Virtual conference, June 17 and 18, 2020
Hosts: Ursula Ströbele (Study Center for Modern and Contemporary Art at Zentralinstitut für Kunstgeschichte, Munich) / Susanne Witzgall (cx centre for interdisciplinary studies, Academy of Fine Arts Munich)


To participate, please register via e-mail by June 15th at Diese E-Mail-Adresse ist vor Spambots geschützt! Zur Anzeige muss JavaScript eingeschaltet sein!(subject: “Without Measure”) and we will send you an access link and further information.


The word ‘excess’ comes from the Latin verb ‘excedere,’ meaning ‘to step outside, to go beyond something.’ Whether something is perceived as excess depends on cultural-social and historical normative frameworks. Yet excess implies not only the transgression of orders of values, but also of ecological, social, and human capacities, and suggests immoderateness, insatiability, lack of restraint, debauchery, or deviation. Today our reality seems to be saturated by various excesses: exaggerated increases in efficiency, the unrestrained consumption and squandering of resources in the modern economy, the verbal excesses of politics, the research-based excesses of the production and modularization of artificial life, and the algorithmic excesses of an increasingly wired and digitalized world are just a few 21st century examples of this phenomenon, which often has a negative connotation. At the same time, play with and the transgression of limits as anthropological constants entices us with its promise of transcendent experience, the liberation from social constraints, and creative flights of fancy. The term ‘excessive’ can be used to describe a dimension of experience or perception, a stylistic criterion, or a practice that crosses borders. Excesses have traditionally always been at home in visual art, given that they often operate beyond social etiquette and norms, evoking states of euphoria and intoxication, but also critically reflecting on economic and sociopolitical conditions.


The symposium “Ohne Maß? Exzess(e) in der zeitgenössischen Kunst” (Without Measure? Excess[es] in Contemporary Art) aims to explore how the art of the 21st century has confronted the theme of “excess.” How do current art practices approach this ambivalent phenomenon at a time when new excessive modes of behavior and processes are emerging, or at any rate seem to be increasingly coming to the fore? This symposium is dedicated to excess as a multilayered object of artistic investigation, but also as an artistic strategy for the creative transgression of boundaries and resistant practice. In connection with the 2019/20 theme of “excess” at the cx center for interdisciplinary studies, the symposium is a cooperation between the cx center for interdisciplinary studies at the Academy of Fine Arts, Munich, and the Study Center for Modern and Contemporary Art at the Central Institute for Art History, Munich. Lectures and Discussions will be in English.


Wednesday, June 17, 2020


1:30 pm
Welcome and Introduction
Ursula Ströbele and Susanne Witzgall


2:00–4:00 pm
Panel 1: Excessive Art?


Wouter Davidts (Gent)
Out of Scale. Excessive Size in Contemporary Sculpture


Dominik Brabant (Eichstätt-Ingolstadt)
Excesses of the real? Christoph Büchel’s Barca Nostra and art criticism


4:00–4:30 pm
Coffee Break


4:30–6:30 pm
Panel 2: Excessive Esthetic and (Queer) Identities


Julia Skelly (Montreal)
Interrogating Art History’s Excesses: Mickalene Thomas and Queer Black Decadence


Daniel Berndt (Berlin/Zürich)
More than Extra – Drag and Queer Identities in Ryan Trecartin’s and Lizzy Fitch’s Video Works


Thursday, June 18, 2020


10.30 am–12.30 pm
Panel 3: Art and the Excess of Objects


Rahma Khazam (London/Paris)
On Objects and their Excesses


André Rottmann (Berlin)
Another Vision of Excess: The Case of Cameron Rowland


12.30 pm–1:30 pm


1:30 pm–3:30 pm
Panel 4: Accumulation and Excesses of Information in the Arts


Elisa Linseisen (Paderborn)
Digital | Monumental. Excessive Data Processing in the Work of Ryoji Ikeda


Serena De Dominicis (Rome)
Excess. Art Faced to the Productivist Economic Model


3:30 pm–4:00 pm
Final Discussion