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At the Beginning, We Make Connections


After the introductory day, the atmosphere at the Summer Academy is enthusiastic and industrious, although somehow casually vigilant. Everybody is still settling in, getting to know each other, gathering materials and exchanging ideas. The charge of the creative act is growing by the hour, infecting even the most resistant of the attendants.


 Connecting with the work - Melissa Gordon's class

Walking through the classes, one of my biggest impressions was the difference in collective behavior of different groups of people. Artists are often described as introverted and observant, but sometimes it’s their body language that says it all. While the painters in both Melissa Gordon’s and Mark van Yetter’s class were already very much involved in their work paying little attention to the world outside of canvas, photographers and curators were engaged in a lively discussion, all reacting differently (or indifferently) to the presence of a blogger, all very much focused on their work.

Mark van Yetter's class connects while drawing together after a live model

Intrigued by the work they are about to produce, I chatted briefly with each of the teachers. Melissa Gordon’s class was entirely busy with movement, while the artists fulfilled their daily task based on “impossible” propositions. A dedicated group of people is working with Tex Rubinowitz, each very much involved in their own piece, are connecting through an interesting subject - a gap between the teeth! Lukas Pusch’s co-teacher, Michael Wegerer, informed me that the preparations for the first prints are close to the finish, while Ruth Noack is preparing her curators for Vienna studio visits this week. After learning about different photographic practices of her students, Valerie Jouve shared some of her experiences and views with the class, igniting a lively exchange that ought to last throughout the course. The views and manners are many, some seemingly detached, but in the essence all connected through the passion of the people making the art.

Connecting over lunch - Grace Samboh, Mark van Yetter and Valerie Jouve

In this quickly accelerating atmosphere, I am connecting as well. From everyday interaction with the city and my new colleagues, I am slowly building a link with the artists that surround me, with the images, gestures, instincts, and stories they are exchanging with each other and with the world.


Tonight, I am looking forward to the Artist's Talks by Melissa Gordon and Lukas Pusch, while tomorrow I will witness the printing process first-hand.


Till then!



18/07/17 15:53 Summer Academy 2017

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