From 2023, the founder of SAVVY Contemporary, Prof. Dr. Bonaventure Soh Bejeng Ndikung, will be the new director of the Haus der Kulturen der Welt (HKW). Now SAVVY Contemporary is looking for a new director.
Image above: courtesy of S A V V Y Contemporary
Since its inception in 2009, SAVVY Contemporary has strived to provide a platform for critical thinking and a space for conviviality that engages in the cultivation of relationships and mutual care. As a space for communities and a (para-)institution in constant becoming, SAVVY Contemporary positions itself at the threshold of notions and constructs of the West and non-West, primarily to understand and negotiate between them, and of course to deconstruct the ideologies and connotations attached to such constructs.
“We experimented with multiple formats and radically engaged with perspectives of epistemological diversity, the colonial invention of science, decanonisation, unlearning, rehearing, participation, solidarity, ‘ultra-reason’ and radical love.”SAVVY Contemporary
Over the past 12 years, a kaleidoscope of art exhibitions, performances, film screenings, lectures, concerts, readings, talks, exercises and publications have been realised in and through this space. SAVVY Contemporary has established a participatory archive of German colonial history (Colonial Neighbours), an archive of performative practices, a documentation centre for experimental and historical publishing practices, a residency programme, a series of SAVVY publications, a record label (SAVVY records) and the radio platform SAVVYZΛΛR, and is in the process of exploring alternative concepts of “technologies” and “economies” as well as different pedagogical practices.
The space addresses a broad spectrum ranging from the history of the neighbourhood to the socio-political realities and urgencies of the world. SAVVY Contemporary has worked nationally and internationally with its own projects and in collaboration with documenta 14, Dak’Art Biennale, Venice Biennale, House of World Cultures, Picha Lubumbashi, Berlin International Film Festival, MaerzMusik/Berliner Festspiele, Bamako Encounters International Biennale of Photography, ParaSite Hong Kong, Jameel Arts Center, among others.
The future director will work with a team of about 20 people and in close collaboration with the co-directors and the core team of SAVVY Contemporary.
“We see the strength of SAVVY Contemporary in both the conceptual and physical axes of our practice. At a time when the world faces challenges that threaten the plurality of cultures, languages, cosmologies, ecologies, economies, as well as life itself, we hold to the belief that ‘another knowing and another way of being is possible’ and strive to use art and culture as a tool and method to design, negotiate and promote other imaginative worlds that actively resist imperialism, colonialism, racism, sexism, capitalism and othering in general.”SAVVY Contemporary
SAVVY Contemporary invites the director to take responsibility for artistic vision, leadership and co-management, to develop and implement long-term exhibitions and other programmes, and to engage with the communities around and within SAVVY Contemporary. An understanding of digital transformations would be an added advantage. The Director will work closely, horizontally and inspirationally with the team and its communities to develop a strategic and sustainable institution that is responsive to and grounded in the plural societies in which SAVVY Contemporary is located. The Director will focus on fundraising to ensure the financial stability and future prospects of SAVVY Contemporary.
The position requires a profound knowledge of and experience with German socio-political and cultural contexts, proficiency in the German language, and a deep and sound understanding of worlds outside the West.
An international jury of artists, curators and experts will be responsible for the selection process and the appointment of the new director.
SAVVY Contemporary offers a 2-year contract with the possibility of renewal.
You explain why you fit the job description and a proposal for your vision for at least the next two years (max. 2 DIN A4 pages). Please also attach a CV and links to relevant work (max. 2 DIN A4 pages). We accept applications in English or German, but also in other (preferably) non-colonial languages. Please send the application in one file (max. 5 MB) by May 6th 2022 to firstname.lastname@example.org.
SAVVY Contemporary | The laboratory of form-ideas was founded in 2009 by Dr Bonaventure Soh Bejeng Ndikung as an art space, a platform for discourse, a meeting place for good conversation, food and drink – a place of communal hospitality. SAVVY locates itself on the threshold between concepts of the West and non-West to understand and deconstruct them. It has undertaken a variety of projects – exhibitions, performances, film screenings, lectures, concerts, readings, discussions, dance. SAVVY Contemporary has built a participatory archive of German colonial history, as well as a documentation centre for performance art, a library and a residency programme. The art space cooperates with schools in educational projects and engages with the history and socio-political realities of its neighbourhood, which are closely intertwined with the project’s reflections and discourses.
S A V V Y Contemporary
Reinickendorfer Straße 17