Freedom and Resposibility

The coronavirus and the climate crisis have made this theme more topical than it has been for a long time. But art and creative crafts are also affected. Read more in Art Aurea’s autumn issue 3-2021.

Wildfires are burning and floodwaters are claiming lives around the globe –also in Germany and elsewhere in Europe with increasing frequency. Nonetheless, many people still insist on exercising what they perceive as their personal freedoms: the freedom to drive oversized cars, to travel wherever and as often and they wish, to eat meat every day, to poison the soil and the groundwater, to buy the most absurd and unnecessary short-lived products, and much more. Even their concern for the livelihoods of future generations has not yet persuaded them to reconsider their rights to freedom. Nor has it prompted them to live more balanced lives with an awareness of their responsibility for others and for the common good.

Time and again, artists have fought for artistic freedom. Making art is a noble endeavor, and where it is suppressed, other democratic rights are likewise no longer guaranteed. Artists and designers are generally sensitive people, who feel called upon to accept greater responsibility for the needs of our time. Quite a few artists have long since begun to do so. Several shining examples can be found in the autumn edition of Art Aurea.

Otto Baier, Danner Stiftung

The Munich-based smith and artist Otto Baier grew up in his parents’ smithy in the Obermenzing district of Munich. By training as a blacksmith and carefully executing commissions from customers, he fulfilled his responsibility to preserve one of Germany’s oldest forges, while his sculptural artworks fulfil his need for freedom. Baier embodies impressive proof that freedom and responsibility are not mutually exclusive or, as Julie Metzdorf headlines, “freedom can be combined with tradition”.

Gabriele und Christian von Lehsten

Gabriele and Christian von Lehsten are another example of combining freedom with responsibility. In 2004, they fulfilled a lifelong dream by acquiring and stylishly renovating the historic Rothen manor house in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern. Together with other designers, they organize cultural events, stimulate political discussions, and use their estate and its beautiful rooms for public exhibitions and concerts.

Renée Reichenbach

Renée Reichenbach, Fischmesser [Fishknife], 2018. Foto R. Hentze.

Our article about the Metzger Gallery’s exhibition of works by Renée Reichenbach, Antje Scharfe and Karl Fulle shows that freedom and responsibility need to be taught and learned (page 78). All three studied with Gertraud Möhwald at Burg Giebichenstein in Halle an der Saale while the GDR was still in power. “With her unorthodox and tolerant, yet unyielding attitude, she encouraged generations of students to engage in disciplined, independent artistic work…. She asked about the ‘justification of each piece.’” Renate Luckner-Bien’s quote sums up how freedom and responsibility should be exercised and applied to the predicament in which our world finds itself.

Laurenz Stockner, Photo Jürgen Eheim

“Alchemy of the Surface” is the name of the exhibition with works by Peter Bauhuis, Laurenz Stockner and Arnita Tarnutzer in the Gewerbemuseum Winterthur. Preview in the autumn 2021 edition of Art Aurea. Here a copper vessel by Laurenz Stockner. Photo Jürgen Eheim.

Roger und Jacotte Capron

Ceramic sculpture by Roger and Jacotte Capron. Exhibition at the Galerie de la Perle Noire in Agde, southern France. Preview in the autumn 2021 edition of Art Aurea. Photo by Philipp Capron.

Wasinburee Supanichvoraparch

Morai by Wasinburee Supanichvoraparch, 2021, height 58 cm. Another exhibition report on the impressive ceramics from the Cobalt series as well as painterly meditations in black and white by Jiratchaya Pripwai. In addition, antique art from Thailand in the gallery Marianne Heller, Heidelberg.

With the new Arts Crafts World section and a whole range of other interesting reviews of exhibits, the magazine’s autumn issue features a veritable cornucopia of exciting works of contemporary art and design – as freely as possible and in full responsibility for a better world in which art, culture and nature thrive in harmony with one another.

Concept and goals

ART AUREA is published quarterly and is completely bilingual in German and English. The magazine connects cultures and peoples as a globally unique forum for all forms of art, which originated from artisanal traditions.

ART AUREA presents exemplary works and concepts by both established artists and younger talents. It treats art and creative crafts equally as essential components of the culture of daily life.

ART AUREA pays particular attention to the harmony of culture, art and crafts with nature and the environment. Each of its four annual issues offers diverse inspirations for a meaningful and sustainable life with art objects and sophisticatedly designed “things of culture.”

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