On September 16, 2021, the European Commission honored the work of Klasse Klima with the New European Bauhaus Rising Stars Award in the category „Interdisciplinary education models“. One of the Klasse Klima members represented the group and attended the prize ceremony in Brussels. Link to press release.
Klasse Klima applied for the award in critical reference to the educational model of the historical Bauhaus, a modern art and design academy with a lasting impact on design history — and on the environment. The Bauhaus promoted the entanglement of creative practice with industrial capitalism and hence, with climate destruction. Intellectually and methodologically, it is a mistaken reference for the New European Bauhaus, a policy and funding program that mobilizes design, art and architecture for climate action. In their current shape, both the New European Bauhaus and the European Green Deal aim for modernization instead of profound, climate-just transformation.
Since 2019, Klasse Klima is creating transdisciplinary spaces for the unlearning of unecological creative practice and for the exploration of the agency of art and design towards climate justice. Klasse Klima will use the award of 15,000€ to expand on its local engagement by building a transnational network of like-minded initiatives. As a part of this, the group will also continue to critically engage with the EU’s initiatives by conceiving translocal spaces for their constructive negotiation.
Klasse Klima stated this stance on the New European Bauhaus in the award application. The collective thanks the juries of the Rising Stars Awards — the European public and a group of 80 official partners of the initiative — for trusting, supporting and amplifying this perspective.