Art Academy Düsseldorf: Tony Cragg takes over temporarily – culture

The former rector of the Düsseldorf Art Academy, Sir Tony Cragg, is to take over the management of the house on an interim basis for a few weeks. This emerges from an internal letter from the Academy to the college and the General Student Committee. The previous acting rector, art historian Johannes Myssok, had announced his resignation in a letter to Minister of Culture Ina Brandes (CDU) at the beginning of March. Since this cannot take effect until a successor has been determined, Brandes has apparently asked Cragg to step in on an interim basis. However, the ministry did not want to officially confirm the appointment of the 73-year-old at the request of the SZ.

The internationally renowned sculptor was rector in Düsseldorf from 2009 to 2013. In 2015 he became an honorary member of the Art Academy. Born in Liverpool, he has lived and worked in Wuppertal since the 1970s, where he runs the Waldfrieden sculpture park. Tony Cragg won the Turner Prize in 1988, received the Federal Cross of Merit in 2012 and was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II in 2018. With his layered sculptures, he is omnipresent in the public space of North Rhine-Westphalia.

Originally, Johannes Myssok had intended to run for the post of rector in the forthcoming elections. He would have been the only candidate against the architect Donatella Fioretti. The Italian had already won the election against Myssok last December with a narrow majority. However, the North Rhine-Westphalian Ministry of Culture and Science did not confirm Fioretti’s election due to procedural defects. As a result, there were student protests; 45 professors at the art academy, which is celebrating its 250th anniversary this year, declared their solidarity with Fioretti in a joint statement.

Once the formal errors have been eliminated, another attempt to elect the rector is to take place on April 24 at a public meeting of the Senate of the Art Academy. Fioretti is currently the only candidate. Disciplinary proceedings initiated against her by the academy because of the alleged failure to declare and approve secondary employment are reportedly off the table. Nothing formally stands in the way of your candidacy in this respect either.

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