*foundationClass - from within the cracks

12 December 2020–28 March 2021

Online presentation

Podcast series

nGbK, Oranienstraße 25, 10999 Berlin


Osamah Abouzor, Najwa Ahmed, Ahmad Alali, Anwar Alatrash, SharPuta Alatrash, Rula Ali, Fadi Aljabour, Mayada Alkayal, Marwa Almokbel, Mohanad Alsneeh, Amel Alzakout, Akhil Amer, Ulf Aminde, Reem Awad, Anoush Azizi, Yemisi Babatola, Tewa Barnosa, D'Andrade, Annabel Daou, Mira Debaja, Max Grau, Richard Khaldon Al Halah, Mohamad Halbouni, Diwali Hasskan, Nadira Husain, Azad Ibrahim, Mahmoud Ismail, Eva Karduck, Katharina Kersten, Serena Khan, Sana Al Kurdi, Cam-Anh Luong, Markues, Roda Mehrez, Hami Mehr, Dyaa Naim, Marina Naprushkina, Nour Nasreddine, Ayham Omarin, Ramin Parvin, Krishan Rajapakshe, Can Rastovic, Dachil Sado, Aram Al Saed, Miriam Schickler, Batoul Sedawi, Oula Soleman, Hatef Soltani, Yara Sulaiman, Ghaith Tahsen, Aref Torkaman, Vera Varlamova, Noor Yasin

Project group *foundationClass

Hub for collective learning

»from within the cracks« is an audiovisual show, an archive, a construction site, a method, a space of reformulating power relations, born and raised in the togetherness of the *foundationClass collective. A crack is a breaking point, a sign of destruction, but also an undefined space from which opportunities arise. Operating from this space of brokenness that is in but not of the art institution, the members of the *foundationClass collective are very much confronted with absence, impossibility, obstacles - everything that forms part of the mechanisms of structural discrimination.
In the current project the *foundationClass collective decided to turn these power structures upside down, to blow up that concept of limitation and to forbid structural discrimination to continue to marginalize *foundationClass members. Instead, it is turned into a research object, into energy and creative potential.
In a large-scale installation at nGbK, a digital hub for collective learning will be set up. The material of offer includes a collaborative podcast series, an online archive and a digital presentation of artworks on the nGbK website. In this way, the *foundationClass shares working methods, viewpoints and questions resulting from the limitations to collective learning in the analogue social sphere. In this project, works by the participating artists form the point of departure for collective work.
The *foundationClass is both a study programme based at weißensee academy of art berlin and an artist collective. As a study program the *foundationClass seeks to facilitate access to art academies for people who migrated to Germany and who are affected by racism. In its artistic practice the collective fosters inclusive forms of teaching and education and deconstructs the mechanisms of exclusion inherent in white art institutions. In spite of the obstacles posed by the academy, the *foundationClass constitutes a community within it. It creates a social space where knowledge, artistic and design practices are not consumed, but collectively questioned.

Installation: *foundationClass - from within the cracks
The presentation »*foundationClass - from within the cracks« at nGbK is negotiating five beautiful years of *foundationClass in and outside of the institution of weißensee kunsthochschule berlin and far beyond. Each installation relates to a journey/search of collective artistic practice, carrying love, laughter, tears and the political struggle in and with it. The artists of the *foundationClass collective not only use the obstacles engendered by discriminatory structures in order to just point or blank out the institution’s contradictions. Instead, they use them as a point of departure for their collective art and to claim inclusive art education.

Podcast series: *foundationClass / speaks
As part of the *foundationClass Learning Hub »from within the cracks« at the nGbK, the idea for the podcast series *foundationClass/speaks was born in December 2020. A communication tool and learning space, a life raft in the impossibility of an exhibition opening in times of pandemic. Let’s do podcast.

»*foundationClass/speaks« sprang literally »from within the cracks« as a creative stopgap in times of limited contact but also as an amplifier, a mouthpiece and an echo chamber for what the artists’ collective wants to share - now just like that: the *foundationClass speaks: fighting to speak, angry and questioning, informing, fragile, teaching and grieving, negotiating the collectives’ and individual relationships to their status quo around anti-racism, intersectionality, queerness, identity, empowerment, femmeness, allies, commemoration culture, noise, safe(r) spaces, and so much more. It is a journey of speaking, of verbalizing the unspeakable - it is an attempt to show vulnerability and invite empathy for stories that are unheard. It is a journey of documenting voices that tell their own story and form a living archive.
The first five episodes kick off a podcast journey with so many parts, aspects, and topics still to come.

A book: *foundationClass – the book
…will be published at nGbK publishing house. It is an attempt to answer the question what *foundationClass was, is and will be to the many people who have been shaping it since 2016. It is a gesture of appreciation and solidarity to all those on whose shoulders we are standing, as well as to the many who are struggling alongside us. The book wants to place *foundationClass into a broader context of emancipatory practices within the realms of art and education. (ISBN: 978-3-938515-83-9)