Fernsehgalerie (Television Gallery)
26 March – 11 September 2022 | Beim Stadthaus
On 15 April 1969, at 10.40 p.m., the programme Land Art was broadcast nationwide by the station Freies Berlin. The so-called Fernsehgalerie, an initiative of Gerry Schum (1938–1973), was a pioneering act in the mass medium of television; today it is legendary. At the time, Schum succeeded in winning over the radio station for an extraordinary art project involving eight films with artists such as Richard Long, Walter de Maria and Mike Heizer. However, these were not documentary films about art. Instead, they were works conceived by the artists themselves, which they realised in the medium of film together with Schum and Ursula Wevers. In the period at the end of the 1960s, art changed radically, the relationship between artist and institution was questioned, new channels of mediation were sought. ‘The television gallery is more or less an intellectual institution that becomes reality only at the moment it is broadcast by television. It’s not a place to show tangible art objects that you can buy and take home. One of our ideas is to communicate art instead of owning artworks.’ (Gerry Schum)
The second and last Fernsehgalerie entitled Identifications brought together works by twenty artists; it was broadcast in the late evening of 30 November 1970 by the German public channel ARD. Yet the television gallery was not given a permanent slot on public television. In retrospect, however, his visionary idea and the high quality of the works are astonishing.
Thanks to the permanent loan from the Agnes and Frits Becht Collection, the Kunst Museum Winterthur has almost the entire stock of Gerry Schum’s video production at its disposal.
Curators: Lynn Kost and David Schmidhauser
With kind support