Accompanying the exhibition bauhaus imaginista at HKW, the conference A New School will reflect on radical art and design schools, pedagogical reforms and sites of learning in Brazil, China, Germany, Great Britain, India, Nigeria, Rwanda and the USA, examining their relevance for contemporary art and design education. The perceived need to radicalize and reform arts education was a current which ran through the twentieth century, and the historical Bauhaus constituted one of the primary models upon which successive efforts to reimagine arts pedagogy was based. Established in Weimar in 1919 as a new model of “Gestaltungsschule” (design school), the Bauhaus created, in the immediate aftermath of the First World War and the German Revolution, a radical template for new forms of learning and unlearning, praxis and knowledges—reorganizing received divisions between the arts and crafts and recalibrating existing institutional models.
A New School reimagines the production of culture as a political project, asking what kind of institutions or para-institutional practices are necessary today. In order to rethink contemporary art and design education, panels and workshops will explore forms of collective learning and micro-organization as well as diverse forms of knowledges and practice. The conference will also foreground manual and practical knowledge, epistemological modes that are often overshadowed by the prevalence of a cognitive approach.