Annual Program 2015/16 with Ulf Aminde Call for Young Fellows



The Academy of the Arts of the World sees itself as extending above and beyond conventional academic models and thus has an intense interest in exploring alternative and speculative teaching methods as well as self-reflexive and experimental student practices. It is with this goal in mind that the Youth Academy provides possibilities for active participation. Anyone between 18 and 27 years of age is welcome to join the Youth Academy. Over the course of a year, a guest curator will join the Young Fellows in developing and realizing a thematically focused art project in which the participants can bring to bear their different cultural backgrounds, questions, interests, and focuses in a productive discourse.


The Youth Academy provides its Young Fellows with an alternative experiential-education space, to be used in parallel to their academic training at universities or art schools. There is only one important prerequisite: a willingness to overcome consumerism and passivity and to join in defining a social space of collaboration. We understand the Youth Academy as a place where diversity is put into practice. It is the Youth Academy’s goal to use the possibilities of art to address urgent challenges such as racism, nationalism, economic and ecological crisis, as well as the changing situation in institutions of higher education.

The activities and workshops of the Youth Academy are held in German; English is also possible on demand.


In the year 2015/2016, the Young Fellows will join artist Ulf Aminde in developing an art project enriched by invited guest speakers and their lectures and workshop formats. The Young Fellows will meet for talks, discussions, and workshops at the ACADEMYSPACE. These meetings will shape a critical mode of aesthetic research, based on the autonomy and self-assertion of artistic practices and the self-reflexive questioning of collaboration itself. The project with Ulf Aminde begins with a getting-to-know workshop and a thematic introduction on October 24-25. Additionally, multi-day workshops are planned for December, February, and May. They will feature discussions, readings, working sessions and lectures with invited guests. The annual program concludes July 2016 with a final workshop week, culminating in a public presentation of the project. The Young Fellows enjoy free admission to all events hosted by the Academy of the Arts of the World Cologne.


*filmlaboratory#1: fremd gehen/playing away

Ulf Aminde (born 1969 in Stuttgart) is an artist and filmmaker based in Berlin. Working in photography, drawing, video art, and performance, Ulf Aminde experiments with human images and addresses socially relevant issues. Aided by a camera and strategies drawn from performative documentary film, theater, action art, music and, above all, dialogue with people beyond the pale of the art world, Aminde produces his works in many settings. These include prisons, facilities for the disabled, drug help centres, on the street, at Ikea, in employment offices, at the apartment of his cousin, in psychiatric facilities and with Taiwanese opera performers. Aminde’s projects often begin without a script and only generate their own narrations through the process of collaboration. Within these filmic settings, Aminde questions his own role as author, initiator and artist. For more information see

With *filmlaboratory, Ulf Aminde seeks to initiate a collaborative practice with the characteristics of a workshop. The project for the Youth Academy will be based on performative strategies used in combination with photo-, mobile phone- and video-cameras.

Following questions will be up for discussion:

  • How can we position ourselves as producers of art in a contemporaneity that already provides a central place for the “creative self”?
  • How can artistic practices draw connections from personal, private environments to socially binding, political contexts?
  • How can we infiltrate digital (moving) images in order to appropriate them as material? Which modes of collectivization are possible in a formation like that of the *filmlaboratory?
  • How can we involve other people who are not immediately familiar with the artistic practices of our middle class societies, and which new problems of representation and display do these entail?
    • How can we use experimentation in film and performance to imagine fictitious futures?
  • How can we speculate new communities on the grounds of radical diversity?

Our work together will:

  • demonstrate and analyze techniques and effects of documentary and artistic strategies in performance and film through examples
  • use methods of visual anthropology to address problems and questions on the perspective “behind the camera” as opposed to “in front of the camera”
  • show attempts at collectivization and strategies of self-empowerment through relevant examples from feminist film-making, theories and practices of performance, and DIY culture
  • develop a common conceptual framework by reading participatory and theatrical theories together

    The resulting discussion will facilitate individual and collaborative projects to be developed in further meetings. Gradually this will foster the emergence of the group’s own discursive space, to be expanded by inputs of special guests. Invitations have been extended to post-migrant artistic and cultural activists as well as film theorists. The Young Fellows of the Youth Academy will gradually apply these primarily discursive practices into collaborative artistic experiments in film. In the end, a “state of the art” exhibition will present these research results.
    Participation in the *filmlaboratory does not require any previous knowledge in the fields of theory, artistic practice, film, or performance. Instead, participants are expected to show initiative in using and acquiring the methods presented. All forms of practice can become part of artistic projects, as long as they can be included and grasped by the medium of film.


Download the application form, fill it out completely, and send it by October 18 2015 to or by post to following address:

Akademie der Künste der Welt/Köln gGmbH
Mediapark 7

50670 Köln
z. Hd. Georg Blokus