2×2 Outsider Art Forum

From 1 – 4 October 2015, Kunsthaus Kannen in Münster, Germany, hosted the fourth installment of the 2 x 2 forum for Outsider Art. The Forum, which is a combination of an art fair, lectures, workshops and theatre, emerged from the KULTUR project originally sponsored by the EU. It provides the opportunity for galleries, museums, artists and projects working with art, social inclusion and psychiatry to present their programme to others in the sector. The Forum aims to establish a close network for producers, art facilitators and collectors, and to create and encourage discussion around art and marginality. This week’s blog post is a review of the Forum by Lisa Inckmann of the Kunsthaus Kannen.


“The Kunsthaus Kannen, Münster (Germany), had the pleasure of welcoming the participants to the fourth 2×2 Outsider Art Forum from 1 – 4 October. The 20 ateliers, organisations, artists and museums from all over Europe had a chance to share experiences and discuss different topics relating to outsider art. The Forum was incredibly well received, with huge interest from visitors.

With the Forum we provide a European platform for experts and those interested in this type of art to come together and share experiences and practice. This year, we were particularly interested in pursuing the questions ‘what is the current State of the (Outsider-) Art?’ and what this means for the future. The aim was to was to give an audience interested in art an insight into the broad range of German and European works that have been created in the social context of psychiatry and art.

Performance piece ‘Theater im Dorf’ from Mühlheim provided an amazing prelude to the Fair, in front of the magnificent backdrop of the Kunsthaus Kannen building on a sunny autumn day. The concept of the performance was created by art director Lidy Mouw (Amsterdam/Berlin).

One of the exhibiting ateliers

One of the participating ateliers

The first lecture by Professor Hans Körner provided a great introduction to an exhibition at Folkwang Museum Essen, which all the participating studios and organisations visited together. The lecture focused on the artist Adalbert Trillhaase, who has been compared to Henri Rousseau and named as one of the most important German outsider artists. The lecture highlighted the process the artist utilises in his paintings and drawings.

Dr. Thomas Röske, Director of the Prinzhorn Collection, then gave an igniting overview of the curatorial practices used when exhibiting outsider art. He pointed out the different techniques used when presenting outsider art, before looking at what might be more suitable, without simply mirroring the ‘insider’ rules.

One of the participating ateliers

One of the participating ateliers

All in all the art fair got incredibly positive feedback. We look forward to the next 2×2 Forum in 2017!”

Click here for more information on the 2015 2 x 2 Forum

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