Fr, 31.5.24



Exhibition Projects & D21/Solo
for the D21 annual programme 2025/26



The D21 Kunstraum sees its­elf as a plat­form and expe­ri­men­tal field for local and inter­na­tio­nal artists. It shows group and solo exhi­bi­ti­ons on soci­al­ly rele­vant the­mes, pri­ma­ri­ly in the fields of new media, per­for­mance, pho­to­gra­phy and installation.
Further infor­ma­ti­on at:

As part of its annu­al the­me ALIEN, the D21 Kunstraum is loo­king for exhi­bi­ti­on pro­jects that deal with the topic artis­ti­cal­ly and cura­to­ri­al­ly. The ali­en appears in various art and cul­tu­ral forms such as theat­re, games, visu­al arts and lite­ra­tu­re and is stron­gly lin­ked to deba­tes on iden­ti­ty and empower­ment. The annu­al the­me of D21 is about the idea of the “ali­en” as an image for the “for­eign”, but also about ali­en­ati­on, the ali­en­ating in the (sup­po­sedly) familiar.

What exact­ly is an ali­en? In English, the ambi­gui­ty of the term as “for­eign, dif­fe­rent” beco­mes par­ti­cu­lar­ly clear: “Aliens” are peo­p­le who are not citi­zens or natio­nals of the coun­try that sets its­elf apart: Citizens vs. ali­ens. The term “ali­en” here the­r­e­fo­re pri­ma­ri­ly refers to tho­se who are for­eign (to us). The ali­en as we know it from sci­ence fic­tion films needs the addi­ti­on “extra­ter­restri­al life” or “ali­en life”. The term “ali­en­ated” descri­bes very pre­cis­e­ly how many peo­p­le in mar­gi­na­li­sed com­mu­ni­ties descri­be their own role in a sexist, anti-femi­nist, homo­pho­bic, racist or anti-Semitically dis­cri­mi­na­to­ry socie­ty. The ali­en has the­r­e­fo­re been used in que­er theo­ries sin­ce the 1960s, espe­ci­al­ly by LGBTQIA*, PoC and Black peo­p­le, as an alle­go­ry for the fee­ling of being ali­en­ated and sepa­ra­ted from a hete­ro­nor­ma­ti­ve socie­ty of white supre­ma­cy. Aspects of the alle­go­ry “ali­en” emer­ge as a for­eign and self-desi­gna­ti­on, a term of strugg­le, empowe­ring appro­pria­ti­on and struc­tu­ral criticism.

Unfortunately, peo­p­le tend to feel empa­thy only for the clo­sest, most simi­lar cir­cle and reject the sup­po­sedly for­eign. We all other­ni­se, compa­re our­sel­ves with others and distance our­sel­ves based on the idea that peo­p­le and socie­ties dif­fer signi­fi­cant­ly from our own social group in terms of life­style, cul­tu­re or other cha­rac­te­ristics. This is an ali­en­ati­on that takes place in the cent­re of socie­ty, be it becau­se of gen­der, sexu­al ori­en­ta­ti­on, reli­gious affi­lia­ti­on, eth­ni­ci­ty, natio­na­li­ty, social posi­ti­on within a socie­ty, or even becau­se of sup­po­sed bio­lo­gi­cal dif­fe­ren­tia­ti­on cri­te­ria bet­ween peo­p­le. People of cer­tain skin colours and iden­ti­ties are made invi­si­ble or par­ti­cu­lar­ly expo­sed through bias, which makes them sus­cep­ti­ble to vio­lence through racism and anti-Semitism, exclu­si­on and vio­lent crime.

The exhi­bi­ti­ons and accom­pany­ing pro­gram­mes should show the the­me of the “ali­en” in the visu­al and per­for­ma­ti­ve arts in an over­lap­ping and interlo­cking way, pos­si­bly expan­ded to include motifs from gam­ing, film, lite­ra­tu­re and theat­re. In addi­ti­on to the artis­tic posi­ti­ons, the exhi­bi­ti­ons can also build bridges to design or comic cul­tu­re and use cul­tu­ral-his­to­ri­cal back­ground know­ledge to illu­mi­na­te the enorm­ous poten­ti­al of the ali­en as a role model.

Application for group exhibitions

1. con­cept paper with the fol­lo­wing information:
• Concept descrip­ti­on (max. 800 words)
• Description of own prac­ti­ce (400 words)
• List & info of par­ti­ci­pan­ts to be invi­ted (artists, spea­k­ers with short bio­gra­phy and photo(s) of their work)
2. CV of the con­cept authors
3. bud­get sketch

Application for solo exhi­bi­ti­on (D21/Solo**)
1. artist state­ment on working methods, artis­tic approach, question(s)/works to be shown during the exhi­bi­ti­on (max. 1 page)
2. CV of the con­cept authors
3. port­fo­lio of pre­vious­ly rea­li­sed works in PDF for­mat with meaningful texts and images
4. bud­get sketch

Please send ever­y­thing in one com­ple­te PDF (no indi­vi­du­al pages) (max. 10 pages; data volu­me max. 12MB) or use a per­ma­nent­ly usable down­load link; plea­se pro­vi­de time-based media such as video/sound exclu­si­ve­ly as a link (do not send ori­gi­nal files!)). The rea­li­sa­ti­on of the pro­ject is sub­ject to fun­ding. Submissions can be sent in German or English to: by 31.05.2024. The sel­ec­tion is made by the D21 advi­so­ry board.

**With the D21/Solo format, D21 would like to give one artist/artist group the opportunity to deal with the theme of the year in a solo exhibition.
The call for entries is aimed at artists of all ages who live in Central Germany (Saxony, Saxony-Anhalt, Thuringia) and have completed an academic artistic
training or can show in their portfolio several years of activity in artistic work as well as in exhibition practice.
The exhibition includes curatorial support, production and fee costs, travel and transport costs as well as a catalogue, which will be developed individually
with the artist in accordance with the work.