Grants of the Stiftung Niedersachsen for Media Art 2024 at Edith-Russ-Haus

Grants for Media Art of the Stiftung Niedersachsen at the Edith-Russ-Haus

Applications for the 2025 grants will be possible from December 2024 until the end of February 2025 and will be advertised here on this page. If you want to be informed about the start of the application, you can subscribe to the Edith-Russ-Haus newsletter here.

Felipe Castelblanco, Jakrawal Nilthamrong and Kaensan Rattanasomrerk and Yehwan Song win the grants for 2024!

In 2024, the House for Media Art awarded six-month work grants of 12,500 euro to three artists. Nearly 400 artists from all over the world applied for the grants, which have been sponsored by the Foundation of Lower Saxony since 2001.

Many of the works developed in Oldenburg through this program have gone on to be shown in international exhibitions and won various prizes. Through its generous support, the Foundation of Lower Saxony intends to encourage the development of both artists and the House for Media Art itself, as one of the leading sites for media art in Germany. The institution is internationally known for its high-quality programming and stewarding of artistic creation, which it supports through both its international networks and local collaborations.

The jury, who reached their decision following an intense two-day discussion, consisted of Joasia Krysa, director of the Institute of Art and Technology and professor at the Liverpool John Moores University; Uli Ziemons, Co-curator of the Forum Expanded Programms of the Internationalen Filmfestspiele Berlin; and Edit Molnár and Marcel Schwierin, co-directors of the House for Media Art.

The open call received submissions from 430 artists, one of the largest responses in the history of the grant.  Many projects dealt with pressing issues such as the amplification of politically and historically marginalized voices, global-scale migratory movements (of both people and plants), and the consequences of climate degradation, as well as the possibilities of a different relation between humans and other plant and animal species. Others were concerned with challenging the basic technologies that play such an important role in our daily realities or with reintroducing bodily experience in a largely dematerialized digital existence.

Colombian artist Felipe Castelblanco’s research-based work investigates institutional forms, creates platforms for dialogue, and explores new forms of public space that enable coexistent encounters between unlikely audiences. The artist works with Indigenous communities, activists, and groups who share a common purpose, and facilitates collective action and creation as a way to open avenues for biocultural peace-building and historical and territorial justice. Castelblanco’s proposal revolves around the provocation that plants and humans might form an alliance to affect the course of history through selective memory loss and space travel. The project combines an essayistic elaboration on the uses of a toxic flower in Indigenous traditional practices and the story of a member of the activist group La Guardia Indigena who is transported from his homeland to the Swiss Alps. “My aim is to create an artist film based on ethnomedicinal practices of the Kamnësnta and Inga people in the Colombian Andean Amazon, who still maintain a close relation to a rare and potent plant locally known as Borrachero Andaki,” writes the artist. The jury found especially intriguing how the artist navigates the story in multiple cultural and geographical contexts, mirroring the entangled nature of complex ecosystems of vegetal beings, and human memories.

The two Thai artists Jakrawal Nilthamrong and Kaensan Rattanasomrerk work with moving images and installations and share an interest in experimenting with cinematic languages. Their work often revolves around questions of collective trauma and Thailand’s history in a wider geopolitical context. Their proposal, The Spore, is a research-based, site-specific art project that explores the possibility of a future with mushrooms as potent guides.   During their Oldenburg residency, the artist duo plans to produce a new video work that follows a Thai restaurant worker searching for mushrooms in the forest, delving into the historical trauma that lingers among first-generation refugees escaping from war. The project also includes a series of mushroom sculptures, evoking the 400-year-old trade that spread different spores between Europe and Indochina.  As the artists reiterate: “The project is based on scientific research that makes us see a new paradigm of considering knowledge, wisdom, and social structure. Mushrooms can only grow from decay. Thus, they are a metaphor for how humans can reinhabit the space of the wounded as it becomes the very ground of our existence.” The jury was particularly intrigued by the poetic entanglements of organic sculptural matter and geopolitical historical investigation, in light of the duo’s experimental image-making practices.

Yehwan Song is a Korean web artist interested in creating non-user-centric, unconventional, and diverse independent internet spaces. She writes: “My primary focus in my projects is on exploring the discomfort and insecurity experienced by marginalized users, which is often hidden beneath the facade of technological utopianism, marked by excessive comfort, speed, and ease of use.” Her proposal, titled The Square, includes a website, a web performance recording, and an installation. The jury appreciated the project’s critical edge as a metaphorical exploration of digital colonization and expansionist ideology, drawing inspiration from the contemporary internet’s erosion of private spaces and putting forth aspirations for digital justice. Song’s practice destabilizes the user-friendly, shiny surface of the internet to create distance from the restraints of corporate-built online platforms and to reveal other possibilities for gathering and connecting. As she puts it: “The setup is designed to immerse the audience in a harmonized collective voice, fostering a participatory experience. The project is a call to action, urging the audience to actively shape the internet’s future.”



Grants awarded so far

2023 | Karolina Breguła | Tenzin Phuntsog | Eoghan Ryan
Jury: Zdenka Badovinac, Edit Molnár, Gabriela Salgado, Marcel Schwierin

2022 | Lucy Beech | Silvia Martes | James Newitt
Jury: Sofía Hernández Chong Cuy, Edit Molnár, Lívia Páldi, Marcel Schwierin

2021 | Rana Hamadeh | Jim Jasper Lumbera | Hira Nabi
Jury: Cosmin Costinas, Edit Molnár, Emily Pethick, Marcel Schwierin

2020 | Ayò Akínwándé | Mochu | Clara Jo
Jury: Natasha Ginwala, Robert Leckie, Edit Molnár, Marcel Schwierin

2019 | Kim Schön | Mario Pfeifer | Viktor Brim
Jury: Nav Haq, Edit Molnár, Marcel Schwierin, Monika Szewczyk

2018 | Petra Bauer | Zach Blas | Daniel Jacoby
Jury: Charles Esche, Edit Molnár, Marcel Schwierin, Joanna Sokołowska

2017 | Noor Afshan Mirza/Brad Butler | Stefan Panhans | Shirin Sabahi
Jury: Bassam El Baroni, Edit Molnár, Stefanie Schulte Strathaus, Marcel Schwierin

2016 | Doireann O'Malley | Zorka Wollny | Amir Yatziv
Jury: Sebastian Cichocki, Galit Eilat, Edit Molnár, Marcel Schwierin

2015 | Mahmoud Khaled | Szabolcs KissPál | Anette Rose
Jury: Inke Arns, Nataša Ilic, Edit Molnár, Marcel Schwierin

2014 | Derek Holzer | Ivar Veermäe | Emma Wolukau-Wanambwa
Jury: Renate Buschmann, Claudia Giannetti, Hermann Nöring, Andrea Sick

2013 | Marcello Mercado | Patrícia Reis | Hannes Waldschütz
Jury: Prof. Dr. Norval Baitello Junior, Roberta Bosco, Dr. Claudia Giannetti, Prof. Hartmut Jahn

2012 | Kerstin Ergenzinger | Antoine Schmitt | Christoph Wachter/Mathias Jud
Jury: Agnieszka Kubicka- Dzieduszycka, Ingmar Lähneman, Domenico Quaranta, Dr. Axel Roch, Rebecca Shatwell

2011 | Darsha Hewitt | Ute Hörner/Mathias Antlfinger | Yunchul Kim
Jury: Ursula Damm, Kristian Lukic, Lars Midboe, Andrea Sick

2010 | HeHe (Helen Evans / Heiko Hansen) | Ralf Baecker | Anahita Razmi
Jury: Andy Cameron, Susan Collins, Steve Dietz, Sabine Himmelsbach, KH Jeron, Ingmar Lähnemann

Jury: Graham Harwood, Sabine Himmelsbach, Stephen Kovats, Amanda McDonald Crowley, Yukiko Shikata

2008 | Petko Dourmana | Kristin Lucas |Cornelia Sollfrank
Jury: Sabine Himmelsbach, Dr. Susanne Jaschko, Warren Sack, Annette Schindler, Dr. Stephan Urbaschek

2007 | Jens Brand | Ellen Fellmann | Eddo Stern
Jury: Sabine Himmelsbach, Tom Holley, Christina Kubisch, Björn Melhus

2006 | Annina Rüst | Corinna Schnitt |
Jury: Susanne Binas-Preisendörfer, Michael Connor, Sabine Himmelsbach, Karin Ohlenschläger

2005 | Amie Siegel
Jury: Sabine Himmelsbach, Jan Schuijren, Paula von Sydow, Susanne Weirich

2004 | Minerva Cuevas | Calin Dan | Martine Neddam
Jury: Rosanne Altstatt, Sarah Cook, Iris Dressler, Babara Engelbach, Ursula Frohne

2003 | Dave Allen | Bernadette Corporation | Naomi Ben-Shahar
Jury: Rosanne Altstatt, Sarah Cook, Iris Dressler, Babara Engelbach, Ursula Frohne

2002 | Johan Grimonprez | Dagmar Keller/Martin Wittwer | Florian Zeyfang
Jury: Rosanne Altstatt, Christoph Blase, Josephine Bosma, Linda Anne Engelhardt, Christoph Keller, Sarah Cook, Jens Thiele, Susanne Weirich

2001 | Susanne Weirich