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Notgalerie Bochum

Notgalerie Bochum: "Jeder Mensch ist eine Institution" - Reinhold Zisser

Notgalerie Bochum
- every human is an institution -


Reinhold Zisser

Bochum Art Museum
Kortumstrasse 147, 44787 Bochum


From Saturday, October 22, 2022


From October 22nd, the Kunstmuseum Bochum will be the venue for a new project by the Notgalerie by the Viennese artist Reinhold Zisser. The location in the museum is the former museum cafe, which the artist adapted for his project. After opening the Notgalerie in Vienna, Prague, Porto and Hall in Tirol, this is the first project location in Germany. The opening is the beginning of a processual act to which artists and guests are invited to help shape the function of the place with their presence and interpretation.

The art project has its origins in 2015, when Reinhold Zisser found an empty wooden church on the outskirts of Vienna in late winter. This was built in 1946, right after World War II. It has been abandoned since 2000. He occupied the empty building, declared it a meta installation and gave it its name Notgalerie. In doing so, Zisser uses the empty architectural shell of the abandoned church building and the collective identity it represents as a shell to open a new autonomous space on the fringes of the Viennese art scene. This object then was used as a display for his own work and that of his colleagues. The project moved in Cosmos of expanded concept art, of social sculpture and sees itself as a processual “Gesamtkunstwerk”.

Then in 2017 the complete deconstruction, reaction to an impending demolition and the systematic dismantling into 10,000 numbered individual parts. The City of Vienna issues the artist with an interim usage contract, a new location with 15,000m2 is made available on the edge of one of the largest european urban development areas called Seestadt Vienna. Here Zisser puts everything back together with a few colleagues, at the northern end of the construction site, still nowhere. Only one subway station is already built, in anticipation of the coming city. For three years it will be the underground station of the Notgalerie. Zisser from the squatter to the owner,  Notgalerie from the occupied demolition object to a representative cultural project, funded by the City of Vienna. 

After three years, now in 2020, this section will also come to an end. Zisser fears that the content will come to a standstill or, even worse, that the city will take over too much. The Notgalerie will be dismantled again, as a stage play, performed in eight acts, over the entire summer. New numbering of all parts, but no direct rebuild. Notgalerie becomes a decentralized sculpture, a decentralized art institution. All numbered individual parts are entrusted to artists, galleries, institutions and people interested in art culture for safekeeping. From this point on, they should form the body of  Notgalerie. Over 500 agree to store parts for five years. In 2025, everything should come together again at a location that has yet to be determined, and Notgalerie should get a final location.

Some of the safekeeping places are art institutions / art places and offer the possibility not only to become storage but also to play venues. This is how the exhibition network at the locations presented at the beginning has been created up to the present. This will be completed in 2022 with Bochum and Arad (Israel) in order to test its function in cooperation projects from 2023. As the only museum location, the Kunstmuseum Bochum has a specific role to play. In Bochum, for example,
on the one hand the past of  Notgalerie is shown, on the other hand the present of the project and its locations can be experienced. Finally, it should also be possible to understand the location, beyond its narrative and representation, as a display to be designed for artists and in this function to make exhibitions and interventions possible in the near future

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