Opening May 8, 2021: A joint project on smell in contemporary art by: GAK Society for Current Art, Gerhard-Marcks-Haus, kek Children’s Museum, Künstlerhaus Bremen, Kunsthalle Bremen, Kunstverein Bremerhaven, Paula Modersohn-Becker Museum, Städtische Galerie Bremen, Weserburg Museum for Modern Art, Center for Artist Publications.

In the context of a delimitation of the boundaries of art, the cooperation aims to counter the increasingly important and, at the same time, little researched discussion of art with smell. The core of the project are ten individual exhibitions, a scientific lecture series and a joint educational program in the period from May to July 2021.

Of particular importance are the contemporary positions on smell that will be exhibited at Städtische Galerie Bremen, in an exhibition titled, Olfaktor: Smell equals presence, curated by Ingmar Lähnemann and Madalina Diaconu. These are the participants:

Esther Adam, Claudia Christoffel, Peter de Cupere (Belgium), Anja Fußbach, Brian Goeltzenleuchter (USA), Bernadette, Barbara Haiduck, Susann Hartmann, Anneli Käsmayr, Laura Pientka, Jana Piotrowski, Mari Lena Rapprich, Anne Schlöpke, Stephan Thierbach, Maki Ueda (Japan), Clara Ursitti (GB), Martin Voßwinkel, Zhé Wang and Doris Weinberger.

The spectrum of odor-related artistic projects of the 19 represented positions is very broad in terms of theme and media. The exhibition contains “smelly” olfactory works of art and works that are used at certain times in such a way that a direct odor level arises, such as through cooking, through roasting, and through aromatherapy consultation. In addition, there are works in the exhibition that only evoke odor in thought or reflect on smelling as a special sensual activity.

A special feature of the “Olfaktor” exhibition is that all works of art are explicitly about smell in contemporary visual art—a topic which has so far been underrepresented in spite of its increasing cultural attention and its persistence in western art history. All the more impressively, Olfactor shows how the Bremen art scene is taking on the subject, and how the Städtische Galerie Bremen recognizes the contributions of international artists Peter de Cupere, Brian Goeltzenleuchter, Maki Ueda and Clara Ursitti, four pioneers of olfactory art.