This is a first at the Federal Environment Agency: art that you can not look at. The This this exhibit breaks new ground for the Federal Environment Agency (UBA) in Dessau to make work and lifestyles a topic of discussion. In the foreground of the unusual works of the German-British artist Tino Sehgal is communication between adults and children, the meeting of different worlds. Until the end of the year, an UBA staff member will meet with a pupil in Dessau for an entire day. Without prior arrangement they will be part of an experimental situation created by Sehgal. The pupil will spend the morning at UBA, and in the afternoon the pupil will take the lead and show what is important to him/her.
In Sehgal’s work conversation, action, and results replace material art, thereby challenging the increasing fixation on material values. His This this project brings together art, environment, and education, which addresses a core focus area of UBA. ”The objective of our work is to protect our natural means of livelihood, also for the sake of future generations, but also to promote sustainable development and environmental protection in the awareness and actions as a matter of course in everybody. In this art project which overarches generations, we are achieving this with young people from Dessau”, said Dr. Thomas Holzmann, UBA Vice President.
Three Dessau schools are participating in This this, and the Liborius Gymnasium has already made a start. The school’s headmaster, Benedikt Kraft, said, ”School is more than 45-minute classroom sessions. We are trying to bring school into the real world and the real world to school, for that is what really motivates pupils. As a Christian faith-based school environmental activism is part of our curriculum. This made cooperation with UBA seem natural.”
There are no observers in This this, only participants in unique inimitable situations and interactions. At Sehgal’s request there will be no documentation of the project— no essays will have to be written, no memos issued. The project will exist in the memories of the participants alone. This this was acquired by the Federal Art Collection and UBA become the first borrower. It will be part of the UBA Art and Environment (Kunst und Umwelt) series. 31-year-old Sehgal attracted attention at the Venice Biennale two years ago. His work has been exhibited in numerous museums and galleries.To hear and read more about This this on the Internet: http://kunstundumwelt.uba.de
Dessau, 25 May 2007