Open Call: Exercising [Eastern] Modernity 2022 - Instytut Pileckiego


15.08.2022 () 20:00

Open Call: Exercising [Eastern] Modernity 2022

Die vierte Edition von Exercising Modernity klopft an die Türe - bis zum 15.08.2022 kann man sich bewerben!

Kurze Einführung auf Deutsch - alle wichtigen Details unten! 

Die vierte Edition von Exercising Modernity klopft an die Türe - bis zum 15.08.2022 kann man sich bewerben!

Ein Muss für alle, die sich für die Geschichte und Zukunft der Moderne sowie für Ost- und Mitteleuropa interessieren und die ein besseres Verständnis dafür entwickeln wollen, was wenige Flugstunden entfernt im Zuge des russischen Angriffskriegs gegen die Ukraine aktuell auf dem Spiel steht. Es handelt sich - man kann es nicht oft genug betonen - um essenzielles europäisches kulturelles Erbe.

Dieses Jahr nennen wir das Programm "Exercising [Eastern] Modernity' - der bisherige thematische Fokus - die Geschichte Polens, Israels, Deutschlands und das Erbe der Moderne - wird nicht verlegt, sondern erweitert. Er soll auf Ost- und MItteleuropa insgesamt, die Spuren der Moderne in der Region und vor allem auf aktuelle sowie historische Theorieansätze und Paradigmen, mittels welcher diese Region häufig interpretiert wird, gelegt werden. Denn neben einem Krieg gegen Kulturgut findet auch ein Krieg gegen Erinnerung statt (wenn etwa ukrainische Namen gestrichen und durch russische ersetzt werden). In diesem Kontext werden auch Begriffe wie "Dissonant Heritage" oder "Invention of Tradition" (E.Hobsbawm) kritisch erörtert: Wir gehen den Fragen nach, woran im öffentlichen Raum erinnert wird und wer die Deutungshochheit über das kulturelle Erbe für sich bestimmt.

Dabei sollen die Konzepte und Sammelbegriffe "Ost" und "West" fundamental analysiert und hinterfragt werden. Unausweichlich wird es dabei um die von zahlreichen Ambivalenzen, Inkohärenzen und Grauzonen getragenen politischen, geografischen und kulturellen Grenzen Europas im 20. und 21 Jahrhundert gehen. Wie bei Exercising Modernity üblich wird dabei folgende Frage im Zentrum des Programms stehen:

Welche Rolle haben Kultur und Architektur bei der Ausgestaltung der lokalen Gemeinschaften, Städte und Staaten in Ost- und MItteleuropa gespielt?

Wie oben beschrieben richtet sich natürlich das Programm auch weiterhin, wie alle bisherigen Editionen von Exercising Modernity, an Menschen, die sich für die Kultur und Geschichte Polens, Deutschlands sowie Israels interessieren. Das Hauptaugenmerk wurde bislang auf die Erfahrungen mit der Moderne im 20. Jahrhundert und insbesondere das Erbe der polnischen Moderne gelegt.

Exercising Modernity Academy is a project for intellectual and artistic exchange, focused on describing the Polish share in modern heritage in a new, interdisciplinary way as well as in an international context. The project aims to highlight modern ideas in a broader sense by tracing modernization practices in Europe and beyond, as well as by following the establishment of modern societies and modern states. Nevertheless, we pay special attention to culture, and more specifically to architecture, which we consider a unique field of various intersecting perspectives, ambitions, concerns and hopes
relevant in the formation of the 20th century world.

The fourth edition of the Exercising Modernity Academy will be devoted to Eastern Europe and its historical and contemporary methods of understanding. We want to reflect on the concepts of East and West, have a closer look at the incoherencies between political, geographical, and cultural borders of Europe in the 20th and 21st centuries. We will examine the issue of the role of culture and architecture in shaping the societies, cities and states in this region of the world. Our ambition is to create a field for reflection on the common experience of the 20th century’s modernization movements of the states and peoples of Eastern Europe from the ideological foundations of modernity and its successful representations in art and architecture, through the difficult experience of totalitarianism and its legacy, to
contemporary narratives and self-reflections.

Berlin, 17.10.2022-23.10.2022

Finally, our goal is to sketch a broader and comprehensive perspective on what Eastern Europe is and how we can better understand the events, changes and processes that have shaped the world in recent times.
The Academy will take place in Berlin in October 2022, during which we will encourage a broader reflection on these issues through lectures, seminars and workshops.
The program of the Exercising Modernity Academy 2022 will be focused on four thematic sections:


An attempt to understand the different dynamics characterizing 20th-century
aspirations through to modernity, taking into account the cultural, social and political specificities of these transformations in selected countries of Central and Eastern Europe. We will also try to answer the question of whether modernity has brought us closer to the goal of fulfilling utopian visions or has become a source of suffering.


We will try to explore the impact that the experience of the two totalitarianisms had on the peoples, states, and democracies of Central and Eastern Europe, and to what extent this experience is still present in contemporary narratives.


We will look at how the imagined and experienced divisions between “East” and “West” have been shaped over the past century and in recent years, and how they have manifested themselves in urban spaces.


By starting with a reflection on the role of aesthetics in politics, we would like to take a broader look at the issue of constructing forms of commemoration as an element in creating communal identity (national, ethnic, political, etc.). We would like to ask to what extent this kind of legacy constitutes a troublesome legacy today, and what commemorative approaches, translated into architectural realizations or spatial policy, can be found in various countries of the former “Eastern Bloc”.

Through these topics, we will be guided by experts representing different perspectives and disciplines from all over the Europe.

The Exercising Modernity Academy 2022 will take place on 17.10–23.10.2022 in Berlin.

Participants will be selected in an open call procedure, with a maximum of 18 people from Germany, Israel, and Poland (selected candidates should be a permanent resident of one of the aforementioned countries – citizenship is not required. Refugees from Belarus or Ukraine are most welcome).

• Participation in the lectures and seminars of the Exercising Academy 2022
• partial reimbursement of travel costs:
- for participants coming from Germany: up to 90.00 EUR gross;
- for participants coming from Israel: up to 180.00 EUR gross;
- for participants coming from Poland: up to 90.00 EUR gross.
• expenses for accommodation in Berlin covered in full;
• free participation in lectures, seminars and workshops held by experienced and acclaimed scholars and artists;
• for those who complete the course – the possibility of submitting their own
research or artistic project, elaborated or expanded on during classes, for a special scholarship program organized by the Pilecki Institute Berlin and devoted to the issue of modernity in the 20th century (details will be announced during the Academy). 
After the Academy 2022, the participants will have an opportunity to apply for
Exercising Modernity scholarships for research and/or artistic projects.
(About the previous scholarship edition:

• This call for proposals is directed at individuals.
• The Exercising Modernity Academy 2022 is open to researchers specializing in the humanities or cultural heritage, curators, architects, and artists who shall come from or reside in Israel, Germany or Poland.
• Admission to the Academy requires good working knowledge of the English
• Candidates shall be aged 18 or above.

Candidates are invited to submit their applications by e-mail to the address: by 15.08.2022 (11:00 p.m. CET). Please write “Academy 2022” as the subject of the e-mail.

1. Scans of signed forms:
– declaration concerning the controller of personal data – attachment no. 1,
– declaration concerning the provision of consent to the processing of personal data
and personal image data – attachment no. 2.
2. CV in PDF format (two pages maximum) and/or portfolio (max 50 MB);
3. Description of your artistic/academic/professional interest – related to the main
theme of the Exercising Modernity Academy 2022 (up to 2,500 characters incl. spaces);
4. The organizers reserve the right to contact the selected candidate(s) for additional
online interviews.


• Application documents will be accepted only in English;
• Successful candidates undertake to attend the stationary sessions in October 2022
(depending on COVID-19 restrictions);
• Courses, lectures and workshops will be held in English;
• Should you have any questions, please feel free to contact: contact@
• The results of the recruitment procedure will be announced by 25.08.2022, and the list of selected participants will be published:
- on the website of the Pilecki Institute:
- on the Exercising Modernity project website:
- on the Adam Mickiewicz Institute website:
• The organizers are not under any obligation to substantiate the decisions of the enrolment committee. No appeal procedure has been provided for.
• For candidates selected to participate in the project, the present document will constitute an attachment to the agreement concluded between any such candidate and the Pilecki Institute.