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Cross-Cultural Challenges

The lecture series »Cross-Cultural Challenges« is part of the program Artistic and Cultural Orientation for asylum seekers and refugees who are interested in artistic and/or design issues. The guest lectures, delivered by artists, theoreticians and curators who represent a non-European perspective, aim at all University members and intend to promote discourse on cultural transfer and diverse »schools of seeing«.

14 November 2018
Khaled Bakareh: The Practice of Necessity
Khaled Barakeh ist ein in Berlin lebender syrischer Künstler und Kulturaktivist. Er nähert sich seiner kreativen Praxis als Werkzeug des sozialen Wandels mit Fokus auf Themen, die sich auf Machtstrukturen im Kontext von Identität, Kultur und Geschichte beziehen. Aus seiner künstlerischen Arbeit heraus, entwickelte sich eine Praxis, die er als "Practices of Necessity" beschreibt. Er versteht sie als Antwort auf Fragen und Bedürfnisse seiner Umgebung. In seinem Vortrag stellt Barakeh zwei aktuelle Projekte vor: SYRIA Cultural Index – eine Online Plattform zur Vernetzung syrischer Kreativer und die Syrian Biennale – die erste mobile Biennale entlang der Stationen der sogenannten "Flüchtlingsroute" Station macht.

6 June 2018
Guest Lecture: Shirana Shahbazi
Shirana Shahbazi, geboren 1974 in Teheran, studierte Fotografie in Dortmund und Zürich. Ihre Werke waren in zahlreichen Gruppen- und Einzelausstellungen zu sehen, u.a. in der Kunsthalle Bern, im Fotomuseum Winterthur, im New Museum, New York und im Museum Boijmans van Beuningen, Rotterdam, und wurden mehrfach ausgezeichnet. Die Künstlerin lebt und arbeitet in der Schweiz.

9 May 2018
Ayzit Bostan: Internet
Die Künstlerin und Modedesignerin Ayzit Bostan machte sich 1997 in München mit ihrem eigenen Modelabel selbständig. Sie arbeitet häufig an der Schnittstelle zwischen Mode und Kunst, u.a. auch als Kostümbildnerin für Theater und Film, und wurde bereits mehrfach ausgezeichnet. Ayzit Bostan lehrt als Professorin an der Kunsthochschule Kassel.

8 November 2017
Guest Lecture: Anna Boghiguian
Künstlerin und Documenta 13-Teilnehmerin
Anna Boghiguian was born in 1946, an Armenian in Cairo. She never adopted the city as her only home, continuing to have a conflicting relationship with the city today. Living a nomadic life, the artist has constantly moved from city to city across the globe. Immersing herself in the sights and sounds of the city, as well as the literature, poetry and politics of its people, the artist nonetheless remained distant, an outsider in a busy metropolis.

25 October 2017
Ahlam Shibli: Between Trauma and a Negotiated Home
Künstlerin und Documenta 14-Teilnehmerin
Ahlam Shibli, born in 1970 in Palestine, lives and works in Palestine. Her photographic work addresses the contradictory implications of the notion of home through a documentary aesthetics. It deals with the loss of home and the fight against that loss, but also with restrictions and limitations that the idea of home imposes on individuals and communities marked by repressive identity politics.

14 June 2017
Guest Lecture: Hiwa K, Berlin
Irakisch-deutscher Installationskünstler, aktueller Documenta 14-Teilnehmer und Einzelausstellung in den Kunstwerken Berlin. »In seiner Heimat galt Hiwa K [...] als realistischer Maler – und daran hat sich nichts geändert, auch wenn er das Malen mittlerweile aufgegeben hat. Er ist ein Sozialrealist, dem es nicht um die präzise Darstellung einer potenziellen Wirklichkeit geht, sondern um die Neuerfindung und Transformation der vorgefundenen Realität.« (Adam Szymczyk)

17 May 2017
Jasmina Metwaly + Philip Rizk, Cairo/Egypt
Jasmina Metwaly and Philip Rizk are founding members of Mosireen media collective, which was formed during the 2011 revolution in Egypt in order to establish a platform for citizen journalism and an archive of the revolution.

19 April 2017
Natascha Sadr Haghighian: Fuel to the Fire
Mit ihrer recherche-basierten Praxis versucht Natascha Sadr Haghighian, Machtverhältnisse innerhalb der Kunst und durch künstlerische Mittel erfahrbar und veränderbar zu machen. Seit ihrer Arbeit Pfad, die sie für die documenta 13 entwickelte, beschäftigt sie sich auch mit Übersetzungsproblemen, vor allem zwischen ziviler und militärischer Definition von Lebensräumen. Die Arbeit Fuel to the Fire ist eine umfassende Installation mit begleitenden Workshops und Screenings, die in Zusammenarbeit mit den Communities in den Vororten des Stockholmer Nordens entstanden.

11 January 2017
Ghassan Salhab: Distraught Bodies
»Characters in film live in a sort of solitude, either poetic or prophetic, within the human community: each lives a catastrophic episode of the destiny of mankind as his own historical curse.«
Film presentation: Ghassan Salhab »1958« (2009, 66 Min.)

14 December 2016
Alya Sebti: In between – on exhibition making as experience of in between
Alya Sebti has been director of ifa-Galerie Berlin since April 2016, she curated several exhibitions in Europe and North Africa and was the artistic director for the 5th edition of the Marrakech Biennale in 2014.

16 November 2016
Guest Lecture: Rayyane Tabet
Im Rahmen der ACO-Ringvorlesung »Cross-Cultural Challenges« spricht der libanesische Künstler über seine Arbeit.

12 October 2016
Guest Lecture: Dr. Bonaventure Soh Bejeng Ndikung
Der Direktor von SAVVY Contemporary, Berlin, und Curator at Large documenta 14 spricht zum Auftakt der Ringvorlesung »Cross-Cultural Challenges« im Rahmen der HFBK-Semestereröffnung.


23 Fragen des Institutional Questionaire, grafisch umgesetzt von Ran Altamirano auf den Türgläsern der HFBK Hamburg zur Jahresausstellung 2021; photo: Charlotte Spiegelfeld


Who speaks? Who paints which motif? Who is shown, who is not? Questions of identity politics play an important role in art and thus also at the HFBK Hamburg. In the current issue, the university's own Lerchenfeld magazine highlights university structures as well as student initiatives that deal with diversity and identity.

Grafik: Tim Ballaschke

Start of semester

After three semesters of hybrid teaching under pandemic conditions, we are finally about to start another semester of presence. We welcome all new students and teachers at the HFBK Hamburg and cordially invite you to the opening of the academic year 2020/21, which this year will be accompanied by a guest lecture by ruangrupa.

Graphic design: Sam Kim, picture in the background: Sofia Mascate, photo: Marie-Theres Böhmker

Graduate Show 2021: All Good Things Come to an End

From September 24 to 26, the more than 150 Bachelor's and Master's graduates of the class of 2020/21 will present their final projects as part of the Graduate Show at the HFBK Hamburg. We would like to thank all visitors and participants.

photo: Klaus Frahm

Summer Break

The HFBK Hamburg is in the lecture-free period, many students and teachers are on summer vacation, art institutions have summer break. This is a good opportunity to read and see a variety of things:

ASA Open Studio 2019, Karolinenstraße 2a, Haus 5; photo: Matthew Muir

Live und in Farbe: die ASA Open Studios im Juni 2021

Since 2010, the HFBK has organised the international exchange programme Art School Alliance. It enables HFBK students to spend a semester abroad at renowned partner universities and, vice versa, invites international art students to the HFBK. At the end of their stay in Hamburg, the students exhibit their work in the Open Studios in Karolinenstraße, which are now open again to the art-interested public.

Studiengruppe Prof. Dr. Anja Steidinger, Was animiert uns?, 2021, Mediathek der HFBK Hamburg, Filmstill

Unlearning: Wartenau Assemblies

The art education professors Nora Sternfeld and Anja Steidinger initiated the format "Wartenau Assemblies". It oscillates between art, education, research and activism. Complementing this open space for action, there is now a dedicated website that accompanies the discourses, conversations and events.

Ausstellungsansicht "Schule der Folgenlosigkeit. Übungen für ein anderes Leben" im Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe Hamburg; photo: Maximilian Schwarzmann

School of No Consequences

Everyone is talking about consequences: The consequences of climate change, the Corona pandemic or digitalization. Friedrich von Borries (professor of design theory), on the other hand, is dedicated to consequence-free design. In “School of No Consequences. Exercises for a New Life” at the Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe Hamburg, he links collection objects with a "self-learning room" set up especially for the exhibition in such a way that a new perspective on "sustainability" emerges and supposedly universally valid ideas of a "proper life" are questioned.

Annual Exhibition 2021 at the HFBK

Annual exhibition a bit different: From February 12- 14, 2021 students at the Hamburg University of Fine Arts, together with their professors, had developed a variety of presentations on different communication channels. The formats ranged from streamed live performances to video programs, radio broadcasts, a telephone hotline, online conferences, and a web store for editions. In addition, isolated interventions could be discovered in the outdoor space of the HFBK and in the city.

Public Information Day 2021

How do I become an art student? How does the application process work? Can I also study to become a teacher at the HFBK? These and other questions about studying art were answered by professors, students and staff at the HFBK during the Public Information Day on February 13, 2021. In addition, there will be an appointment specifically for English-speaking prospective students on February 23 at 2 pm.

Katja Pilipenko

Semestereröffnung und Hiscox-Preisverleihung 2020

On the evening of November 4, the HFBK celebrated the opening of the academic year 2020/21 as well as the awarding of the Hiscox Art Prize in a livestream - offline with enough distance and yet together online.

Exhibition Transparencies with works by Elena Crijnen, Annika Faescke, Svenja Frank, Francis Kussatz, Anne Meerpohl, Elisa Nessler, Julia Nordholz, Florentine Pahl, Cristina Rüesch, Janka Schubert, Wiebke Schwarzhans, Rosa Thiemer, Lea van Hall. Organized by Prof. Verena Issel and Fabian Hesse; photo: Screenshot

Teaching Art Online at the HFBK

How the university brings together its artistic interdisciplinary study structure with digital formats and their possibilities.

Alltagsrealität oder Klischee?; photo: Tim Albrecht

HFBK Graduate Survey

Studying art - and what comes next? The clichéd images stand their ground: Those who have studied art either become taxi drivers, work in a bar or marry rich. But only very few people could really live from art – especially in times of global crises. The HFBK Hamburg wanted to know more about this and commissioned the Faculty of Economics and Social Sciences at the University of Hamburg to conduct a broad-based survey of its graduates from the last 15 years.

Ausstellung Social Design, Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe Hamburg, Teilansicht; photo: MKG Hamburg

How political is Social Design?

Social Design, as its own claim is often formulated, wants to address social grievances and ideally change them. Therefore, it sees itself as critical of society – and at the same time optimizes the existing. So what is the political dimension of Social Design – is it a motor for change or does it contribute to stabilizing and normalizing existing injustices?