Friederike Meese, 2023

*1982 in Kaufbeuren (DE), lives in Berlin (DE)

What Matters

Work Presentation 2022

“What Matters” was the question andtatement of 2022 presentation of works by the JUNGE AKADEMIE, the interdisciplinary and international artist-in-residence programme of the Akademie der Künste. In an exhibition and a multifaceted programme including screenings, concerts and readings, 29 fellows from all of the Akademie’s art sections presented sound and video installations, photographs, sculptures, paintings and performances they developed during their studio residencies in the Hansaviertel in Berlin and at Villa Serpentara in Olevano, Italy.

“What Matters” is not to be understood as the title of a thematic exhibition but rather indicates the diversity of questions, perspectives and realities that are interlaced in an artist residency, while emphasising their urgency. The exhibition focused on the artists’ individual approaches that encompass a broad spectrum of themes: from questions about the transformation of societies and their expression in relation to the urban space and landscape, to interrelations between the individual and social systems such as state, religion and the economy, to reflections on body images and conceptions of history, personal archives and the intertwining of nature, technology and culture.

What matters is artistic testimony, poetic resistance and the imagining of sustainable futures in the face of global tipping points – whether climatic or political in nature. Two years into the pandemic and the associated restrictions, “What Matters” was the most comprehensive presentation of works to date by the JUNGE AKADEMIE.

To quote one of the fellows: “What matters? Make them see…”

Play the Pedestrian or Dinosaur Seeks Parmesan

Room installation

During her Villa Serpentara residency in Olevano, Meese took on the role of a pedestrian, making her way around an Italian mountain town. While feeling like a dinosaur among the invariably wheeled fellow creatures, she undertook performative interventions in the urban space. Inspired by Lucius Burckhardt and the Paris Situationists of the 1960s, she pleads for a new critical perception of the town in dadaistic, playful interactions. In this current work, visitors are invited to play pedestrians themselves and to walk along the winding streets of Olevano as if on a playing field. The cards collected in the process lead to detours, away from the efficient start-destination direction – on the map as in the real urban space. How do we perceive our own role in the urban space? By what do we allow ourselves to be guided? What new twists and turns arise in our mind?