Public drawing, February 27 – March 1, 2018, 2 till 6 p.m.
Discussion, March 2, 2018, 3 till 6 p.m.The illustrator Jan Stöwe will expand his project A Pacifist Workshop live at Tieranatomisches Theater. The large-format installation weaves well-krnown motifs and protagonists into a large tableau of European’s cultural history. The central topic is a replica of the throne of King Minos of Knossos, which got to the International Court of Justice in The Hague in 1913, as a gift from the Greek government. The illustration traces the political, mythological and cultural implications of its significance in modern times and today.
The story of the throne of Minos reveals the political »agency« of archaeological objects in modern times. This replica symbolizes the area of tension in a forming Europe, national military interests on one hand and the emerging peace movement on the other.
A copy of the Throne of Minos is in the Peace Palace in The Hague, the seat of the International Court of Justice since 1945. It was given to the Carnegie Foundation by the Greek government in 1913, as part of the Gifts of the Nations for the Peace Palace - »in remembrance of King Minos as a just judge«, as it is still said today. According to the myth Minos was the judge of the underworld and the founder of natural law theory after the end of his life as the ruler of Crete. The connection of this mythological narrative with the founding phase of the International Court of Justice creates a bridge between the ancient understanding of law and the modern age.
The donation also emphasized the historical and cultural identity of Greece and Crete. Crete was united with Greece in 1913 by the Treaty of London. By installing the myth of Minos at the Peace Palace, Greece – cultural cradle of Europe – consolidated its political participation. The throne replica from Crete could have been a symbol of a peaceful past by reminding about the supposedly matriarchal and peaceful society of the Minoan civilization.
The interdisciplinary curatorial team of the exhibition Replica Knowledge. An Archeology of the Multiple Past
(Felix Sattler, Dr. Anna Simandiraki-Grimshaw, Konrad Angermüller) has explored the history of the throne copy. Jan Stöwe has extended this knowledge with his own research to illustrate it in the installation A Pacifist Workshop
. In various techniques and materials, he weaves well-known motifs and protagonists into a large tableau of European’s cultural history. Motifs from the Cretan Bronze Age such as the Minotaur, Icarus or the Snake Goddess meet political players such as Bertha von Suttner or Eleftherios Venizelos, scientists such as Arthur Evans as well as modern tourists.
From the 27th of February till the 1st of March, from 2 till 6 p.m., Jan Stöwe will be adding new elements to his installation in a drawing laboratory, live, and open to talk about his work with interested visitors. On the 2nd of March, from 3 till 6 p.m., Jan Stöwe and the curator Felix Sattler will discuss about the potentials of artistic research in museums.