Project Description

Evonik Young People Art Prize - Young People Interpret Art



The aim of our young people’s art competition is to awaken interest in modern and contemporary art and further an understanding of aesthetic processes among students. We wish to encourage an active, direct, and creative involvement with art, in an immediate confrontation with originals in the museum. In this way, art can be experienced as an exciting encounter with new and unfamiliar ideas.


Selection Procedure

Eligible for application to the competition are classes and art courses at higher secondary schools, comprehensive schools, and central schools in Germany from the 9th grade upwards. From all submissions received, 20 school classes are selected annually by lot and invited to the MKM to participate in the competition.


1st Project Phase: Museum Visit

The participating classes and their class instructor are invited to spend an entire day at the MKM. Our art educator accompanies the students and provides background knowledge. Travel expenses are assumed by the organizers. Visiting dates are arranged individually with each class.


Visits give students an opportunity to acquaint themselves with the works of art on view at the MKM, and are sufficiently long for the art to take effect and an understanding of it to grow. Pointed questions and controversial debates are expressly encouraged. Rather than being told what they should see, the young people are encouraged to gradually develop their own ideas regarding art interpretation.


2nd Project Phase: Creative Project

Then the students have an opportunity to discuss and evaluate their day in the museum, and to interpret this experience by conceiving a creative project of their own. Working as a team, they are expected to develop, work out, and put into practice an interesting original idea. To ensure equal opportunity, each class has eight weeks’ time at its disposal (not including holidays). Projects must be submitted to the museum by this deadline. Choice of medium and theme are unrestricted. However, it should be ensured that every student in a class contributes to the project, and that the result possesses a certain consistency.


3rd Project Phase: Award of Prize and Exhibition

At the turn of the year, all of the 20 competition submissions will be installed at the MKM, with the students’ cooperation if desired. A distinguished jury of artists and museum experts (Abraham David Christian, Tony Cragg, Susanne Kleine, Markus Langer, Coordt von Mannstein, Walter Smerling and Sylvia Ströher) will select the three competition winners, who will be announced at the official vernissage. After the award ceremony, the students’ art projects can be viewed in the museum.


Site of the Event

The site of “Young People Interpret Art” is the MKM Museum Küppersmühle of Modern Art. The participating students will enjoy a unique tour through several decades of outstanding work by internationally renowned German artists (Georg Baselitz, K.O. Götz, Candida Hofer, Jörg Immendorff, Anselm Kiefer, Markus Lüpertz, A.R. Penck, Gerhard Richter, Bernard Schultze, Rosemarie Trockel, et al.). In addition, the MKM offers a schedule of changing exhibitions reflecting current developments, topical group exhibitions, and retrospectives of established artists.