RuhrKunstMuseen reception: the crayon-debate and a large project in the pipeline

Mülheim's mayor Dagmar Mühlenfeld sets the direction of the project and the discussion panel of the evening with her welcome speech at the RuhrKunstMuseen reception at the Alte Post venue. It is up to us to establish the RuhrKunstMusseen brand on the market sustainably, and thus to raise the attraction of the entire region including its cities and communities.“

The collaboration of the 20 art museums in the area will continue after the end of the European Capital of Culture. A secondary funding through the state Northrine-Westphalia for the RKM and the Ruhr Tourismus GmbH (RTG) has been secured up until 2013.

In the end, it's about the much-cited and often aspired sustainability in the framework of which Nicolaus Schaffhausen, director of the With museum in Rotterdam, brought along a dunning example from the neighbouring country. „Four years after, the Capital of Culture year (2001) in Rotterdam was completely gone from the heads of the people.“ It's good that there are a few millions to be invested in the Ruhr area. Yet by whom and for what exactly?

Rather invest in structural development than in projects


As managing director of RUHR.2010, Oliver Scheytt (left) thinks from the metropolis' perspective: „That's why I argue not to plan the 4.8 million for the use in projects (which is happening at the moment) but into structural development". Scheytt advocates for continuing education and the purchase of pens (Self-discovery: „This is a ridiculous example"), the development of joint programmes - in particular for the RTG since it represented an entire region with its 25 employees while other cities had several hundred employees working in tourism.

Bochum's Head of Cultural Affairs, Michael Townsend, reacts sceptical and gives his contra: "My life experience tells me something else to be honest. Those who have experienced a centralised allocation structure know that it's better to go next door to the REWE store to buy your crayons."

Marketing of excellence in the region


However, metropolitan and localiser agree regarding another aspect: Townsend: "A lot can be done through marketing of excellence in the region. You really have to communicate the much-insulted lighthouses in the region - in the theatre and art sector, in the music sector - internationally."

In this respect, Scheyyt and his RTG already have a new idea in the works, The extra stocks of the region shall be united to a joint project before the extra shift on July 9th. "We always need a bigger event to remain in discussion. However, this cannot replace the continuous producing and making and doing of the cultural establishments."

Get people from other regions to come to the Ruhr area

Regarding cultural establishments: Artist Jochen Gerz once again quarrels (we didn't expect anything different against the background of his 2-3 street project) with the fact that art & creativity was always thought of in the context of three classic rooms. According to him, the people would have to get more involved and people from other regions should be brought to the Ruhr area, in particular:

"We are looking for new elites and they have to come from every part of society. Vitality within our society seems to be very strong among the new residents, among those that move - among the nomads. And less strong among those that govern our heritage. If we don't motivate the new people in a new way, involve them and give them work - then this city becomes quite old and will be dying.“

Doesn't sound quite so optimistic even though one can resume that a few young and fresh art historians could be spotted in Mülheim on that evening - they were yawning due to the sometimes tenacious talk on stage but to them, the white wine and the abundant and really good buffet made up for it. That's how everything is and remains a matter of personal taste.

Photos: Michael Blatt
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Fri, 04.02.2011 0

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