Seeing Differently. Understanding One Another.
“Shifting Points of View” is an education initiative intended to support thinking and acting in a way that promotes democracy – through an ever-expanding art education programme consisting of discursive guided tours, digital offers, practical art seminars, workshops and much more.
“The museum is a place for both art and debate. Larger political and social correlations can always be found in art.”Philipp Demandt, Director Städel Museum
Knowing what is, what has been, and what might come, forming opinions, and engaging in debate and discourse in order to foster a lively democratic culture is at the heart of a major cultural education initiative by the Städel Museum titled “Shifting Points of View. Seeing Differently. Understanding One Another.”
Building on the understanding that a museum is a place for diverse social aspects of life, for years the Städel Museum has been developing audience-oriented art education that reflects the times.
Shifting Points of View is intended to support thinking and acting in a way that promotes democracy. It allows historical developments and processes that have shaped the social value system of freedom and democracy to be impressively retraced through active engagement with artworks at the Städel Museum.
The works in the collection from 1300 to the present encompass a wide range of subject matter, telling stories that include topics such as globalisation, resistance, utopia, emancipation, power, oppression, and populism.
Within the framework of the education initiative “Shifting Points of View” an ever-expanding art education programme will be created, consisting of various new formats targeted to a broad audience, such as discursive guided tours, digital offers, practical art seminars and workshops, and specific continuing and advanced training courses.
Themes and content that promote democracy are already being addressed in numerous current outreach offers. Encountering and engaging with art fosters cultural participation and empowers viewers to help actively shape a diverse democratic society. With “Shifting Points of View”, the Städel Museum is also explicitly addressing day-care centres, schools, and adult education institutions.
Important components of the education initiative are the teaching of skills about how to deal with the flood of digital information and images, the acquisition of intercultural competencies, the learning of multi-perspective viewpoints, and encouraging sensitivity to language usage. The focus is on the concept of visual literacy – that is to say, the ability to learn to read images and to train mechanisms of visual communication.
Based on the “Shifting Points of View” project, a diversified education programme is being developed for children, teens, and adults: dialogue-based guided tours, interdisciplinary discussions, and practical art exercises, especially in pre-school and school education sectors. The Städel Museum’s education initiative addresses those who will shape tomorrow’s society and reaches out to them during the most formative phase of their development.
As an internal and external education initiative, “Shifting Points of View” also connects institutional players in Frankfurt’s urban society: the Städel Museum staff, freelance art educators, disseminators from the fields of education and social work, as well as a partner network of leading cultural and educational institutions, including the Jewish Museum Frankfurt, the Weltkulturenmuseum, the Historical Museum Frankfurt, the Anne Frank Educational Centre, beramí e. V., and the Federal Agency for Civic Education.
The aim is to exchange experiences, ideas, and formats for contemporary education and outreach work and to draw on specialist expertise.
In addition, the Städel Museum is a partner of the initiative TheMuseumsLab – a forward-thinking programme for joint learning and knowledge exchange for young museum professionals that brings together staff from Africa and Europe in various courses and training stations. TheMuseumsLab sees itself as a platform for learning, exchange, and professional development.