Curator Jürgen Bock is one of my longest standing ‘clients’, with our communication and collaboration going back to the late 1990s. In 2020-21 I worked with him on a really interesting book project that looks at Maumaus – the art school of which Jürgen has been director since the early 1990s, and which is the focus point in his practice-based research – literally as an ‘object’ by way of a series of reflexive essay by a series of writers who have all taught at the school at some stage.
The book follows an exhibition with the same title – ‘Parting with the Bonus of Youth – Maumaus as Object’ – which Jürgen co-curated with Simon Thompson. Functioning as ‘both a primer and a form of documentation’ – an approach that resonates with my interest in how publications are part of curatorial practice – the book brings together essays by Stefanie Baumann, Filip De Boeck, Sabeth Buchmann, Avery F. Gordon, Tobi Maier, Manuela Ribeiro Sanches, Gertrud Sandqvist, Alberto Toscano, Giovanbattista Tusa and Emily Wardill, alongside visual and textual material from the exhibition. Together they are an attempt to render notions of pedagogic complexity visible by negotiating the terms of art, education and the exhibition as medium itself. The book was designed by Arne Kaiser, with whom Jürgen has collaborated for a long time too.