With the Flying Artist’s Room, the Crespo Foundation and its partners, the Hessian Ministry of Education and Cultural Affairs and the Hessian Ministry of Science and the Arts, have established a format that promotes cultural development in schools across Hessen and can also be implemented in rural areas in particular.
At the same time, the Flying Artist’s Room supports artists during their time as artist-in-residence as they realise their own art projects and develop their competencies in work with children and young people in a school context. The Crespo Foundation is chiefly operational and in that respect sees itself as an actor who “instigates” and supports successful collaborative partnerships. The Foundation champions the permanent establishment of urgently needed support and funding structures conceived with its partners to serve as models that can be realised elsewhere without requiring any major adaptation.
The Crespo Foundation is a foundation under public law based in Frankfurt am Main that was founded in 2001 by Ulrike Crespo.
“It was important for the Crespo Foundation to create a space conceived entirely with the artist in mind: a space for his or her own artistic evolution and in which to develop and try out new concepts of cultural education in schools.”Prof. Christiane Riedel, Chair of the Crespo Foundation
The Hessian Ministry of Education and Cultural Affairs (HKM)
To give children and young people unfettered access to art, in 2018 the Hessian Ministry of Education and Cultural Affairs launched the Flying Artist’s Room artist-in-residence programme with the Crespo Foundation.
For a whole school year the artist lives and works in a mobile artist’s studio specially designed for this purpose and develops art projects with teachers and students. The studio and the artist’s presence allow an encounter with the arts in day-to-day school life and provide impetus for school development as envisaged by integrated education. During the one-year collaboration, the school can develop teaching models with the artist and change structures to facilitate artistic practice and aesthetic experiences in day-to-day school life even after the Flying Artist’s Room has moved on to another school. Ideally, those creating the art and the school community learn and benefit from one another and provide impetus that is fun, exploits the potential that is already there and continues their interest in the arts – even when the studio heads off elsewhere after a year.
The Hessian Ministry of Education and Cultural Affairs supports the project by accompanying the process. The school is included in a network of culturally active schools that gives them the opportunity to take part in special continuing education formats. Over and above this, it is supported with inset days focusing on culture.
“Interlinking school life and experience of the arts – that is the idea behind it and is what makes the project so special.”Prof. Dr. Alexander Lorz, Hessian Minister of Education and Cultural Affairs
The Hessian Ministry of Science and the Arts (HMWK)
Making it possible for more young people to participate in cultural life – this has been the goal of projects funded by the Hessian Ministry of Science and the Arts since 2014. The Flying Artist’s Room is one such programme that aims to achieve this with its mobile construction of a transportable live-in studio. Artists who have experience of cultural education, but whose work at the same time stands out for its high artistic quality, come straight to the students – no matter where they are. Consequently it is not just the artists, who receive a monthly bursary of 2,000 euros, who have the opportunity to progress their own work; a young generation also come into direct contact with the artists and their work. This allows long-term and close co-operations to emerge with artists.
The objective of the Ministry’s projects is to allow children and young people to participate and tap into art and culture, create as much as possible and be introduced to culture at an early stage. This should happen irrespective of where they live, where they come from and their environment. In rural areas, this approach allows better participation in cultural life.
“With the flying artist’s room we’re bringing art and cultural education to children and young people and stimulating their creativity.”Angela Dorn, Hessian Minister of Science and the Arts
District of Fulda
“Making people strong!” The Crespo Foundation’s slogan describes a huge goal that has as many facets to it as there are ways of living. The district of Fulda – birthplace of the Foundation’s founder Ulrike Crespo – is also an important element in this.
As the local school authority, the district of Fulda recognises its responsibility to provide children and young people with a stable and varied foundation for their life. In 65 schools attended by more than 16,000 children, the district ensures there is the appropriate space and technological and digital equipment. In 2021 alone, just under 40 million euros was allocated to new buildings, renovations, modernisations and maintenance.
However, school is more than just a place where knowledge is passed on. Knowledge alone is not enough, given the wealth of information, its complexity and the sheer pace of it. Contextualising what they undergo, experience and learn is more important than ever. It is not just because schools are now open all day, but the roles schools have to fulfil are also growing, with practically all changes in society evident in them and presenting challenges of their own.
Therefore school as a place of learning has changed: school is also a place where children and young people discuss the society in which they live, its contexts, what is strange and familiar, its values, norms and political, religious and philosophical references. School supports young people as they enter the world and find their place in it, and decide how they think, communicate and, of course, act within it all. Cultural education in school makes a huge contribution to this.
“Culture is the foundation of our society and not something you do just because you have the time. Cultural education is not an accessory to general education, but a constituent part of it and fundamental for personal development.”Bernd Woide, District Administrator of the district of Fulda
District of Limburg-Weilburg
The district of Limburg-Weilburg provides opportunities for children from birth until they start school in a total of 120 daycare centres and crèches run by different funding bodies.
There are also 39 primary schools and nine schools offering vocational and general secondary education in the district of Limburg-Weilburg. One of these is Emsbachtal School in Niederbrechen.
As the local school authority, the district is delighted to welcome the Flying Artist’s Room. The primary school and linked vocational and general secondary school have opted for an integrated approach, therefore the Flying Artist’s Room fits in very well with also encouraging children’s creative side.
The district of Limburg-Weilburg’s was responsible for ensuring that the conditions at the school were appropriate, for example providing an area for putting up the mobile building, obtain planning permission and connecting utilities. The district was given considerable assistance in this by its project partner, Albert Weil AG, which undertook the engineering work required free of charge.
“I’m delighted that we have the opportunity to marvel at the flying artist’s room for a year at one of our schools in the district of Limburg-Weilburg. I was very happy to sponsor this wonderful project. Children are our future and it’s our job not just to make demands on them, but to encourage them as well.”Michael Köberle, District Administrator of the district of Limburg-Weilburg
The district of Offenbach
Education and a varied pedagogical offering are a top priority in the district of Offenbach as Hessen’s second largest school authority. Refurbished schools with modern equipment offer a good foundation for learning for around 43,000 students. For this to continue in future as well, in 2020 two of the district’s own organisations took over management of its 88 schools and around 450 buildings.
Also necessary for a good learning environment are an appropriate IT infrastructure, which the district of Offenbach has been improving for many years. It was one of the first districts in the state to have full WLAN in all its schools and is now being followed by the provision of broadband in schools funded by Berlin.
The flying artist’s room is touching down at Einhard School in Seligenstadt and bringing art and cultural education directly to the school’s premises. For at least a year, an artist will live, work and inspire teachers and students there. The open studio offerings provide stimulation, unleash ideas and inspire aesthetic approaches to all subjects, encouraging the creative potential of students at the school. The children and young people can discover their own creativity in art and culture.
“The flying artist’s room brings art directly into the school’s everyday life. This creative project will develop the way the children and young people see things and express themselves, and will shape their aesthetic thinking and actions in a new way. School is about more than lessons and education doesn’t just take place in the classroom. The studio on the playground will become an extraordinary environment for learning and experiencing something new.”Oliver Quilling, District Administrator of the district of Offenbach
The district of Bergstraße
Bergstraße is the southernmost district in Hessen and the only district in Germany that is in two European metropolitan areas: Rhine-Main and Rhine-Neckar. Johann Wolfgang von Goethe admired its rich cultural landscape with the Rhine river, Ried countryside and Odenwald mountains, declaring “This is where Italy begins.”
Education is a top priority here. The district is the local authority for 74 schools providing a general education, including primary schools, special schools and academic schools. This offer is supplemented by 14 vocational schools, two schools for adults and privately run schools. With the “Bergstraße strategy for modern schools”, students are offered a modern learning environment. At its core are the latest educational principles, boosting of digitisation in schools and the provision of modern support. In times of dynamic change, it ensures that children and young people are equipped with the best possible skills for the future.
With projects such as digi_space, an open research laboratory for all students, the district is also focusing on innovation in education. As the local authority for Gadernheim Education Centre in Lautertal, the district of Bergstraße is delighted to be able to welcome the flying artist’s room to the school.
“Mediation of art and culture to children and young people presents a particular challenge, so I’m really delighted that a project as unique as the flying artist’s room will provide an extraordinary education at one of our schools in the district of Bergstraße. In a dynamically changing society, creativity is an important skill. I’m sure the students will gain a great deal from this year.”Christian Engelhardt, district administrator
The district of Gießen
The district of Gießen provides a wide range of community-based schools. With 39 primary schools, nine comprehensive schools, four special schools and a vocational school, it is responsible for the education of over 16,000 young people. As the local school authority, the district of Gießen wants
to provide the best conditions for the educational success of all students with modern school buildings and good technological equipment in the district’s 53 schools. Alongside well-equipped
schools, the district places great value on high-quality and reliable full-day and afternoon supervision.
The district of Gießen is extending a warm welcome to the flying artist’s room at Adolf Reichwein School in Pohlheim. The flying artist’s room fits brilliantly with the school’s concept, which is committed to a future-oriented teaching and learning culture. Awakening interest in the new and discovering hidden talents are among the school community’s objectives. The artistic impetus provided by the artist-in-residence will open up new opportunities for the students to access art and culture.
“The concept of the flying artist’s room, which wants to integrate encounters with art and artists into everyday life at school, offers great potential for encouraging students’ creativity. As the local school authority, we’re delighted that one of our schools in the district of Gießen, Adolf Reichwein School in Pohlheim, was selected and that the project will be enriching school life in the months to come.”Christopher Lipp, first district councillor and councillor in charge of schools
The district of Main-Kinzig
With a population of around 423,000, the district of Main-Kinzig is the most populous district in Hessen by far. Residents are spread across 29 towns, cities and municipalities and more than 150 villages. The largest city is Hanau, which has a population of around 100,000. This is where the Kinzig flows into the Main. The rivers not only give the district its name, but also shape the landscape and hills of Vogelsberg and Spessart, with the foothills of the Rhön mountains to the east.
The central administrative district offices, which opened in the summer of 2005, are in Gelnhausen and have a staff of around 1,200. Their tasks are varied and range from waste management to vehicle registration. Among other things, they look after the 100 or so schools in the Main-Kinzig district (excluding Hanau).
The most famous people from the district of Main-Kinzig are probably the Grimm brothers, Jakob and Wilhelm. The linguists and world famous collector of fairy tales were born in Hanau, along with their brother, the painter Ludwig Emil Grimm. Another famous resident was Philipp Reis, who lived and worked in Gelnhausen and around 160 years ago invented the telephone. Famous constructions bear witness to the region’s eventful history. At one time the Romans constructed their boundary wall, the Limes, here and more than 20 castles and palaces provide an insight into how people lived in the past.
“In my opinion, free access to art and culture and above all active participation are very important to people’s personal development. That’s why I’m delighted that we’re able to welcome the flying artist’s room to the Main-Kinzig district and give young people the opportunity to experience instruction, enthusiasm and affirmation. We’re really looking forward to seeing what comes out of it.”Thorsten Stolz, district administrator and councillor in charge of cultural affairs