How do your dreams come true? Work hard and you will shine like a star. You can reach anything.
From August of 2021 to April of 2022, the newly founded start-up Grind&Shine Inc. of the Cake&Cash Curatorial Collective is presenting a five-part exhibition series on the theme of self-actualization in the showcases of the Kunstverein. The focus lies on the exploration of dependencies and subversive practices of (artistic) self-exploitation that arise from narratives of fulfillment and authenticity through professional success. In addition to the varying five invited positions, Cake&Cash meanwhile designs one of the four showcases between tracks 3 and 4 with questions emerging through the curatorial process.
The five invited artists question the relationship between work and identity. Neoliberal society has elevated artists, curators, and activists to prototypical role models for the contemporary working world. The blending of profession and self-fulfillment has given rise to a network of structures which favors precarious working conditions and that is to be pulled apart, thread by thread. The search for a solution - or at least an improvement in our working conditions - is akin to looking for a needle in a haystack. Talking about this collectively transforms an "I Fail, But I Try" into a "We Fail, But We Try" and makes it easier to unravel.
The setting of the train station is the ideal background. This is where realities collide. Early in the morning, the Metronome pours out people heading to work in the northern parts of the city. What does self-realization mean for shift workers on the assembly line or for those who work in the city but can never afford to live there? From the opposite direction, the employees of the Kunstverein as well as the paid and unpaid art workers later arrive at the same place. From the bar-office of the Kunstverein they see the masses pass by again in the evening, before the last laptop is closed here as well. The showcases on the track form a communicating link between parties that are far too rarely in direct exchange with one another and yet have so much in common. Don't we all want a little more?
The series of exhibitions in the showcases of the Kunstverein will be complemented by events at the Grind&Shine Headquarters at the Kunstverein.
Grind&Shine Inc. is a startup company that will operate through the Cake&Cash Curatorial Collective in the bar of the Kunstverein Harburger Bahnhof for one year starting in July of 2021.
With a multi-faceted range of training opportunities, members of the Grind&Shine community are propelled towards their own fulfilling work life.
The Cake&Cash Curatorial Collective is a feminist exchange and exhibition project that has occupied the HFBK Gallery since the winter semester 2020/21 and utilizes this as a research lab.
In May of 2021, Cake&Cash founded Grind&Shine Incorporation at Kunstverein Harburger Bahnhof. Cake&Cash is the organizer of the Pop&Squat online festival for feminist networking at art colleges and can be
heard, among other things, in the Radical Solidarity series of This Is Germany and at the rC3 of the ChaosComputerClub.