collaborative working meetings. The project was accompanied with theory seminars from the artist and art-critic, Ronald Jones. Jones is professor at the Konstfack Art Academy in Stockholm and has often been invited in the past to guest workshops and seminars at the Städelschule. For the second working meeting in Prishtina, presentations were held by the Albanian curator, Edi Muka, the Kosovo architect, Veton Orona, and the Peja-based artist, Sokol Beqiri.

In the three-step program, the 25 students present the development of the individual projects to the central theme of the program: within the framework of the StadtRaum project, Frankfurt/Main (Summer 2005) the sketches and the first interim report were presented. The next project presentation took place in Prishtina between September 23 - 27, 2005. The final presentation of the project will be on view in Portikus, Frankfurt/Main between November 18 - 23, 2005.

The progress of the project is documented on a website ( The website brings together the exchange of ideas and collaborative efforts of the participants outside of the physical meetings as well as functioning as an archive of the project's activities and research.