Tuesday, November 25, 2014, 07:30 pm | Humanities

Healer, Messiah, Rock Star: Bruno Gröning and the Early Federal Republic

Bruno Gröning shot like a rocket across the heavens of the early Federal Republic of Germany. Emerging from obscurity in 1949, he swiftly rose to enormous fame, preaching that evil was responsible for illness and claiming to channel divine power to cure it. For a time, Gröning’s name was on the lips of nearly everyone: politicians, city and regional officials, medical doctors, university professors, police investigators, lawyers, documentary filmmakers, and members of the press. He attracted workers and aristocrats, men, women, and children, movie stars, and government ministers and members of the Allied occupation administration. But what was Gröning's meaning in this immediate postwar, post-Nazi moment? Indeed, what did it mean to be a messiah after Hitler? Monica Black will explore these and other questions in her lecture.

Thursday, November 27, 2014 | Architecture

Form Versus Function: Mies and the Museum

The Neue Nationalgalerie, with its open, universal space, is the last building Mies van der Rohe planned independently and is therefore regarded as his great legacy. The building’s imminent refurbishment once again sharpens the focus on the logic of the building, on the relationship between form and function. Since opening, in 1968, the museum has continuously been used to showcase the twentieth-century art collection of the Nationalgalerie, as well as special exhibitions. The building has long been a world famous classic of modernism for its clarity and rigor.

The colloquium “Form versus Function: Mies and the Museum” brings together architects, artists, academics, curators, and architectural conservators to address the building’s dual role as important monument and outstanding museum. Alongside a presentation of the planned refurbishment by British architect David Chipperfield, Mies van der Rohe’s grandson and former project manager Dirk Lohan will talk about the planning and construction process of the Neue Nationalgalerie in the 1960s. Other lectures deal with a reflection on specific aesthetic and museum conditions of the exhibition building inter alia from a cultural studies perspective by American Academy fellow Beatriz Colomina.

Location: Neue Nationalgalerie / Potsdamer Straße 50 / 10785 Berlin / www.smb.museum (Download the brochure)

No registration required.
Welcoming remarks begin at 5pm on November 27. 

Tuesday, December 02, 2014, 07:30 pm | Humanities
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Weeping for Dido: Rhetoric, Gender, and Classical Emotions in the Medieval Classroom

In this lecture, Marjorie Woods discusses her research into the copious marginal comments in medieval Latin manuscripts, including over a hundred school copies of classical texts, to learn what passages received special attention from teachers and were performed by students in the classroom. Woods, a professor of English at the University of Texas at Austin, unravels how the focus upon emotional passages helped students learn Latin and remember important literary texts—and, moreover, how performing speeches by women allowed boys to explore emotions that were denied them outside the classroom.

Thursday, December 04, 2014, 07:00 pm | Arts and Culture
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The Unstable Object

As technology continues to disrupt so many social and economic formations, our relationship to every object we encounter is transformed. Things now present an entirely new register of unstable meanings. Everything is made elsewhere... someplace across the planet; and the invisible men, women, and children who produce these things can only be imagined. What are their working days like? How do the objects they produce connect us? What kinds of exchanges take place through the object itself? "The Unstable Object" is a series of films and installations that observe the uncanny conditions of labor and mass production in a world of extreme change. In his lecture, Daniel Eisenberg questions the nature and meaning of work, objects, consumption, and networks in today’s globalized world: “I am interested in the ways that ‘things’ transmit and elicit sensations of all kinds,” he writes, “both for the producer and the consumer. The object becomes an intermediary, a medium for the transmission of sensation from the one who makes, to the one who takes.”

Please note this lecture takes place at the Deutsches Hygiene-Museum, in Dresden.

Monday, December 08, 2014, 06:30 pm | Economics
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The Source of Economic Turbulences

Former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan’s book The Age of Turbulence (Penguin Books 2008) discusses the global economy and its ever faster, ever more unpredictable global flow. Robert Z. Aliber, a professor emeritus of international economics and finance at the University of Chicago, postulates that one feature of this turbulence is a greater variability in the prices of commodities, bonds, stocks, real estate, and currencies than ever before. In this lecture, Aliber, a 2002 Academy alumnus, will examine the effect of greater variability on countries that have experienced banking and currency crises as well as sharp declines in employment and economic activity. He will consider whether floating currencies have been necessary because of an abundance of shocks, or whether most of the shocks that led to large changes in the prices of currencies and securities have resulted from changes in the demand for foreign securities.

Words of Welcome by Albrecht Sommer, Chief of Staff of the President of the Berlin Headquarter of the Deutsche Bundesbank

Location: Historical Boardroom in the Berlin Headquarter of Deutsche Bundesbank, Leibnizstrasse 10, 10625 Berlin

Registration required by December 3, 2014; limited seating available

Thursday, December 11, 2014, 08:00 pm | Arts and Culture

Line Describing a Cone

Guna S. Mundheim Fellow Anthony McCall's Line Describing a Cone is made from a beam of white light emitted from a film projector positioned at one end of a darkened room. Passing through the projector is an animated film of a thin, arcing line that, frame by frame, gradually joins up to become a complete circle. Over the course of thirty minutes this line of light traces the circumference of the circle as a projection on the far wall while the beam takes the form of a three-dimensional hollow cone. Mist from smoke machines gives the beam of light a greater density, making it appear almost tangible.

For the first time Arsenal is showing the classic Line Describing a Cone (1973) alongside its digital remake Line Describing a Cone 2.0 (2010). The screening will be followed by a discussion with Anthony McCall about the nature of film technology and medium specificity.

Location: Arsenal - Institute for Film and Video Art, Potsdamer Straße 2, 10785 Berlin

Tickets: 7.50 € | members 5 € | with Berlin-Pass: 3 €

Monday, December 15, 2014, 08:00 pm | Arts and Culture

The Unstable Object

For his most recent film, Daniel Eisenberg, the Ellen Maria Gorrissen Fellow in fall 2014, travelled to a state-of-the-art Volkswagen factory in Dresden, where shoppers look on as their individualized cars are hand-built by high-tech specialists; to Chicago Lighthouse Industries, where blind workers produce wall clocks for federal government offices; and to a deafening cymbal factory in Istanbul, where today's most sought-after cymbals are cast and hammered by hand, exactly as they were four hundred years ago. Each location highlights one of the senses of sight, sound, and touch. The Unstable Object quietly probes the relationships our global economy creates between individuals around the world. The screening will be followed by a discussion with Daniel Eisenberg.

Location: Arsenal - Institute for Film and Video Art, Potsdamer Straße 2, 10785 Berlin

Tickets: 7.50 € | members 5 € | with Berlin-Pass: 3 €