THINK TANK: The Cosmologies of Objects

ADH is participating in a think tank in Frankfurt with our partners TALKING OBJECTS!

The think tank, happening from the 3rd to the 6th of July, will deal with the cosmologies of objects and focuses on three main topics materiality, spirituality and gendered objects.

The Cosmologies of Objects

think tank and exhibition
3. – 6. July 2024
@Villa 102 & Museum Angewandte Kunst.

The TALKING OBJECTS ARCHIVE is a digital platform looking at questions of decolonial knowledge production and will be launched in December 2024. The archive is strongly informed by the accompanying ongoing artistic research project TALKING OBJECTS LAB and is interested in poly-perceptivity and plural knowledge systems. Starting with objects coming from the collection of European and African Museums we are fanning out a polyphonic universe of knowledge. Objects are thus made to speak – TALKING OBJECTS – serve as door openers and enable a different form of relating. The archive is developed together with African Digital Heritage (Nairobi) and a variety of thinkers and artists experimenting with text, images, audio and video to create their own cosmologies of objects in digital space. The digital archive will be open to the public and is aimed at researchers, practitioners working in the arts and those interested in decolonial perspectives on knowledge production.

Three think tanks will be held to accompany the development of the TALKING OBJECTS ARCHIVE: in Dakar (May 2023), in Frankfurt (July 2024) and in Nairobi (November 2024). The think tank in Frankfurt deals with the cosmologies of objects and focusses on three main topics materiality, spirituality and gendered objects. The think tank will take place in the Villa 102 of the Kfw Foundation and in the Museum Angewandte Kunst Frankfurt and will be accompanied by an exhibition with artists from the TALKING OBJECTS Artist Residency Programme.

The think tank Program as well as the Exhibition Cosmologies of Objects have been curated by Isabel Raabe and Mahret Ifeoma Kupka.


Wednesday, 3 July: 6pm @Villa 102
Exhibition Opening The Cosmologies of Objects

TALKING OBJECTS artists in residency Élise Fitte-Duval, Karwitha Karimi, Adam Yawe. 
Please register via kfw-stiftung.de/en/events 

Thursday, 4 July: 10am – 5.30pm @Villa 102
INTERNAL Workshop with the members of the TALKING OBJECTS team, members of African Digital Heritage, members of Groupe of Action and Critical Study Africa/GAEC, Visual Intelligence, Erik Stein, members of the participating German museums.

7pm – 9pm @Museum für Angewandte Kunst

A performative conversation with objects from the collection of the Museum Angewandte Kunst, hosted by Aisha Camara (moderator/community organizer, Frankfurt). Researchers from different disciplines as well as the public are invited to share their experiences with an object. There is no hierarchisation of knowledge. What does it trigger? What associations does the object evoke? What questions do I want to ask the object, what do I want to know about it? A poly-perspective view of the object and an interactive conversation with the object emerges.

Friday, 5 July (Closed Sessions)
10am – 5 pm @Museum Angewandte Kunst

INTERNAL Meeting of the Digital Group

10am – 1pm @Ledermuseum, Offenbach am Main

Saturday, 6 July

3pm – 5.30pm @Museum Angewandte Kunst
Listening to Objects

What can objects tell us about gender roles? Can objects lose their spirituality or can other objects take their place? And how does materiality behave in digital space?

Introduction Isabel Raabe (curator, TALKING OBJECTS, Berlin) & Mahret Ifeoma Kupka (curator, TALKING OBJECTS, Frankfurt)

Film Screening “Becoming Kaspale” by Syowia Kyambi

3 Sessions on Materiality, Spirituality & Gendered Objects 

Conversations on Materiality with Mutanu Kyany’a (researcher, Nairobi) & Adam Yawe, (artist, Nairobi), moderated by Isabel Raabe

Conversation on Spirituality with Abdourahmane Seck & Eleonore Wiedenroth Coulibaly (community organizer & activist, Frankfurt), moderated by Malick Ndiaye (curator, Dakar)

Conversations on Gendered Objects with Mũthoni Mwangi (researcher, Nairobi) & Elise Fitte-Duval (artist, Dakar, moderated by Mahret Ifeoma Kupka

Muuga? Grief is a portal; bring your heart, I’ll bring the water.
Poetry Reading by Karwitha Kirimi (artist, Nairobi)

Event Venues:

  • Villa 102 – KfW Stiftung: Bockenheimer Landstraße 102, 60323 Frankfurt am Main
  • Museum Angewandte Kunst: Schaumainkai 17, 60594 Frankfurt am Main

Funded by: Die Beauftragte der Bundesregierung für Kultur und Medien/BKM (Federal Cultural Commissioner for Culture and the Media), KfW Stiftung, Heinrich-Böll-Stiftung, Auswärtiges Amt (Federal Foreign Office), Goethe-Institut. 

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