Release of 11.10.2018

Class of Interpretation

Thyssen-Bornemisza Art Contemporary (TBA21) launches study course in curatorial studies in cooperation with the Academy of Fine Arts in Prague (AVU)
ANON

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Prague, Czech Republic—October 24, 2018

Thyssen-Bornemisza Art Contemporary (TBA21) in cooperation with the Academy of Fine Art in Prague (AVU) launches Class of Interpretation (COI), a five-year program designed for Masters and PhD students dedicated to expanding the perspective of intellectual production in curatorial studies. With an emphasis on critical thinking, new scholarship, and museological practices, COI creates a new educational format to further deep exploration of crucial themes in contemporary art, including ecology, philosophy, and politics, with international and local experts. Select events are open to the public, starting with the inaugural lecture by the art collective ANON on October 24 at 7 p.m.

A core group of 25 students will embark on a rigorous curriculum, encompassing bi-weekly classroom meetings supplemented by more than a dozen semi-public and public events a year and the development of fieldwork, exhibitions, publications, and an online database. Specialized workshops will be semi-public, open to the program’s core of 25 students and 25 additional participants. A series of public lectures will share access to these learnings with the broader community.

The first guest lecturer is the New York–based collective ANON, who will present the first COI performative lecture at AVU on Wednesday, October 24, at 7 p.m., and lead separate intensive workshops with students. ANON is a group of Left Accelerationists working in art, academia, programming, and design. Three members of ANON—Alexandra Mason and Joseph Giacona in person with Karim Samuels joining via Skype—will analyze and interpret their #AltWoke Manifesto, which spotlights the fallacies of the “woke” generation and seeks to define new productive perspectives. Other guest lecturers and artists this fall will include Chus Martínez, art historian, philosopher, and the director of the Art Institute at the FHNW Academy of Art and Design, Basel, Switzerland with artist and novelist Ingo Niermann; and anthropologist and Africanist Anjalika Sagar and linguist Kodwo Eshun, both members of artist collective The Otolith Group. Highlights next spring include architect Keller Easterling and sociologist Benjamin H. Bratton.

The program is led by TBA21 curator Boris Ondreička and theoretician and curator Václav Janoščík, who has taught at AVU as well as the Film and TV School and Academy of Architecture and Design. Ondreička and Janoščík say, “Our intent is nothing less than to put Prague on the map of contemporary thought. The result of the entire five-year program should be a representative look at the issue of interpretation, within the scope of art and of social problems.”

“The Academy of Fine Art in Prague challenges the boundaries of traditional studio and theoretical studies programs. It has been a pleasure to collaborate with TBA21 on the organization and implementation of the Class of Interpretation, which brings to Prague an exciting new framework for analysis and curatorial study,” said AVU rector Tomáš Vaněk.
 
The nonprofit initiated the project’s development, bringing its expertise in content, knowledge, and art production to the academic sphere. TBA21 will foster connections across its international network of collaborators and develop links with access to its archives, books, and materials documenting the creation of works of art.
 
Fall 2018 Schedule 

Inaugural Public Lecture October 24, 2018 and Semi-Public Seminar October 25, 2018
Artist collective ANON will present new perspectives deriving from their #Altwoke Manifesto. 
 
Semi-Public Seminar November 8, 2018
Boris Ondreička and Václav Janoščík
COI Project Curators Boris Ondreička and Václav Janoščík will disentangle contemporary social movements about love, exploring the definitions of “affective” and “emo-romantic” in contemporary art.
 
Semi-Public Seminar November 21, 2018 and Public Lecture November 22, 2018
Chus Martínez and Ingo Niermann
Curator Chus Martínez and author Ingo Niermann will discuss the joys and complications of being an artistic couple, from collaboration to conflicts of interest.
 
Semi-Public Seminar November 28, 2018 and Public Lecture November 29, 2018
Anjalika Sagar and Kodwo Eshun 
Otolith Group artists Anjalika Sagar and Kodwo Eshun will investigate sonic and technological distribution of emancipatory discourse.
 
Semi-Public Seminar December 13, 2018
Boris Ondreička and Václav Janoščík
COI curators will open and discuss the topic of Non-European ontologies.
 
COI Program Curators

Boris Ondreička 
Boris Ondreička is an artist, author, and curator, who has worked as a curator at TBA21 since 2012 and is the former director of the art initiative tranzit.sk. Select projects he co-curated at TBA21 include “Rare Earth”, “Supper Club”, “Morning Line”, Olafur Eliasson “Green light—An artistic fworkshop “, and “Ephemeropteræ”. He also co-curated “Manifesta 8” at Murcia in Cartagena, Spain; “Being The Future” at Palast der Republik in Berlin; “Auditorium, Stage”, Backstage, at Frankfurter Kunstverein in Frankfurt, Germany; “The Question of Will”, at Open Society Foundation in Bratislava, Slovakia; and “Empire of the Senseless” at Meetfactory in Prague. Ondreička also co-founded The Society of Július Koller. 
 
Václav Janoščík 
Václav Janoščík is a pedagogue, theorist, and curator currently teaching at the Academy of fine Arts, Film and TV School, and Academy of Arts, Architecture and Design in Prague. He is the editor of several volumes on problems of contemporary thinking ranging from new materialism, speculative realism, accelerationism, future studies, and media theory (Object, 2015; Reinventing Horizons, 2016; Mind in Terrain, 2018). His newest project is a book entitled Nonsleeping (2018).
 
Organizing institutions

Founded in 2002 by Francesca von Habsburg in Vienna, Thyssen-Bornemisza Art Contemporary (TBA21) represents the fourth generation of the Thyssen family’s commitment to the arts. As a foundation of contemporary art and dedicated to the worldview changing realization that can be called the Anthropocene, TBA21 is foremost a space within which very different kinds of knowledge and practices can meet.
TBA21 collection is the result of the foundation’s ongoing commitment to commissioning and developing art projects that defy traditional categorization, including large scale installations, sound compositions, performance, and contemporary architecture. It promotes practices that are informed by social and environmental concerns, transdisciplinary forms of knowledge that forge new, productive relations between artistic research and the creative work of the sciences and humanities, and investigations of the pressing issues of contemporary life. After more than 16 years of collecting, commissioning projects, and engaged exhibition practice, TBA21 has established a highly respected collection of more than 700 contemporary artworks by nearly 200 artists from around the globe. Traversing different geographies and contexts from Central and Eastern Europe, Southeast Asia and the Indian Subcontinent, Oceania to Latin America, TBA21 foregrounds artists practices that change the terms of engagement between art and the societies it inhabits.
 
The Academy of Fine Arts (AVU) in Prague is the oldest public art school in Bohemia. As a university dedicated to the fine arts, AVU engages in artistic, scientific, and research initiatives and promotes lifelong learning. AVU is an important cultural institute in Prague that is committed to helping shape and develop culture and society.
 
For more information on COI:
Follow COI on Facebook or @classofinterpretation on Instagram
 
Media contacts
Nikola Bukajová, TBA21, coi-prague@tba21.org, +420 720 435 754 
Blanka Čermáková, AVU, blanka.cermakova@avu.cz, +420 739 517 758
 
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Class of Interpretation | Thyssen-Bornemisza Art Contemporary and the Academy of Fine Arts in Prague
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