3518 Wasserschule, Eine Spekulation in vier Jahreszeiten, 2024

image Tom Dachs

A project of the Kunstgewerbemuseum / DESIGN CAMPUS, Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden in collaboration with Studio Makkink & Bey, Rotterdam (NL), an

The WaterSchool is a speculative framework that proposes to rethink the cultural, didactic, and infrastructural model of education and living, relating all these facets to one theme: water and its interconnections. The food we eat, the clothes we wear, and the houses we live in affect our direct and indirect use of water. What will the urban and rural landscape look like if we consider, for example, the production and development of sustainable housing, bio-based materials, green industries, renewable energy sources, new types of food, and equitable interaction between all organisms? The WaterSchool imagines an approach to resources that is rooted in inclusivity over exclusivity, fostering a new concept of luxury centred on sustainability rather than exploitation.

In this exhibition, Schloss Hubertusburg – a place where a peace treaty was signed in 1763 – once again becomes a venue where the peaceful future of resources is negotiated. Looking back at the historical context of the centuries-long struggle for resources and the power structures built around them, we urgently need to rethink their use, ownership, and accessibility. The building itself as a spatial resource has seen many uses – as a royal hunting lodge, a military depot, a manufactory for stoneware and other goods, a prison, a hospital, and a psychiatric clinic: so why not as an educational facility?

The WaterSchool imagines Schloss Hubertusburg as a place of learning and forming connections with the productive landscapes around it – in the fields of agriculture, forestry, aquaculture, and domestic economy. In this exhibition, the speculative future of Hubertusburg and its surroundings is deconstructed into four seasons, each addressing a speculative landscape of living and working through objects, paintings, and drawings. The framework proposed by the WaterSchool is brought to life in this exhibition accompanied by historical and contemporary pieces from the Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden, the DESIGN CAMPUS Summer School, and through the exhibits of artists, designers, architects, and local partners, whose work promotes interaction between all organisms, communities, and their environment.