Conscious Inability – the Gabriele Stötzer Archive is an exhibition, research and mediation project in three parts. The walk-in archive presents Stötzer’s artistic practice in the context of the GDR in the 1980s, and invites visitors to take part in an active discussion.
The archive shows a changing selection of Stötzer’s artworks in conjunction with documentary material collected by the artist herself, positioning her practice, mostly of a collective nature, within a body of work created by female artist groups and protagonists from Erfurt’s subcultural scene in the social context of the late GDR.
The title Conscious Inability – a quote by Stötzer – refers in this context to the strategic infiltration of social and artistic norms.
Based on her own artistic practice, the artist Paula Gehrmann develops spatial installations that react to Stötzer’s works and enter into a dialogue with them. At the same time, they comment on and expand the conception of the archive.
The first two parts of the project were concerned with the essence of archives, the mechanisms of attribution and classification, and subsequently with the relationship between state surveillance and the development of alternative artistic and social spaces for action.
The third part highlights forms of working together. The focus is on cooperative and collective working practices and operating in networks, along with the importance of friendship in artistic practice, both in the recent past and the present day.
In the accompanying and mediation programmes, various social actors explore the archive, opening up their own perspectives on the material presented. Discussions are held on the significance of Stötzer’s activity in the present day.
In Cooperation with Leibniz-Institut für Geschichte und Kultur des östlichen Europa (GWZO)