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Welcome to the Program Area Contemporary Arts and Cultural Production

An interdisciplinary investigation of critical contemporary arts practices and cultural production is central to the Contemporary Arts and Cultural Production program area.


What does it mean "to produce culture"? What is the role of cultural production in contemporary art? And vice versa: In what way does cultural production play a significant role in contemporary art? How are publics actively involved in co-shaping cultural production processes? What artistic and cultural interventions, strategies, and tactics can be employed?
Such questions are explored in research and discussed with students and an interested public. Concepts and projects that attempt to create a connection between contemporary art as a critical cultural practice and people's everyday lives are examined based on an open understanding of culture in line with Cultural Studies' concept of culture as a negotiated process.


The program area distinguishes itself through a close interlocking of teaching, research, and mediation. In the context of the overall topic of "Arts and Publics," the available courses also include a supplementary program "Cultural Management & Cultural Production" as well as courses within the basic module "Arts: Concepts, Theories, Discourses." The results from research and teaching are presented in exhibitions, symposia, workshops, and events and are also published in our ejournal "p/art/icipate".



Based on a broad concept of culture, as first introduced by Cultural Studies, the program area bridges the dualism of high and popular culture. New and unconventional approaches to cultural phenomena are explored and reflected on in both theory and practice. This makes it possible to examine artistic forms of expression, production sites using new media, forms of representation on multiple platforms, and also interventions in social and media spaces in their contextual embedment. Such an approach encompasses various artistic genres (e.g., fine arts, theater, music, dance, art in public space) and areas of popular media production (e.g., alternative media, Web 2.0, culture jamming), sheds light on their cross-overs and breaks, and explores cross-sectional themes and cross-media cultural production.
Various projects conducted within the program area deal with contemporary arts and cultural production in their role as initiators of social processes of communication, focusing on an exploration of interdisciplinary action, spaces of negotiation, and arts and culture mediation. A transfer of current academic knowledge to students and to a broader, culturally-interested public is given high priority.

The courses, that we offer are situated at Cultural Studies' interface with contemporary art discourses and process-oriented management competence. They combine practice-orientation with current academic discourses directly related to the program area's research focus. The course program aims at new forms of participation, interdisciplinary work, and artistic-academic research, combining scientific-theoretical reflection with artistic practice and cultural-management competence.