Six Exceptional Thinkers Sharing their Expertise as Mentors.
The Chinese-French curator has been the youngest of the Chinese practitioners who have changed western views on Asian and particularly Chinese art practice since the 1990s. Throughout his career he has shown a unique understanding of emerging artists and a deep knowledge of contemporary art from both hemispheres. As Artistic Director of MAXXI, the National Museum of the 21st Century Arts in Rome, Hou uses his comprehensive approach for exhibitions on global issues, featuring all genres and art practices.
Heather Martin is a pioneer in user-experience design (UX) and a renowned industry expert in interaction design. As Vice President of Design based in Smart’s London studio, she leads multidisciplinary global teams on large-scale user experience and service design projects.
The German-Norwegian video artist is a master of subversive storytelling with a sense of hilariously dark humor. For his work, he chooses well-known figures, topics, and scenes primarily from American films and television shows, and recontextualizes those stereotypes by re-enacting them. Melhus mostly uses audio footage as a starting point, reassembling it into new and highly exaggerated narratives, illuminating realities and questions in today’s societies.
The Swiss architect Philippe Rahm is an international pioneer in exploring the field of architecture and its physiological effects, especially with respect to their interdependencies with climatological conditions. On the basis of complex analysis and calculations of the geographical, meteorological, and physical circumstances in situ, Rahm creates astonishing buildings and spaces, which follow the atmospheric conditions of their environments.
The American choreographer Richard Siegal is one of the key players in contemporary dance, continuously setting new standards. After earning international recognition as a soloist at Ballett Frankfurt/Main, Siegal founded the interdisciplinary platform The Bakery in 2006, which is now based in Munich. The project brings together groups of artists, philosophers, and software programmers offering a platform for them to develop new forms of expression.
The Irish composer and performer Jennifer Walshe has achieved international recognition for her unique body of work, and has become a favorite of contemporary music festivals. Walshe presents edgy solo and collaborative performances, mingling a wide variety of media, techniques, and genres. For her pieces, she soaks up everyday culture ranging from poetry, pop music, and boxing to kitsch objects, Twitter tweets, and street situations—everything in Walshe’s surroundings has the potential to become her raw material.