Blog, TC 2016

You wanna risk a life without risk?

Lecture by Jörg Huber, Critical Theory and Aesthetics, Zurich/Switzerland and Daniel Späti, Head of Transcultural Collaboration, Zurich/Switzerland


Taking a risk is usually more often associated with danger than with a chance that opens up new perspectives. In our daily life we are trying to secure and assure as much aspects possible, which starts with prenatal diagnostics even before we are born. We are (made being) afraid of the unknown and uncertain because it’s BEYOND of our control. While we are longing for unique and extraordinary experiences in our lives, or we are confronted with new and complex challenges in today’s world, we are not ready to deal with the unpredictable at the same time. This restrains us from leaving the comfort zone or explore different ways how to deal with current issues. Meeting an other (as the unfamiliar, the stranger) offers a chance of risking something. Hence a risk is an important element of each transcultural experience and exchange. In the lecture we will talk about various aspects of our relationship to “risk” in our daily life, in arts and design practice or in human relationships and we will insist that taking risk is an important attitude towards a culture of “Beyond Purity”.

Jörg Huber, *1948, studied art history, literature, modern history and philosophy; professor for Critical Theory and Aesthetics; head of the Institute of Critical Theory and professor at Master of Arts in Fine Arts at Zürich University of the Arts (until october 2013). Publications in the fields of critical theory, theory of art, aesthetics, and theory of visual culture.

Daniel Späti, 1970*, studied Design at Zurich University of the Arts (ZHdK). Since 2001 he is lecturer at Zurich University of the Arts, mostly in cross-disciplinary art and design practice on BA and MA level. Since 2013 he is responsible in developing a new international graduate semester program called “Transcultural Collaboration”, which is based in Hong Kong in cooperation with different art universities from East Asia. Since 2012 he is a research associate and at present co-leading a major research program supported by the National Scientific Research Foundation of Switzerland in the field of “Event Culture and City Development” as well as a collaborator for a research program on “Telematic Performances”. Next to university he works as an independent curator in the field of cultural events like music concerts, club-events, festivals, or conferences.