Our Dates

What you want! The New Patrons: Fantasies of Empowerment? Petitions, Liquid Democracy, New Patrons


According to the recommendations of the Robert Koch Institute on the COVID-19 virus, the event has unfortunately been cancelled. We will inform you promptly about a possible new date for the event. You can find detailed information about the refund modalities of already purchased tickets HERE.

Tuesday, March 24, 2020, 7pm
@Grüner Salon/ Volksbühne Berlin
Panel discussion, in German

Alexander Koch, Director Gesellschaft der Neuen Auftraggeber
Christopher Lauer, publicist and former member of the Berlin House of Representatives
Paula Peters, Chief Global Officer Europe at change.org
Host: Pia Rauschenberger, journalist (Deutschlandfunk Kultur, amongst others)

From online petitions, a democracy festival in the Olympic Stadium, demands for liquid democracy, and civil disobedience in climate policy to bottom-up processes in Neue Auftraggeber projects, participation models currently being discussed have one thing in common: they conceive civil society participation beyond traditional representative-democratic processes.

Is this part of the oft-cited “crisis of democracy,” a symptom of lost trust in existing political institutions? Or, on the contrary, an assertive update to democracy as an expression of a contemporary, lively parliament of the many? And more importantly: are these effective instruments in the analogue and digital toolbox of civic engagement? What can we actually achieve with such tools? At the end of the parliamentary day, do they remain nothing more than fantasies of empowerment, politically ineffective feel-good clicktivism?

This evening will be dedicated to answering these questions. It will interrogate the ambivalences in current forms of collective self-empowerment. What is there to the concept of initiative democracy, which opposes being-represented to self-representation? Who speaks for who? Who is (or isn’t) part of the conversation? How does power figure in with this? And what is art’s role?

Further info and tickets

Photo: Tadashi Kawamata, Mémoire en demeure, 2003-2006, Saint-Thélo, France © Les Nouveaux Commanditaires

Funded by the German Federal Cultural Foundation. Kindly supported by the Senate Department for Culture and Europe and the Federal Agency for Civic Education.


Marl dances: For over two weeks, citizens of Marl had the opportunity to approach the choreography of "In C" based on the composition by Terry Riley in workshops with tutors from the company Sasha Waltz & Guests. Interested audience members were able to see the first results in an open rehearsal before the whole of Marl is invited to dance in September.

Photos: Florian Wagner


Mariana Castillo Deball will develop a work for Friedland. The starting point will be the hiking trails and the treasures of the villages that the clients of Friedland have already collected. The first visits and walks have already taken place.

The artist explores ideologically constructed conditions under which artefacts appear in today's culture. To do this, she gathers information from various disciplines such as archaeology and science. Through research and collaboration, she creates works that emerge from the collision and recombination of these different languages.

Mariana Castillo Deball lives and works in Berlin and Mexico City. Her work has been shown at MUAC Museo Universitario Arte Contemporáneo (Mexico City, 2021), Museum für Gegenwartskunst Siegen (Siegen, 2021), Modern Art…


With Jakub Szczęsny, the people of Züsedom developed a bench which, in bright signal orange, places unmissable meeting points in the village landscape, can be used by every age group and, in its design, also offers the younger generation an opportunity to meet. The Züsedom bench. 

On 22 and 23 July, four charity auctions will be held at Broellin Castle to finance the new village benches in Züsedom.
More than 150 objects from the former Erich Kühl secondary school and the stock of the Züsedom countrywomen will be put up for auction.
Bid for a piece of history and support the production of our Züsedom commission!

Visit the auction website here: auktion.neueauftraggeber.de

Auction 1 : Friday 22 July 2022 15:30:00 - DDR teaching aids (focus on technology & audio)
Auction 2 : Friday 22…


From 14 to 29 May, the new patrons of Steinhöfel told stories, designed, planned and built. Together with Constructlab, the Kistenflitzer was created - a mobile meeting point that is now available to the twelve villages of the community as a mobile cinema, rolling cocktail bar, church on wheels and much more.

A project within the framework of pilot funding by the Federal Cultural Foundation. The realisation is supported by the Fonds Soziokultur, the Fondation de France and the Brandenburgischer Kunstverein Potsdam.

Photo: Victoria Tomaschko


The question of how technological developments influence our everyday and community life has occupied Simon Denny (*1982, Auckland, New Zealand) for many years. For the New Patrons of Beeskow, he is designing a sculpture series that makes information accessible and visible in the public space and at the same time promotes the community of citizens in this very space and beyond. 

Themes of personal identity and integrity are addressed, as are social debates about data protection and the use of human experience as a raw material.

Photo: Simon Denny visiting Beeskow Photo: Victoria Tomaschko


It took a few years - but in March, the first project of the New Patrons on the African continent was inaugurated in Cameroon! It all started in 2014, together with the Goethe-Institut Cameroon. The Baka pygmy community in the country's southern rainforest had declared their urgent desire to deal with the fundamental changes in their culture and way of life, and they took the initiative and commissioned a cultural project, which mediator Germain Loumpet has been accompanying and mediating with great patience and passion ever since.

More info on the project can be found here, among other places: www.goethe.de/ins/cm/de/ueb/prn/lbaka.html


Thursday, 18.11.2021, 2–5pm (in German)

An online event for planners and decisionmakers at the municipal and state levels and everyone interested in civic participation and decision-making processes.

We want to exchange ideas with you about how the New Patrons model offers unconventional insights into community processes and guidance on how to address even complex issues without intimidating would-be local activists. We throw open the door to our workshop and look forward to learning about your perspectives on and suggestions for what we do. We hope to launch a dialogue on how we can engage people in new conversations and on the key role that culture and art play for an innovative practice grappling with societal concerns.

We introduce you to a unique approach to civic…


Saturday, 4.9.2021, beginning: 2 pm

Presentation of the artistic concept to the public with welcome addresses from Dr. Reinhard Kubat, District Administrator of Waldeck-Frankenberg and Ljubica Nikolic, University of Göttingen.

Meeting place: Dorfgemeinschaftshaus (Village community center), Torweg 8, 35110 Ellershausen, coordinates: 51°04'46.9"N 8°53'34.9"E

The unusual art project commissioned by the Waldeck-Frankenberg Water Initiative makes visible the threat to water as a resource and commits the people of the region in a movement to protect water as the source of all life.

The citizen-commissioners and the artists will present their initiative to the public together. In a subsequent performance, exemplary first marks will be set, whose signal effect gives expression to the fleeting…


The Gesellschaft der Neuen Auftraggeber has won the Zukunftspreis KULTURGESTALTEN award in the “initiative and network projects” category. The award, which honors forward-thinking cultural policy initiatives and is sponsored by the Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media, was presented yesterday.


We kick off Ruth Buchanan's work A garden with bridges (spine, stomach, throat, ear) for the New Patrons of Moenchengladbach with a three-part workshop series starting in June 2021. In collaborative formats, Ruth Buchanan will introduce the content of the commission and the center points of the patrons group. Topics such as work and working life, health and movement, experience of self and other come up in the workshops and enable a temporary coming together of different groups and people on the Abteiberg in Moenchengladbach.

The events take place as a cooperation of the Kunststiftung im Museum Abteiberg with the Arbeitslosenzentrum Moenchengladbach e.V. and the Stiftisches Humanistisches Gymnasium.


No such things as weeds: Care, growth, regeneration.

SATURDAY, 26.6.2021, 10…