joi, 23 iunie 2011


Sehr geehrte Damen und Herren,
Doamnelor si Domnilor,
Ladies and Gentlemen,

My name is Daniela Kneip-Velescu and I just started an internship / Praktikum at Kunsthalle Batistei – a very misto place!
I´m  studying Fine Arts at Städelschule in Frankfurt am Main, where  I´m also involved in administrative Angelegenheiten representing the student body in the Konvent. Therefore I am really interested in the art scene and the Funktionalität or Dysfunktionalität of its structures specially in the realm of the representing institutions. 

Stellvertretend I will introduce you to the Leitmotiv and Ursprung of Kunsthalle Batistei and the urgent issue titled „Most wanted: DER DIREKTOR for KUNSTHALLE BATISTEI!“

(What is Kunsthalle Batistei or better still, how did we become Kunsthalle Batistei?)
Kunsthalle Batistei is the hidden dream-come-true of every contemporary art space in Romania in the last 20 years or so. Kunsthalle Batistei has achieved this air of inevitability and inescapable sense of self-importance and value after being part of the Bucharest Biennale.
Kunsthalle Batistei was formerly known as ParadisGaraj, a small independent space in the city center of Bucharest (Batistei street, just across from the US Embassy). It was re-baptized Kunsthalle Batistei in 2010, after the first DVD started playing video's in a loop on a new installed white screen, just on top of the former entrance of the space. Then, after two years functioning as a tiny ParadisGaraj, we suddenly realized the “Kunsthalle”-Potenzial had always been there. But „even a blind squirrel finds a nut once in a while“.  
Unfortunately it was a short-living hope as the owner had also noticed this potential and also the fact that it was much cleaner and whiter than before. Unsere Kunsthalle Batistei, even more than ParadisGaraj, was the usual Romanian success storyDas Leidmotiv. In the moment we turned into something better than our usual Do It Yourself precarious and dingy garage, it got taken away from us. In the moment we thought we made it, our success got stolen from us. It was kind of the same story when Romania joined the NATO, or joined the EU, there was an effort in trying to build better roads but Romania ended up being scolded for corruption.
(What does Kunsthalle Batistei look for in Sibiu/Hermannstadt?)
Kunsthalle Batistei has tried out a lot of solutions, a lot of strategies and artistic models. But somehow things always fell apart, got out of hand, there was a sloppy management, a lack of vision maybe, or just plain idleness. And Müßiggang ist aller Laster Anfang. So actually the situation got even worse:  we don't own a space and there´s a lack of money to pay the rent, we cannot offer very much. What we can offer is raw muscle power, we can carry materials (stone, wood, big monitors, etc), we also have a lot of primitive instincts and brutal creativity. We´re lacking brains and a Direktor that could lead us and Kunsthalle Batistei to the next Biennale, the next art fair, and maybe the next young curator-guru.
I think we have finally found the answer to our dilemma: We need a Direktor. Der Direktor should be of German or Austrian origin, specially a Schwab or a Sachsen would be most welcome. He could be mixed-blood, But he should have a German element and we prefer a German to come and fix things in Romania. We also have a historical precedent with the Hohenzollern dynasty, when the modern state of Romania was basically manufactured under Western inspection and wise rule. We need a German Leitfigur. We need a responsible person who knows the definition of Ordnung und Disziplin. A Direktor, who can establish these magnetic poles / diese magnetischen Pole in our artistic universe. As the Germans did so many good things in Romania, maybe they can also fix Kunsthalle Batistei. We think that only a Direktor can put an end to a vicious circle of misery, a circle of ineffectual and sloppy management and transform it into a virtuous circle of artistic and curatorial bonanza.
It is not enough to have funds, to get money from foundations, from banks or from the EU. We are convinced that we hauptsächlich are in need of a real boss, a Leitfigur. We can offer this Direktor total control over our institution. Kunsthalle Batistei can become his home, his pet project, his secret lover, his backyard, his parking lot or frontispiece. He can also change the name, he can add his family coat-of-arms to the Kunsthalle, advertise his family business or brand, or his hometown name. Der Direktor can have total financial control over Kunsthalle Batistei. We want to be the forefront, the Apex of the current trends and offer him totale Kontrolle on who gets thrown out, who gets employed, what art projects should be realized, and which decisions are richtig oder falsch. Der Direktor can also tell us whom to love and whom to hate. It would be perfect if he could transform Kunsthalle Batistei and improve or rather establish a Service-Landschaft. We consider this Service-Landschaft to be fundamental to the art scene in Romania. In Romania we are encountering a Service-Wüste, people are grumpy with bad manners and spiteful, maybe because of all the years of Communist rule, but now a German could improve the welcoming aspects of our Kunsthalle Batistei and turn it into a Service-Oase, to make it more magnetic to foreign artists and curators, their galleries and Kunstvereine.  

Because of the given fact, that we are invited to this fair in Sibiu, a former cultural Capital, an ancient German town, we would like to ask Klaus Johannis, the former mayor of Sibiu to become the honorific Direktor of Kunsthalle Batistei. We got this idea, because at some point in the past, to end a political crisis and strife between the parties in Romania, he was called as a German to fix things and maybe become our president. We can only offer a comfortable chair for our next Direktor with a cocktail to quench his thirst. We cannot offer him the presidency, only an important and all-powerful role as Der Direktor of our Kunsthalle Batistei if he would like to help us. Please become Der Direktor!
Vielen Dank für ihre Aufmerksamkeit!

Herzliche Grüße

the board of Kunsthalle Batistei    

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