Conditions of a Necessity originated as an assembly in September 2020, bringing together six visual arts and two theatre classes throughout Germany, under the invitation to co-create within the Kunsthalle premises. Responding to the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic and the cancellation of in-class facilities as well as graduation shows, the Assembly initiated a studio-like gathering in both digital and physical iterations for two weeks. More than a year later, Conditions of a Necessity is brought back to Staatliche Kunsthalle Baden-Baden as the culmination of evolved projects in an exhibition. 


Following the prompt of the Staatliche Kunsthalle Baden-Baden’s directors, Çağla Ilk and Misal Adnan Yıldız, an informal framework was set up through which to practice non-individualistic modes of creation, collectively determined forms of organisation, communication and collaborative decision-making. In this context, Baden-Baden serves not only as a host but echoes the singularity of the city itself as a site of recuperative retreat, a space of time out of time. The framework was enlarged subsequent to the Assembly by theorist/artist Patricia Reed and artist Egemen Demirci, who have intervened as mediators and curators throughout the twelve months of project development with artists from the various classes. These include Lensbased Class (University of the Arts Berlin), Temporary Spaces (University of the Arts Bremen), Time-based Media (University of the Arts Hamburg), the collective Dynamic Acoustic Research (DAF), Body, Theory and Poetics of the Performative (Stuttgart State Academy of Art and Design), and Expanded Cinema (Academy of Visual Arts Leipzig).


Throughout manifold exchanges, the artists and curators reflected not only on and through our dramatically altered conditions of sociality, but also on the consequences of these conditions upon institutional, educational, and configurations of collaboration unto themselves. Two notable tendencies emerged in this process yielding a stereoscopic picture of how understandings of the “commons” are manifest. In one inclination, the commons is implicitly tethered to its agricultural legacy as the delineation of a shared territory, where responsibilities are distributed amongst individual members as stakeholders. Translated into an artistic context, this instance of the common appears as a multiplicity of artistic voices/forms in a shared environment. The second tendency mobilised the commons in a mode of dissolved individual authorship, inventing techniques of commingled working towards the creation of a shared project. 


As the necessity to contend with contemporary problems is indissociable from the necessity to discover ways to practice the commons and being in-common, the experimental works underwritten by these approaches, offer a glimpse at how a younger generation of artists are negotiating such shared, complex, multidisciplinary problems through artistic means. The collection of works from performance, to video installation, to sound and sculpture presents diverse vocabularies of form, reflective of future histories for which the seeds are being sown in the present.  


The public opening of the exhibition Conditions of a Necessity will be accompanied by performances by the art students.


Participants are:

Temporary Spaces Class

Prof. Asli Serbest

HfK Bremen

Maria Arzt, Livia Brocke, Kate Chen, Farzad Golghasemi, Sanija Klavina (Sunny), Jin Liang (Lucy), Miljana Nikovic, Recep-Ali Özyilmaz, Liu Peng, Kaja Poestges, Maike Sophie Quenzer, Yilei Sheng, Hanna Stijnen, Emilia Sting, Abdulghaffar Tammaa, Elizaveta Vasileva, Frank Wang, Bonnie Wenzke, Feng Zeng


Lensbased Class

Prof. Hito Steyerl

UdK Berlin

Garden Alliance:

Arwin Ahmadpur, Teresa Hoffmann, Jeanna Kolesova, Daria Kozlova, Leyla Toprak


Bovista Mushroom Club:

Mariam Aslanishvili, Annagul Beschareti, Viktor Bone, Elisa Jule Braun, Maithu Bùi, Tetyana Gryniva, Jack Hogan, Annkathrin Kluss, Lena Kocutar, Can Kurucu, Victoria Martinez, Heiko-Thandeka Ncube, Ali Yass


Körper, Theorie und Poetik des Performativen

Prof. Discoteca Flaming Star

ABK Stuttgart

Toni Böckle, Ludgi Porto, Yara Richter, Madeleine Wegner


Expanded Cinema

Prof. Clemens von Wedemeyer

HGB Leipzig

Louis Hay, Franziska Koppmann, Jan-Luca Ott, Jonas Roßmeißl, Yara Saleh, Johanna Maj Schmidt, Stefania Smolkina, Su Yu Hsin, Max Wigger


Time-based Media

Prof. Simon Denny

HFBK Hamburg

Belia Brückner, Elio J Carranza, Merle Dammhayn, R Sharon Engelhardt, Christiany Erler, Marthe Fock, Taissa Fromme, Julia Koch, Gustav Holst Kurtzweil, Rahel Grote Lambers, Yi Li, Asma Abo Mostafa, Merlin Reichart, Lena-Marie Schütte, Prateek Vijan, Insa Wagner, Karla Zipfel


Dynamische Akustische Forschung (DAF)

Jan St. Werner

Susanne Dundler, Lucas Maximilian Frohn, Theresa Hartmann, Julius Jurkiewitsch , Valeria Stuflesser, Guoxin Tian, Linda Werner, Hans Wirsching


​​wer rastet, kann auch in den himmel schauen

Performative Installation

Michael Akstaller, ​​Natalie Baudy, Eva Borrmann, Maximilian Klas, Sophie Lichtenberg, Urs Humpenöder, Laura Immler, Stephan Janitzky, Hannes Köpke, Julia Liedel, David Moser, Thea Soti