is a cooperation between Bern University of the Arts HKB and Zentrum Paul Klee.
A decade ago, the Sommerakademie im Zentrum Paul Klee introduced a landmark educational template that is now being reinvented by the reestablished Sommerakademie Paul Klee (SPK), beginning in August 2017.
The new Sommerakademie Paul Klee, under newly appointed artistic director Tirdad Zolghadr, is a fully funded program offering artists a departure from business as usual, without becoming an exhausting interruption in its own right. It caters to practitioners working at a postgraduate level, whether or not they have an official certificate saying so. Professional experience and intellectual appetite are the main requirements.
Over two summer sessions – August 2017 and August 2018 – eight fellows are granted access to the university’s outstanding infrastructure and technical support, and will proceed to collectively author a public event scheduled for April 2019. Although based on the idea of an academy, the aim is to transcend the blueprint of seminars and tutorials, and to focus on group research and cross-professional coalition building.
Back in the 2000s, there were few examples of summer retreats as proposed by the Zentrum Paul Klee. Our new program builds on this pioneering idea, while proposing a more complex blend of theory and practice, discourse and production. With its atypical timeline and exceptional infrastructure, the SPK combines collective inquiry with the perks of production-oriented residencies. The SPK is a fully funded program, covering room, travel and visa expenses. This in close partnership with international art institutions such as KW Institute for Contemporary Art Berlin.
Both in terms of a concrete curatorial theme and a fundamental working premise, the SPK seeks to account for the consequences of Contemporary Art. It traces the impact artists effectively have on the world around them, and works towards possibilities of reclaiming and steering that leverage. As such, it asks how the traction of Contemporary Art, as is, can be used to maximum effect, here and now.
The Division of Design and Fine Arts offers the three Bachelor degree programmes Art Education, Visual Communication and Fine Arts, as well as the Master degree programmes building on these Bachelors: Art Education, Communication Design and the Master in Contemporary Arts Practice residing at Y Institute.
The main focus is on independent, mentored project work in the workshop, and practical, craft-oriented and theoretical teaching accompanies this. Depending on the way students choose their courses, the various degree programmes may overlap. The intersections could be in technical, cultural-historical or theoretical fields. The different programmes also offer joint classes.
→ state-of-the-art print workshops
→ wood, plastics, metal, and textile facilities
→ high-tech sound studio
→ audiovisual media lab for film, video, and photography
→ conservation and restoration facilities
→ specialized libraries
→ contacts to conservation and restoration facilities
With around 4'000 works at its disposal the Zentrum Paul Klee has the most significant collection of paintings, aquarelles and drawings world-wide and includes archive and biographical material from all the periods of Paul Klee’s work.
A principal task of the Zentrum Paul Klee is to ensure that the artistic, pedagogic and theoretical work of Paul Klee as well as its significance within the cultural and social context of its time, is scientifically developed and communicated through different channels and media. By posing topical questions, new scientific interpretations and innovative forms of communication, the Zentrum Paul Klee aims to bring Paul Klee’s artistic potential into the present.
Three sessions on-site:→ August 5–25, 2017
→ July 30 – August 19, 2018
→ April 2019→ Application ended on February 18, 2017
→ Travel, visa expenses, room and board fully covered.
→ A collective production budget is also secured.
→ Minimal commitment required is 7–8 weeks on-site, over a total of 20 months (Summer 2017 – Spring 2019).
→ From the very outset, SPK Fellows are encouraged to assume co-curatorial responsibility, and co-devise the program.
→ Additional visits, involving workshops with Bern MFA students, are under discussion. The scope of these workshops is to be determined with the SPK Fellows.
→ Between the sessions on-site, the SPK will facilitate a continuity of the working process via various online platforms.
→ Alumni of the Sommerakademie im Zentrum Paul Klee strongly encouraged to apply.