Sept 9-Oct 17, 2021 – Exhibition: I was a formalist pensioner. An antiopera

Photo: Courtesy Goethe-Institut NY

Goethe-Institut is excited to support Berlin-based actress Susanne Sachsse’s exhibition “I WAS A FORMALIST PENSIONER. AN ANTIOPERA” at Participant Inc. In collaboration with XIU XIU and based on the libretto antioper (1970) by Kurt W. Streubel, the exhibition features an installation with 27 air pressure loudspeakers, video, 40 miniature slide viewers, photos, objects, and paper.

A true story. Formalist! Forbidden! GDR in the 1950s! East German painter and printmaker Kurt W. Streubel (1921-2002) was one of the last members of the Bauhaus. His formalist-abstract images put him in conflict with the cultural politics of his time, which heralded socialist realism as an artistic, civic, and national duty. His formalist art gets labeled cosmopolitan, against the German cultural heritage, and in violation of the national consciousness. Because of a work ban, Streubel demands that the state provide him a formalist pension, a tongue-in-cheek term he coined. The state surprisingly gives in and pays him 200 marks a month for two years. Read More…


When:  09/10-10/17/21
Location: Participant Inc. , 253 East Houston, New York, NY 10002

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