Put Your Heads Together!

About the cooperation between the Muthesius University of Fine Arts and Design and the Cluster of Excellence "The Future Ocean"

The Muthesius University of Fine Arts and Design is the only art university nationwide which has been an active cooperation partner in two Clusters of Excellence for many years. The collaboration with "The Future Ocean" is a unique characteristic of both the art university and the Cluster of Excellence. Therefore, we are looking forward to continuing our participation in the Cluster of Excellence with the artistic research of our excellent study programs. We are looking forward to reciprocal gains in knowledge! The artistic approach is reflected in the interaction with natural science as a seismograph, which creates a particular point of view of familiar considerations. Ultimately it is about the identity and the difference between science and art. This is where, the specific potential for insight of artistic productivity comes into effect: Art itself thinks, with their own tools. And so we think and ask questions in a new manner; questions which could not have been asked in this way in the natural sciences. Of course, research operates in different fields. Diverse disciplines are the basic elements of a successful collaboration; they just should not remain separated. Real collaboration must interweave adjacent elements into a network. Only then new thinking can arise. Soley in this manner the treasures of the sea can be uncovered. Thus (and with a small wink of the eye), our cooperation is dedicated to Friedrich Schiller's credo from his preface to the literary journal "Horen" (1795): "In this manner, one believes oneself to be contributing to the removal of the wall, which separates the beautiful world from that of the scholars to the disadvantage of both, to introduce detailed thorough knowledge into societal life, and taste into science." Roland Barthes describes this in a similar way in his text to "Young Researchers" – and goes one step further: "The often addressed interdisciplinarity does not consist in contrasting already existing disciplines (of which, basically, none is willing to submit itself). If you want to pursue interdisciplinarity, it is not sufficient to take a 'topic' and to summon two or three sciences for this purpose. Interdisplinarity consists of creating a new object which does not belong to anyone." In short: Cooperation is the first virtue of the researcher with regard to such a complex question as the ocean. The present is no longer the time of the isolated researcher who descends into the basement and re-emerges with a Nobel Prize. We still need scholars and ingenious minds, but we have to put the heads together! 


Dr. Arne Zerbst 

Muthesius University of Fine Arts and Design

Muthesius University of Fine Arts and Design

Founded in 2005, the Muthesius University of Fine Arts and Design in Kiel is Germany's northernmost and youngest school of higher education devoted to the systematic study of art and design. The main goal of the Muthesius University in Kiel is to promote art, design and spatial strategies via research and development projects as a focal point for work and intellectual debates. As the only art university in the State of Schleswig-Holstein, the Muthesius is not only a place to develop culturally relevant biographies but with its project studies also a place of particular experimentation and realisation. To a certain extent, the Muthesius Universities master's
programme offers courses and development opportunities for students that are unique in Germany. Around 580 study places are spread across the study courses in Fine Arts, Fine Arts for Secondary School Teachers, Spatial Strategies, Communication Design and Industrial Design. 


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