The master thesis of Helma Janssen was conducted in cooperation with the Kunsthalle Emden. In the context of the exhibition "Otto Mueller – Naturally nude" (4.6.–25.9.2016), Helma developed participatory ideas and designs that are shown through the following texts and images.
In countless artworks, Mueller, the expressionist, was devoted to his topic NUDES. He focused on human beings in relation to nature. Mueller is famous for his nude paintings at the beaches of the Baltic Sea. In his artworks he was continuously searching for the balance between human-being and nature. Therefore the idea came up to give Muellers longing a space: Muellers summer island.
The island was located in public space in front of the gallery and surrounded by trees and a small river. The beach chairs invited passengers to pause from daily business, hang out for a while, relax – and harmonize with the public surrounding.
To facilitate the participation of the exhibition and integrate the visitors, the idea came up to design a participatory soundcollage. The visitors were invited to name their favourite natural sounds on a lightboard located in the entrance hall of the gallery – and later on to record them with their smartphones. Over a few weeks the favourite sound-collection grew and eventually the sounds were put together to a unique soundcollage which was played in the exhibition and made also available via QR-code outside at the "summer island".
If you consider the museum as a place where you can experience new worlds and learn new things, it is important to build bridges to the presence. Our presence is full of contradictions. In the mediation of art, you often get only one perspective: the art historical, although there could be hundreds of possible alternative perspectives. The concept of "subjective expert opinions" offers many different views on the selected painting "Two Bathing Girls". The visitors can sit down in a beach chair and listen to the views of a psychologist, a restorer and persons with different cultural backgrounds.
MUELLERS MEGA PUZZLE: The artwork "Boy in front of three Girls" is part of the collection of the Kunsthalle Emden and therefore plays an important role for the gallery. Pushed by the thought that an artwork has got the power to stimulate conversations between visitors, the idea came up to design a huge puzzle in front of the artwork. It forms a contact zone and strengthens the possibility of encounter between visitors through art. The puzzle has a format of 120x160cm and is located directly in front of the original artwork. It can be puzzled from both, front and back side.