On Art und Netart in Frankfurt 1996 - 2002

Nothing new in the east...

Posted by Stefan Beck on Monday, May 20, 1996
Like at New York there are now serious considerations about shutting down the THE THING BBS structure here at Frankfurt. One reason is the very shy user activity for which we can name no single reason, the other is the fact that the longtime host of TT, Andreas Kallfelz from 707, seeks to try with other business resulting from the severe exhaustions suffered from his longtime engagement in the local art scene.
The question is how this could have happen, and form the several possible rejections I´d like to pick out this one, before it gets firm here.

It is this well-known: "Well, you can never achieve anything here in Frankfurt, there is nobody, there is nohing running, nothing will grow, you´ll give up anyway etc etc..." That´s, it´s always a nothingness, a vacuum, an emptyness, a desert, an absence to which is constantly referred. Which shall exist here at Frankfurt.

But - we´re still living, aren´t we? How can it be that the two most powerful men of the German art scene, König und Ammann, together with their assistanceship are living in this town? Would that be like this if it was a DESERT? And what about the local art-school, Städel, which produces 10 artists every year. Where are they going?

I´d like to propose that you´ll find as many wise, creative, intellectual people in Frankfurt as in any other town. But why are they that invisible? Is it because of the power? A huge,enormous concentration of power, which, like a black hole, attracts all centrifugal utterances?

Why is there more "goin on" in Berlin and Vienna? Is it because these cities are only mere reprensentative of a pale vanishing world-power, that no real power is any more incorporated into them, whereas the real power is spread over cities like Frankfurt, a "modern service-center" (its own slogan) for banks and advertising agencies. A city which represents the real economical power of a united corporate Europe, which is a real center, while, as told by a wonderful booklet, art and culture find their place and rights at the peripherique and its atmost borders. Is art merely a message from the outskirts of our culture.

The silence of Frankfurt, what does it tell us? Don´t we have to conclude that, like the empty canvas, the white empty space and the silent gallery, the silence of the discourse the extremest symbol of the power means? A power which it crushing on everything? It´s going on, it´s going on all the time in Berlin and Vienna, because the power is gone there for a long long time. You can talk there, you can have discourse (and not intercourse, like a friend of mine argues against Frankfurt) there - because no one´s hurt.

But Frankfurt is like the eye of a thunderstorm, totally filled by a precise and tremendous quitness. It´s silence has long been underestimated.


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Sorry, geht grad nicht.

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