July 25, 2022

Knowledge transfer through innovative exhibitions

Getting a professional exhibition up and running in four semesters – that is the objective of the interdisciplinary teaching concept “Mediale Ausstellungsgestaltung” (“Exhibition Design”), which was recently awarded the “Landeslehrpreis” (“State Teaching Award”) by the Ministry of Science, Research and the Arts Baden-Württemberg (MWK).

Tell Genderes”, “Rebuild Palmyra?”, “LINK” and “STAYIN’ ALIVE” – these are four exhibitions that took place in the “Turm zur Katz” in downtown Konstanz. What they had in common? All four were conceptualized and organized by students and resulted from the Mediale Ausstellungsgestaltung” teaching concept, a joint programme offered by the University of Konstanz, the HTWG Konstanz – University of Applied Sciences and the hfm Trossingen (a university specializing in music studies).

The general idea: students from the fields of music design, architecture, communication design, computer science and history bring together their wide range of skills and perspectives to prepare a professional exhibition for the public. Using new media – such as augmented or virtual reality – they create innovative and interactive exhibitions that are cleverly and professionally designed down to the last detail.

Robert Straubmüller

The path to the exhibition spans two years: While the students – all of them non-professionals when it comes to exhibitions – are taught the history and theoretical basics of exhibiting and exhibition design in the first year, the second year is devoted entirely to the conceptualization and realization of an exhibition. Here, the teachers give the students a maximum of creative freedom. The result for the students: their very own exhibition and an extremely high level of identification with their achievements.

Stefan Hauser and Harald Reiterer, professors at the University of Konstanz, and Eberhard Schlag, a professor at the HTWG, launched the programme in 2013. More colleagues joined in the subsequent years. Due to the uniqueness of the concept, its great success and the enthusiasm of the participants, “Mediale Ausstellungsgestaltung” was awarded the MWK’s State Teaching Award in December 2021. But not only the programme, also the exhibitions themselves won several awards: “STAYIN’ ALIVE”, the most recent of the student exhibitions, for example, won Gold at the CommAwards 2021 and at the ADC Talent Award 2022.

Contact: University of Konstanz, Communications and Marketing

Photo(s): Exhibition “STAYIN’ ALIVE!” © Robert Straubmüller, straubmuellerstudios 

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