change of perspective
Disruption - everything at the beginning
Felix Jung and Marc Einsiedel have been active as artistic duo wearevisual in Hamburg since 2010. With interventions in public space they want to shake people up - and often question everything from the root. This ability is also a sought-after competence where innovations are thought of and developed together from the outset: in the Cross Innovation Lab.
In start-up jargon, one speaks of disruptions when an innovation turns an entire industry upside down and overtakes existing business models. Can this definition be applied to your work?
Felix: I think the term can be interpreted in terms of our work - although it is more likely a radical change of perspective that we are aiming to achieve. We want to draw people's attention to current developments and make them think. In one of our more recent projects, for example, we mapped 160,000 square meters of wasteland in downtown Hamburg and showed parts of the fences in an exhibition. The visitors were then supposed to walk through the city from a different perspective.
Marc: A disruption describes the intervention and the turnaround in a process. There are parallels to our works. But our way of working is quite different. We are completely free in our work. We constantly change the implementation, the materials or the concept - this is an incremental process.
Felix: You can't do anything right or wrong in art. If you work freely in front of yourself, if one step always builds on the next, then such reversals do not come about at all. It's different from the business world.
In addition to your artistic work, you also advise companies, for example with regard to team dynamics or their external image. What competencies do you contribute in this context?
Felix: We claim to think freely, to undermine things, to open up new perspectives. We don't know any stupid questions and simply question everything.
Marc: Our quality consists in confronting companies with who or what they actually are. This is our disruptive intervention. In Cross Innovation Lab, for example, we worked with company employees who didn't even know who they were at first. This was then completely reflected in the external perception of the company. At first, the employees didn't understand what we meant at all. We then started all over again and worked on who they were and what they did.
What does it mean to start all over again?
Felix: The first challenge is to find a common language. The employees express themselves with technical terms, some of which we don't understand at all. Basically, we all speak the same language, but the names of the individual processes and products are different. That has to be reset to zero first.
Marc: The way we work is often very different, too. We are not used to a precise schedule, to breaks having to be adhered to. We are completely focused on achieving a result. Here, too, you have to come together.
What language do you speak in your artistic work?
Felix: I have a current example of this: the City Courtyards are an important part of Hamburg's post-war architecture. When it became apparent that the demolition plans would become reality, we turned the "departure into modernity" - this was the slogan of the 1950s - into the "demolition of modernity" and stapled this message to the façade in metre-high letters. That was broken down into very clear language, everyone understood that.
Many thanks for the interview!
Since 2010 Felix Jung ( *1985) and Marc Einsiedel ( *1983) have been working together in Hamburg as an artist duo under the name wearevisual. With their method of working they try to analyze different aspects of public space artistically, in order to infiltrate differences with the process of adding, misusing and recycling. They document absurdities and seemingly trivial things in order to refer to larger contexts. They develop installative, material-oriented works as well as performative works and have already realized projects in international cities such as Cape Town, St. Petersburg, Buenos Aires, London Nairobi, Jaipur and Mumbai.
Über das Cross Innovation Lab
Im Herbst 2019 setzen wir ein experimentelles Format fort, das Synergien und bislang ungenutzte Innovationspotentiale in der temporären Zusammenarbeit von Entwickler-Teams aus der Industrie und hochqualifizierten Spezialistinnen und Spezialisten aus der Kreativwirtschaft zugänglich macht: das Cross Innovation Lab. Für eine Dauer von sechs Wochen (Mitte Oktober bis Anfang Dezember 2019) entsteht eine mit Prototyping-Werkzeug ausgestattete Workshop- und Ausstellungsfläche. Hier gehen interdisziplinäre Teams die Innovationsvorhaben oder -bedarfe der Industrie an.