August 14 – 19, 2017

Department of Applied Music

Bill Dietz, Janina Janke & Julie Rüter

Among the original departments of the Bauhaus, music was not included. Rumored considerations of such a department (e.g. under the direction of Josef Matthias Hauer) aside, more fundamental questions regarding the position of music in relation to “applied arts” remain until this day unresolved. From the Gebrauchsmusik of Paul Hindemith to the fascist instrumentalization of music in the thought of Heinrich Besseler to the commercially and industrially oriented contemporary academic departments of “angewandte Musik,” the horizon of thought surrounding the “use” of music remains highly limited, bound to a normative model of what music can be and what music can do.

In the speculative pursuit of what a Bauhaus “Department of Applied Music” could have been had it dealt with and thought the musical as radically as it did other disciplines, the course retraces various trajectories of musical and sonic experimentation that probe the question of music’s mediation of art and life, its “function.”
The course is directed at musicians and non-musicians alike, with no technical prerequisites. Rather, the more interdisciplinary the group of participants the better. As the course programmatically seeks to complicate the theory/practice distinction, theorists and scientists are as welcome as art practioners. The specific experiential knowledge of all participants is crucial to our understanding of the co-conditioning of theory and practice.
More specifically, the course will turn on the re-contextualized performances of particular moments of the 20th-century sonic avant-garde from Soviet amateur noise orchestras to John Cage, both inside and outside the Bauhaus Bundesschule. On the basis of the shared experience of re-creating such works on site, new and situation-specific sonic formats utilizing all available contemporary technologies will be developed with students.

Booking is closed

Bill Dietz (*1983) For the past 10 years, Bill Dietz has pursued music composition not as the arrangement of sounds, but as the coordination and distribution of listening. Together with Janina Janke, he created large-scale sound installations in Le Corbusier’s Unités d’habitation in Berlin and Marseille, as well as the participatory work Musterhaus in an empty department store (Neues Kaufhaus Held) in Leipzig.

The work of both Janina Janke and Julie Rüter are concerned with urban social and spatial transformation. From 2016 – 2018 Janke and Rüter are leading “ANKOMMEN bauen wohnen leben”, an examination of four architectural phenomena in the city of Bernau, funded by the Fonds Stadtgefährten of the Kulturstiftung des Bundes.

Together with Bill Dietz, an iteration of this project to be presented in Fall 2017 will occur on the campus of the Bauhaus Bundesschule Bernau.