Exhibition: “Showing what we (don’t) know – Images as research” in the Japanisches Palais

12 October 2023

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From 12 October to 23 November 2023, the Japanisches Palais (Japanese Palace) will house the exhibition “Showing what we (don’t) know – Images as research”. As part of the transcultural academy entitled “Futurities”, which is organized by the Research department at Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden (SKD), 16 students from the “Expanded cinema” class at the College of Printed Graphics and Book Art (HGB) in Leipzig, worked closely with SKD to develop a distinct visual language to represent research activities. The participants pointed their cameras, microphones and notebooks at the Kunstsammlungen and captured something that generally remains unseen behind the museum glass. What images are created as part of the research processes in a museum? What academic work is involved before an exhibition can be opened? How is knowledge visualised in the museum environment? The resulting 16 new works are now being shown in an exhibition.

Over a period of more than one year, the artists met with conservators, electricians, research assistants, directors, x-ray technicians and provenance researchers. The resulting dialogue between the internal and external perspective, between museum academics and artists, is reflected in the new artworks, which include video installations, textiles, an imaginary computer game, transformed angels, AI-generated porcelain and an interview with a revolver.

The aim of this project is to visualise academic activities in museums as a creative process and show the images produced as part of the research work itself. In this way, the exhibition seeks to expand the definition of the museum as place where a variety of stakeholders generate a wide variety of knowledge.

The artworks on display are by Anna Sopova, snc, Ingmar Stange, Johann Bärenklau, Katharina Bayer, Ksenia Bashmakova, Leila Brinkmann, Lucia-Charlotte Ott, Mahshid Mahboubifar, Marta Sundmann, Natalia Zaitseva, Sijo Choi Kim, Simón Jaramillo Vallejo, Valerio de Araújo Silva, Yu-Hsin Su.

The project is a cooperation of the “Expanded cinema” class at HGB Leipzig, represented by Clemens von Wedemeyer and Mareike Bernien, with Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden. The exhibition was curated by Anna-Lisa Reith, a staff member of the SKD Research department.


The Transcultural Academy is a project by the Research department at SKD, in dialogue with all of the SKD collections as well as artists, academic partners, academies of the arts and friends. This year, the Academy is addressing the interplay of future and present in the SKD’s exhibits under the heading “Zukünftigkeiten/Futurities”. From 8 to 11 November 2023, the Assembly School of the Transcultural Academy, parts of which will be open to the public, will take place in the Japanisches Palais. The proceedings will be published. Roughly 30 participants, four mentors and three scholarship recipients from Brazil, Germany, Iran, the Netherlands, Uganda, Ukraine and other countries will take part in the Assembly School. The collections are used as material research repositories, to reflect on current societal and scientific questions, and thus to shape the future.


12 October to 23 November 2023

Opening hours
10 am to 6 pm daily, closed on Monday

Admission free


For reporting purposes, individual guided tours of the exhibition will be provided on request. We also cordially invite media representatives to attend the opening at 6.30 pm on 12 October 2023. To register for this event, please send an e-mail to presse@skd.museum.

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