End the jubilee consensus in the Bauhaus year! Schorsch Kamerun is burying the art school in a play – and explains why the most radical art likes to end up on RTL 2.
Schorsch Cameroon is back after a long time with the Golden lemons on tour – the punk band he founded in 1984 and whose singer he is today. In June, at the Berliner Volksbühne, "The Bauhaus – A Salvation Requiem" will be given its world premiere, for which he is responsible. A conversation about why you have to bury the Bauhaus to save it – during the break of the soundcheck.
SZ: What will become the "saving requiem"?
Schorsch Cameroon: I have been making walk-in concert installations for a couple of years, mostly on current topics, most recently at the Theater Basel and sometimes a concertante Peter-Handke-arrangement. That works quite well. Now the order "Bauhaus" was already set at the Volksbühne, even from the Dercon period. Klaus Dörr, current director, asked me if I could imagine anything. So now I approach the basic questions of Bauhaus. We play this throughout the house.
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What are the basic questions?
We refer to our approach as a requiem, that is to say as a concession, because we first have to free ourselves from the canon of the all-embracing "100th anniversary of the Bauhaus" jubilee. We hope to be able to look more unimpressed on the radical initial visions of the moderns of that time. We are annoyed by the cheering consensus, apparently everyone thinks it's great, can stand behind a German flagship phenomenon that has swarmed so wonderfully brand-fit into the world. Me creeps in there Rammstein– if you are more friendly, one power plant-Feeling.
Let's take power plant.
Yes, probably fits better, because Kraftwerk is indeed a fine aesthetic messenger with an unconditional claim to modernity, on the one hand cold Prussian, but in it with atypical unreal melancholy. But that's not the case with Bauhaus. Much more universal here was a comprehensive artistic-humanistic investigation of existence in a deeply failed environment, a Europe in the dust. The mood at the time was a complete exception: departure and Dadaism, anarchism and ideology, poets who ruled Bavaria, the "new man" and so on. Until the eternal normers took out their antiprogressive turnpikes. But first of all was enthusiastic, proverbial testing.
Yes, that's nice, but at some point every time, those who want to read the set-up come to run well-exportable historic preservation.
What bothers you about that?
Shortening, "packing". I find that miserable. And that one speaks so sacredly. Although – and this is no secret – representatives of the Bauhaus have at least collaborated, even in the Third Reich.
In Italy, even more than in Germany, there is a permeable border between the architecture of modernity and that of fascism.
Absolute. But here, too, can be traced back that the Bauhaus related parties, for example, designed KZ barracks.
What is little known.
Nothing so great is only commendable! Bauhaus is not only the great "mixed radical", or the handsome "simply reduced". Already with the three principal directors, strong differences can be seen. And felt like a fluttering every day a new interpretation in: "Gropius made no distinction between students and masters," next he is perceived as extremely "authoritarian-selfish". Hard to keep it clean. Nevertheless, it remains a fascination.
For you too?
I like to see Bauhaus as a factory, which tried to combine something that was incompatible with great diversity in a single place. At which one wanted to design socially from music, dance and architecture, from handicraft and free, discursive art experiments. That's great! I think that even today's theaters in the middle of the cities should make such claims much more offensive. At Bauhaus, I believe that you have to be careful not to constantly drag the everlasting world hit to the stage, this is a dull and deadly museum.
Does it matter that the Bauhaus wanted to create good design for the masses, meanwhile, a Marcel Breuer chair is an expensive object in upper middle-class apartments?
That's often like that. The most radical art likes to end up in the museum, in a luxury department store or on RTL 2. This tyranny of authorship, the greed for the original, that really hurts me. I feel a real disgust when I come to these great apartments, and then there is this great stuff around. That murdered each other to stone. Nevertheless, I would accept gifts from the field ..
You might even like a few things yourself.
Already, but would you really put that down? One has taste, presents something valuable and at the same time generously knowing? Incidentally, I do not think that's exactly what happens when you're in formal positions. Naughty thesis: It's masculine. Here is also battlet, who brings out the coolest stuff.
So there was a lot of male fuss at the Bauhaus back then?
Well, not so much, considering how much women were involved in the Bauhaus. And then again, how it went on, that especially agile males have taken care of what you should and should not have. In the architectural designs, in Tel Aviv, in Stuttgart, wherever, the Bauhaus and similar designs may be better to experience. The idea of an attractive coexistence remains yes.
The houses are better than things?
Unfortunately, they have become something of a taste. Ironically, because they are so forward-looking.
In addition, most of the seating is uncomfortable. You do not want to sit on them, they fulfill a sculptural task.
I do not know, I'm almost teenage skeptical. I am impressed by the nice coolness, but the professional rigor scares me.
What is the most important legacy of the Bauhaus?
It should be understood that Bauhaus and others were an important counterpart to militarism and simplistic populism. At the same time, the Third Reich was formed and with its rigid expansion of power gradually intervened in everything that wanted to be "different". This is already a parallel to today, where backward-looking politics increasingly co-determine, want to interfere with artistic orientations, applications are made, with which the promotion of unpleasant projects should be prevented. Because of these parallels, the Bauhaus must mean something to it and be reminded of its overall progressive intervention.