künstlerischer Projekträume
und -initiativen
Der Begriff „Kunst“ ist spannend, da er für jede Person etwas anderes bedeuten kann. Gerade in der Diversität der Ansichten über „Kunst“ liegt ihre Kraft. Das macht sich auch in der freien Szene der Projekträume bemerkbar. Es werden die unterschiedlichsten Sichtweisen auf und über Kunst vertreten und nichts unterliegt der Geschmackslimitierung einer kleinen Elite. Das bedeutet eine große Vielfalt und Innova­tionsfreude an künstlerischer, kultureller Entwicklung. Die Projektraumarbeit verstärkt generell das Interesse an künstlerischen Prozessen und verlagert die Aufmerksamkeit vom Objekt hin zum Entstehungsprozess. − Was insbesondere Kunst in Projekträumen im öffentlichen Raum kann: Leute aus der Bevölkerung neugierig machen, sich die Kunst vor Ort anzuschauen, bei Gelegenheit den Kontakt zu Betreiber*innen und Künstler*innen aufzunehmen, mit ihnen ins Gespräch zu kommen, und: wiederzukommen. Also: die Begegnung mit Kunst im Alltag ermöglichen.Ashley started out as a self-funded project. This allowed presenting art in a self-determined way, especially by working artists not part of the commercial art market but also those flying under the radar of larger public institutions. Of course, this model also brought up the question of sustainability. In the last few years, with rising rents and spaces closing down, this question has become more and more pressing for everyone on the free scene. Winning the project space prize in 2018 was a pivotal moment for Ashley, particularly because beyond recognizing the work done by independently-run spaces, the prize money could be spread over several years to keep our program running. However, a prize also follows the logic of exceptionality which puts a lot of pressure on project spaces to ‘perform’. Hence, the structural funding program by the Senate significantly changed the conditions of our work because by ­confronting us with the administrative work inherent in public funding, we evolved our own internal structure to accommodate longer-term planning while still maintaining the flexibility needed to track the subtle changes in the art communities around us. Before this program, going from project to project rather than planning two years ahead, it was difficult to apply for project funding due to the fact that application deadlines are often one year in advance and therefore difficult to meet if you are not a publicly-funded institution or commercial project with the resources to plan several months or even a year ahead. So this program does help a lot to allow project spaces to stake a claim on public art funding. At the same time, with the structural funding approved on a two-year basis, it remains unclear how this mode of operating will last a few years, or even one year into the future.There is probably no ideal project space, and that is exactly what is ideal about this format; the openness and the freedom that allows it to take any shape and direction. Project spaces are versatile structures that can be morphed in many different ways, reflecting the circumstances and the people that are part of the process. To us, a project space is a kind of utopia, although there is no fixed ­concept of an ideal project space. Project spaces are very much constantly evolving, changing, and adapting.