How is John Searle’s theory that "all functions are observer-relative" to be understood in the context of curatorial practice? This question goes right to the heart of the functions that are assigned to the three key players in the field of art – curator, artist and recipient. It is relevant inasmuch as it makes it possible to name specific allocations of work activities and roles, which are in turn linked to corresponding hierarchies and positionings within the field.
Where these three protagonists can be seen to disassociate themselves from one another in an unproductive way, transdisciplinarity and the combination of theory and practice offer a counterproposal. Since it was first introduced in the 1980s, the course of studies entitled 'applied cultural sciences and aesthetic practice' has attempted to take this into account. The experience I gathered during my studies continues to influence my approach to art and to all cultural manifestations; examples of this approach could be seen in exhibitions such as "ein|räumen – Arbeiten im Museum", "Montags Realität herstellen", "Lieber zu viel als zu wenig – Kunst, Musik, Aktionen zwischen Hedonismus und Nihilismus 1976-1985" or "Berlin Alexanderplatz. Urban Art Stories".
My exhibition practice is therefore not confined to the art institution and the exhibition space; instead it opens up the definitive assignments of functions and enables constant interaction: an interweaving and networking of spaces, media, artworks, their produces and their users.
In future I can certainly see myself organizing 'classical' exhibitions as well as unconditional and gestural displays. Above all, however, the exhibitions I have in mind involve multiplied or maximized practice, following the maxim of Berlin’s hippest clubs: "Schlafen ist Kommerz!" (Sleeping is commerce!).
Petra Reichensperger (2007)