The Flusser Summer School was initiated as part of our planned celebrations for the 100th birthday of the internationally renowned media philosopher Vilém Flusser on May 12, 2020. This plan needed to be moved online, but this year in 2022 it will take finally place as originally planned in Robion (South of France) where he last lived and wrote his most important works. The sessions will be taught at Flusser’s former residence, in the spaces of the municipality and in a small ancient amphitheater, where lectures, discussions, film viewings and presentations will be held in his honor.
The summer school aims to irreverently acknowledge the significance of Vilém Flusser’s work for the development of media philosophy and media culture history. His reflections on the future of digital culture were prophetic and far ahead of his time. On the occasion of his 102nd birthday, we will explore the relevance of Flusser’s thinking to our understanding of digital culture. The Summer School program will interface with a small festival and symposium culminating on his birthday on May 12th. We will raise questions such as: How can his positions be critically understood today? What premises shaped his thinking? And in which form and medium can critical thinking about and with media be expressed?
Participants will learn the main features of Vilém Flusser’s work in philosophy and media studies. They will become familiar with the procedures and current problems of German media theory and media philosophy, particularly with regard to digital culture. The participants will conclude the summer school by developing and presenting their own projects on the topic of the summer school combining theory and artistic practice.
The summer school curriculum follows the cardinal media Flusser addressed: the traditional image (drawing), writing, and photography, which also point the way to the computerized technical image. Flusser’s future theme was also digital culture and the question of to what extent artists and philosophers can critically and appropriately take part in it with their own projects. This outlines five topics for the summer school, which are to be discussed in theoretical reading seminars as well as in practical artistic exercises: drawing, writing, photography, digital culture and artistic projects.
Since Flusser’s reflections on and with media occurred against the theoretical background of (German) philosophy, this will also be integrated into the course through readings and explications of concepts. A grounded overview of the state of international Flusser research is also part of the curriculum.
The summer school is aimed at Master’s and advanced Diploma students as well as doctorate students from art schools and universities which teach media and cultural studies, media art, philosophy of media and technology, aesthetics, comparative literature or applied cultural studies, image theory, film and design.
A cover letter explaining your motivations (1 page) in German or English is required along with a short CV (maximum 1 page) covering what and where you are studying and your current degree stage (BA, MA, pre-doc). Please send both together in one pdf file by March 6, 2022, to the following address: Richtmeyer@fh-potsdam.de, subject: Flusser Summer School
application deadline: March 6, 2022
Applicants will be selected based on the applications. Acceptance requires the formal qualifications and a convincing motivational letter. Familiarity with the work of Vilém Flusser as well as the German language are considered an advantage. A balance between theoretical interests and practical skills will also be considered positively. Participants should be able to reflect on media with methods from the humanities and also have an interest in reflecting practically on media with media.
Applications will be reviewed by the three organizers together. Only 18 people maximum can be accepted. At least half of the spots are for international applicants. Selection results will be sent out by email on March 15.
Dr. Katerina Krtilova (Zurich), Dr. Baruch Gottlieb (Berlin), Prof. Dr. Ulrich Richtmeyer (Potsdam) have been teaching and researching in media studies for many years at various art schools and universities. They position themselves in the spectrum proposed for the summer school between humanistic theory and artistic practice.
DAAD / Deutscher Akademischer Austauschdienst / German Academic Exchange Service
Teaching will be conducted in English and includes lectures, film presentations, excursions, theoretical and practical work.
Number of participants: 15-18 people, 5 teachers as well as guests.
Arrival on Sunday, May 8, departure on Saturday, May 14, 2022.
Beginning of teaching on Monday, May 9, end of teaching on Friday, May 13.
The teaching events and framework program are free of charge for the selected participants. Catering is offered for the time of the summer school free of charge. Costs for excursions and associated fees are also covered.
Travel to and from Robion and accommodation must be paid by the participants themselves. We can provide assistance in reserving appropriate accommodation.