Art Archives Study. Before and after 2004

Art Archives Study. Before and after 2004

We are pleased to announce the start of the project Art Archives Study. Before and after 2004.

basis wien – Documentation Centre for Contemporary Art (Vienna, Austria), The Archive of Fine Arts (Prague, Czech Republic), and Moderna galerija’s Archives Department (Ljubljana, Slovenia) – three archives of the visual arts of the 20th and 21st centuries and also partners in EAN, a wider network of European archives that has been active for two decades – have initiated a new two-year project entitled ARTAS – Art Archives Study. Before and after 2004.

For decades these three archives have collected, preserved, and made available documentation relating to the contemporary artistic production and its protagonists, writers, and venues in their respective countries, offering researchers and the interested public a wealth of information about the individual figures, institutions, and exhibitions of the art of the 20th and 21st centuries. All partners manage their respective comprehensive databases (Art and Research Database basis wien, abART, RazUme), which together contain data on more than 220,000 exhibitions and 205,000 individuals.

The year 2004, the period of the greatest enlargement of the European Union to date, serves as a starting point for the ARTAS project. With the accession of ten new member states, including the Czech Republic and Slovenia, the political, economic, and social relations among the states changed. The collaborative project will examine the impact this historical moment had on contemporary art in the environments covered by the collected data. The explorations will be based on the materials kept in the three archives and the points where the three databases intersect. The emphasis will be on the correlations between the events and individuals in the countries where the three archives are located.

The project aims to detect the changes in the way artists, curators, and institutions collaborated and connected under the new circumstances. The expected additions to the databases, supplementing the existing collections of materials, will enable a new perspective on guidelines for future collaborations among European archives of contemporary art.

The project is co-funded by the Creative Europe programme of the European Union (2023–2024).








Skulptur Projekte Archives open again!

Skulptur Projekte Archives open again!

In January 2023, the Skulptur Projekte Archives in the LWL-Museum für Kunst und Kultur will open its doors to researchers again. Following the research project The Skulptur Projekte Archives in Münster. A Research Institution for Scholars and the Public funded by the Volkswagen Foundation between 2017 and 2020, the scientific position has been confirmed and filled in November 2022. Hence, there is the possibility again to do on-site research on the Skulptur Projekte.

The Skulptur Projekte Archives is part of the Contemporary Art Collection of the LWL-Museum für Kunst und Kultur. The core of the archives consist of sheets in the form of concept papers, draft proposals, and drawings. There are also numerous models of realised and unrealised works, as well as correspondence between artists and curators. In addition, there are catalogs and short guides, a wealth of press, media and documentary material, photographs and videos, as well as legal and administrative documents such as contracts and authorisations. The archives document, almost seamlessly, all the steps from the preparations for the exhibitions, via the definitive establishment of the projects’ concepts, right up to their realisation and the decision on the whereabouts of art works in the museum’s collection and in Münster's urban landscape. Likewise, the archives contain documents on the works of the Public Collection of Skulptur Projekte that remained in the urban space and are owned nowadays by the City of Münster, the LWL-Museum für Kunst und Kultur, and the University of Münster.

An appointment is obligatory for on-site research. Inquiries can be directed to

Photo: LWL-MKuK / Katharina Neuburger

Free Guided Exhibition Tours | 30 years of ZADIK – Highlights and Insights

Free Guided Exhibition Tours | 30 years of ZADIK – Highlights and Insights

Every 2nd Thursday of the month at 6 p.m. we invite all interested guests to join our public guided tour (in German) through the exhibition "30 years of ZADIK – Highlights and Insights".

Dates: 14.07.2022 | 11.08.2022 | 08.09.2022 | 13.10.2022 | 10.11.2022 | 08.12.2022 | 12.01.2023 | 09.02.2023 | 09.03.2023 | 13.04.2023 | 11.05.2023

On May 25, 1992, the founding meeting of ZADIK took place. 30 years later, we are now looking at the past, present and future. The anniversary exhibition 30 years of ZADIK - Highlights and Insights provides insights into ZADIK's fields of activities and archive holdings.

Let's zoom in: Spot on ZADIK: The exhibition reveals (art) stories about exhibits from ZADIK's archive holdings: from Picasso's "La Vie", which was traded through Galerie Thannhauser and gives insights into the work's provenance, to post-war developments around Art Informel, the ZERO movement to Concrete Art, Fluxus and Happenings. Facing the questions: How did Pop Art come to Germany? And how did the 1980/90s find their way into ZADIK? In its anniversary year, ZADIK focuses on its history, the contexts of art and the diversity in the art market.

Let’s celebrate: ZADIK turns 30!

Let’s celebrate: ZADIK turns 30!

On May 25, 1992, the founding meeting of ZADIK | Central Archive for German and International Art Market Studies took place. 30 years later, we are now looking at the past, present and future. With different formats, ZADIK will accentuate and highlight various aspects in the anniversary year starting May 25, 2022. We will take a look on ZADIK’s history and its archive holdings, the contexts of art and the diversity in the art market.

The former association Zentralarchiv des deutschen und internationalen Kunsthandels (Central Archive of the German and International Art Trade) was founded in 1991 by the general meeting of the BVDG e.V., Bundesverband Deutscher Galerien (Federal Association of German Galleries). The impulse was a donation of the archive stock from the gallery Der Spiegel by Hein Stünke to the BVDG. Today, ZADIK, as an academic institute of the University of Cologne, defines itself as divided into three areas: Specialized archive, research and education institute, and cultural institution. In celebration of ZADIK's 30th anniversary, three campaigns will be realized starting in May 2022 to sustainably establish new formats of science communication:

Let’s zoom in: Spot on ZADIK

  • 30 years of ZADIK – Highlights and Insights | The anniversary exhibition provides insights into the various activities of ZADIK and its archive holdings. The opening is planned for May 25, 2022, exactly 30 years after the founding meeting of ZADIK.
  • Reflections on the Art Market – Writing Art Market History | In autumn 2022, the anniversary edition of ZADIK’s publication series sediment will be published in a sustained conceptual development: In addition to the section Documentation on ZADIK and its history, the peer-reviewed section Research with contributions from external authors will be introduced.

Let’s talk: ZADIK Outreach

Let’s reflect: Diversity in the Art Market

  • Women in the Art Market │ As an interdisciplinary research and outreach project, the academic blog, which was already published in 2021, brings the diversity and complexity of the topic Women in the Art Market into focus and will be continued and expanded in 2022/23.