reciprocal turn is an online journal for artistic practice and art theory as well as a label under which events take place.
The thematic issues provide a frame for investigations in various forms of expression: artistic works, theoretical essays and reviews are all dealing – each in its specific way – with the given theme. Neither do the theoretical essays serve as comments on the contributed artworks nor do the artworks serve as illustrations for the theory.
Each issue is published online. The online journal is the core of reciprocal turn. According to the theme, each issue is uniquely designed in print. The printed version of an issue is not congruent with the online version. Its form changes and may be an actual magazine or fancy PDFs to download.
reciprocal turn is furthermore a label under which events, so called ‹Offlives› take place. Each Offlive is associated with the theme of the current issue.
reciprocal turn is based in Karlsruhe, Germany and edited by native german speakers. Being connected with people from different countries we decided to produce mainly in English.
The reciprocal turn team
Mira Hirtz and Johanna Ziebritzki, founders and editors.
Mira Hirtz is an art theorist and performer based in Karlsruhe, Germany. She studied art theory and choreography at HfG Karlsruhe and HZT Berlin. Johanna Ziebritzki is an art theorist focused on cultural studies and critical theory. She is based in Karlsruhe, Germany, where she studies at the HfG.
Michail Rybakov, web developer.
He is a media artist and experience designer based in N’Zerekore, Guinea.
EVA TATJANA STUERMER und Erik Schoefer, graphic designers.
Erik Schoefer is a graphic designer living in Karlsruhe. He studied communication design at HfG Karlsruhe and typography at HGB Leipzig.
Jandra Boettger, art mediator.
Jandra Boettger is an art theorist, mediator and writer. She is studying art theory, media philosophy and graphic design at the University for Arts and Design Karlsruhe. She likes to analyze mostly anything, fathom theories, assemble people, meet challenges and go running and dancing.
reciprocal turn is based on empathic thinking about art. We dedicate our empathic art theory to the question of todays possible value of art and culture, never taking it for granted while at the same time adamantly believing in it.
What makes art relevant? What distinguishes political and critical art from therapeutic and self-referential art? And what distinguishes these artistic practices from other practices? By which means does an artwork relate to the category ‘art’? Definitions of what art is, and of what art is for, will always be refutable. Art is a historical phenomenon dependent on institutions, discourses and perspectives. Art and culture matter. But how? And why?
We claim our will to look at basic questions. Rather than coming to stable conclusions our demand is to tackle the aspects that we consider urgently intriguing. Our engaged position is tightly linked to a critical, analytical perspective. The term ‘culture’ come to life when one links the reflexive practices of the individual to the ‘world’, to what it is imbedded in, to what it produces, to how it relates, to its forms of expression. Thereby we argue against taking art as an empty, merely economic format, as well as a means for reciprocal superficial valorization. #zero collects all the articles which we wrote in relation to the phenomenon of the reciprocal turn.
We take ambiguity to be the potential of art. It is manifest in the tension between beauty and resistance, between the force of attraction and rejection, between immersion and critical curiosity. Between believing in the world that an artwork creates and the reflexive doubt about it. One engages, yet holds back. The material artwork enables critical agency. Categorizing and generalizing leads to formulas which, in turn, can deal with broader questions than the singular artwork.
One has to remain conscious about this constant back and forth of investigating, analyzing and categorizing – even if that means to never ‘arrive’. Based on the emphatic stance on art each issue has a different focus. Diverse positions from varying producers contribute with their approach. We build the frame in which we keep playing with forms, mediums, concepts.