Verdana, 12 pt

Verdana, 12pt / 2008

Oder: Wie rund ist ein Rundgang? (“Or: how round is a round tour?”)

The annual open day presentation of the artistic output of art schools – labeled ‘Rundgang’ (literally ‘round tour’) at the HGB – is a ritual that can be chiefly understood as a type of rehearsal, which makes the results of teaching accessible to a broader public. Recent developments in the art system, particularly regarding its commercialisation, have brought the leipzig-based school to the centre of attention in the past years- an issue which has become increasingly significant and controversial within the HGB. Not only because arts-interested locals visit the school during these four days, but equally because the academy plays host to a wider international public. In this way, the event has abandoned its original character as the site for artistic experimentation, and is increasingly turning into a type of Mega-Exhibition, displaying similar features to that of an art fair.

This issue is most apparent in the fact that the academy is temporarily transformed into a conglomerate of “white cubes” by removing the furniture from rooms which are originally intended for teaching and research, and submitting them more or less to intrusive plaster and construction work, so that the output of the individual classes may be presented in a neutral, gallery-like situation. “Everything must go!” seems to be the canon echoing through the academy in the days prior to the Rundgang. “So where do you put the chairs, tables, coat racks, computers, monitors, cabinets and work materials?”

This question was seen as a potential and put to use: The Intermedia Class offered to store all the unwanted furniture of the HGB for the duration of the Rundgang. A walkable, space-encompassing sculpture was created from the various objects, bringing into focus the lack of space, making a reference to the actual usage of the academy, and sending the visitors on an exploration where fragments from all departments of the academy could be found.

Video Works

On the other side, the title of the work “Verdana, 12pt” was written. This title may be seen as the third and concluding element of the work as part of the Rundgang project: all students and classes of the HGB were asked to title their works with the Verdana typeface size 12pt for the open day show. The title of the class project was however set at a much larger font size than 12 pt, bringing once again the underlying structures of the Rundgang to attention.

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Verdana, 12 pt, #1, Stefan Hurtig

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Verdana, 12 pt, #2, Alba D’Urbano

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Verdana, 12 pt, #3, Franz Alken