For a new project proposed for Centrum, From the Aesthetic of Administration, Canadian conceptual artist Joshua Schwebel invited employees of the Berlin arts funding administration, the Senatsverwaltung Kultur und Europa, to propose and realize their own artworks.
The respondents, Pauline Püschel and Anne Wesolek, have each composed works reflecting on their tasks at the Senat and their relationship to art. The exhibition takes its title from Benjamin Buchloh’s seminal article, in which he claims that the aesthetic identity of the middle class is one of administrating labour and production. The resulting exhibition reverses the roles of administrator and producer, delegating the production of artistic content to those who normally manage the financial structures underpinning the production of art. The project invokes questions of how funding initiatives determine artistic activity, as well as how divisions between artistic production and cultural administration establish the value and even status of what is recognizable as art.
Joshua Schwebel is a conceptual artist interested in the division of labour in cultural work, and especially in the bureaucratic activities that predetermine and produce art's visibility. He often works on the border between art and art administration, occupying the positions that invisibly subtend the production of contemporary art. Schwebel’s work has been exhibited and circulated nationally and internationally, and supported by both the Conseil des Arts et des Lettres du Québec and the Canada Council for the Arts. The project realized at Centrum is generously supported by the Canadian Embassy.