Who Pays?

10 February – 21 May 2017

“Art = Capital”, as Joseph Beuys puts it. This succinct formula sums up his understanding of the world: “The only revolutionary force is the power of human creativity.” Based on the Beuysian notion of capital, the exhibition Who Pays? takes a look at changing ideas of money and capital and the associated transformation of meanings and values. Who Pays? brings together a number of artistic positions from the 1960s to the present. They allow us to examine our notions of wealth and poverty, of give and take, and of participation from different angles, concepts that nowadays are mostly reduced to purely economic aspects. “Everything is so very much in motion.” These words written by the author Gertrude Stein in the context of the rapid change of language in the Elizabethan age can also be taken to describe today’s fast-paced changes. Our Western societies are in a state of fundamental upheaval. Not only rising rates of burnout and depression testify to deep-lying anxieties, but also an emerging need for seclusion and safeguarding assets and values. All this in the knowledge that we are using up more resources than Earth can generate. On the other hand we see many and diverse approaches that see potentials and opportunities for a more sustainable future. What is the role of the concept of capital in this context? And what “capital” role can art play? The title of the exhibition Who Pays? is based on a fluorescent sign created by the artist group RELAX (chiarenza & hauser & co) and addresses every single individual.

Artworks by Ovidiu Anton, Gianfranco Baruchello, Joseph Beuys, Susanne Bosch, Marcel Broodthaers, Filipa César, Felix Gonzalez-Torres, David Hammons, Diango Hernández, Thomas Hirschhorn, Anja Kirschner & David Panos, Alicja Kwade, Thomas Lehnerer, Mark Lombardi, RELAX (chiarenza & hauser & co), Christof Salzmann


A variety of cooperations Who Pays? is a production of Kunstmuseum Liechtenstein, curated by Christiane Meyer-Stoll. An integral part of the show is a diverse cooperation with other institutions in Liechtenstein, Germany, Austria and Switzerland. The artsprogram of Zeppelin University, Friedrichshafen, curates the Archive of Social Sculpture in a room dedicated to Beuys. At the beginning of the 1970s a group formed in Achberg in the Allgäu whose aim – under the heading The Third Way – was to try to find alternative models of society. They devised social ideas that remain of influence today, with Beuys elaborating his extended concept of art. The material collected by publisher Rainer Rappmann documents that atmosphere of new beginnings in the 1970s and 1980s in an archive of great importance for post-war German history. For his contribution to the exhibition Who Pays?, the artist Christof Salzmann examined the historical collection with regard to the concept of money and capital in Beuys’s work.

As part of the exhibition, the  Zukunftswerkstatt Liechtenstein will be relocating its activities to Kunstmuseum Liechtenstein. An action space for flexible use will be installed in one of the exhibition rooms. By means of activities and events, the aim is to allow visitors to experience alternative forms of work and economic activity. Together with the Wanderkiosk, a temporary architecture intended to enliven public space, the aim is to create a place that invites people to stay a while and that can be used for a variety of purposes. As a modular open space, the Wanderkiosk is designed to explore the social and cultural potential and “capital”, encouraging us to reflect on money and ideas of exchange and sharing. Visitors are invited to use this space for various purposes.

In addition, the full supporting programme draws on further cooperations:

Haus Gutenberg, Balzers, that has chosen Silence is Golden – Let’s Talk About Money! as its topic for 2017, Liechtensteinische Kunstgesellschaft, Filmclub im Takino, Schaan, TAK Theater Liechtenstein, Schaan, Dialogprojekt Arbogast, Götzis, planoalto Institut, St. Gallen, and TALENTE Vorarlberg.


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