DAD presents at Tage der Utopie in Breklum, Germany


We were delighted by the invitation to present our talk, Bridging Division – Living one’s practice, at the Tage der Utopie, at the Christian-Jensen Kolleg in Breklum, Schleswig-Holstein North Germany, from 4-10 April 2014.

We presented our talk as a performance, taking it in turns to speak and switching between English and German. We shared the two-part evening presentation on Saturday evening (5 April) with Inga Wellmann, who spoke about her local government role with responsibility for fostering the Creative Industries in Hamburg. We spoke after the break and rounded off our performance with a screening of Dominic de Vere’s film: War & Peace which was very well received. On Sunday morning we held a joint workshop. Inga led a question and answer session during which particpants discussed the previous evening’s presentations and we then led on the drawing of a participatory mindmap, with participants mapping their personal and professional connections and statements of intent and/or ideas for future projects or actions, many of which involved the newly made connections between the people in the room.

The speaker line-up for the week-long symposium was excellent and topics covered issues such as “disability-free Europe”, zero-city or even zero-village autarchies, a student:pupil coaching scheme, permaculture and the effort individuals in the developed economies need to make to reduce their own personal CO2 usage. The underlying theme of all the talks was a desire to find solutions to the current economic, social and environmental problems we are facing in ways that allow individuals to lead personally fulfilling, happy and health lives by contributing to greater social well-being and environmental sustainability.

Each talk started and ended with new music: improvisations by the Sonar quartet and a piece composed specially for TDU3 by composer Walter Zimmermann referencing traditional music, as sung, sometimes ‘wrongly’.

As well as going to the talks and workshops, we found time for a trip to the 12-kilometre long, 2-kilometre wide sandy beach at Sankt Peter-Ording and for a short walk in the countryside.

We both enjoyed speaking German, albeit peppered here and there with English, meeting and talking to delegates and contributors of all ages and our hosts, as well as 3 founding members of the original Austrian Tage der Utopie, in a friendly and welcoming environment.

The Tage der Utopie was organised by Fridemann Magarrd, Michale Schaefer, Edda Jones and Jonas Krone.