A school in the meadow? – In the footsteps of Black Mountain College


USA, North Carolina, 1933: artists, reform pedagogues and teachers from the Bauhaus school found Black Mountain College in the rural idyll of North America. The curriculum focuses on how to better perceive and shape the world. The teachers include Anni and Joseph Albers, John Cage, Merce Cunningham, Robert Rauschenberg, Franz Kline and Richard Buckminster Fuller.

“Gaining experience instead of memorising”

To this day, Black Mountain College provides valuable impulses for the arts and their creative pedagogy. School should be a place that is constantly changing with the teachers and students. It is not just about the absence of constraints; creative teaching and learning should provide space for aesthetic experience.

“The process is the goal”

In 2016, we launched a field trial on the Coop Campus in Hermannstrasse: Together with artists, architects, performers, young gardeners who came to the city as refugees and young people from the neighbourhood, we delved into the questions, concepts and spatial atmospheres of Black Mountain College. Here you can see what came out of it:

The three workshops at a glance:

26.09.-30.09.2016 | Performance Workshop – Theatre Piece No. 1 | Artists: Be van Vark, Fred Gehrig, Alexandre Decoupigny

In the summer of 1952, John Cage staged the first Happening at Black Mountain College with Theatre Piece No. 1. The workshop team has recreated the event based on the improvisation guidelines we are familiar with.

22 Sep – 08 Oct 2016 | Space Sculpture Workshop | Artists: Torsten Holger Schlopsnies and Federica Teti

Young gardeners, students, neighbours and artists use wooden beams to build a spatial sculpture on the garden grounds – based on the serial architectural modules by Richard Buckminster Fuller and the sculptures by Hamburg artist Jan Meyer-Rogge.

08 Oct 2016 + Dec 2016 | Rhythm and sound workshop | Artist: Bastian Hagedorn

Sound explorers stalk through bushes and undergrowth, prick up their ears, record the sounds of nature and the urban environment and use them to create a sound collage.

Flyer to download [german]

in cooperation with:

Funded by:

Image material Header/ Thumbnail: Original postcard with view of the dining hall at the Lake Eden Campus, Black Mountain College. Undated. Released by Emily R. Wood. Courtesy of the Western Regional Archives / “Black Mountain College 1935-1936”, Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Centre Collection, D. H. Ramsey Library Special Collections, UNC Asheville.