A celebration of curiosity, empathy and justice

It seemed to her like the happy ending of a Hollywood movie. Now she is curious to see what happens next, said Lisa Marei Schmidt, commenting on the “Museum of the Year 2023” award with which the German section of the international critics association Aica honored her museum. The art historian has been director of the Brücke Museum in Berlin for seven years, and since then she has led many debates, for example about the research into expressionism during the Nazi era or the Brücke artists’ attitude to colonialism.

It is not exhaustion but determination for future conflicts that can be heard from the energetic director, who next wants to push through the extension of Berlin’s smallest state museum with its most famous collection.

This is exactly what the art critics’ award has in mind when it selects the exhibition of the year and the special exhibition: encouragement, strength, support. Aica President Kolja Reichert called the award a celebration of curiosity, empathy and justice.

The other prize winners also came to the event at the Brücke Museum, which was followed by the summer party in the garden of the Kunsthaus: Susanne Pfeffer, the director of the Frankfurt Museum of Modern Art, with her curator, whose show “Amt 45 i” was awarded the title of “Special Exhibition” by Cameron Rowland. And the team from the Leipzig Museum of Fine Arts, which was awarded the title of “Exhibition of the Year” for “Re-Connect. Art and Struggle in Brotherland”.

Culture Senator Joe Chialo was visibly proud of the recognition for the Brücke Museum, which was the first museum in Berlin to receive this title. And he is said to have reacted positively to Kolja Reichert’s initiative. In his speech, Reichert suggested that he establish a Berlin critics’ prize, perhaps named after Max Osborn, the former president of the Association of German Art Critics, who had to flee the Nazis in 1938 and died in American exile in 1946.

Reichert’s passionate speech in support of art criticism in times of mutual distrust was infectious. “We need trust,” said the Aica president. “Criticism creates trust. Criticism can hold society together.”

By Editor

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