Studies in the Arts (SINTA)

Eva Kirchner

+41 31 684 54 75
Postal Address
Universität Bern
Graduate School of the Arts and Humanities (GSAH)
Doktoratsprogramm Studies in the Arts (SINTA)
Eva Kirchner
Muesmattstrasse 45
3012 Bern

Eva Kirchner

Eva Kirchner is searching for ways of collective work in the arts and of interaction between art and public space. This search is the basis of her central artistic work with the performance-collective „Mit Händen und Füßen“. As a cultural manager she is and has been working in institutions and as as freelancer, more and more involved in reflections and discussions about the role of (inter-)cultural projects in a diverse society. Her thesis plans to connect the relevant discourse about diversity with the community-strengthening parameters of performances.

Born 1983 in Vienna she studied Islamic Studies (core language: Turkish) and German Literature. Then she worked for one year as assistant to the dramatic advisor Viola Hasselberg at Stadttheater Freiburg in the context of a cooperation with Garaj Istanbul, a free stage, named Cabinet. The birth of her daughter was followed by several years at Goethe-Institut Freiburg, where she worked as the official in charge of language courses for teenagers and refugees. 2016-2018 she coordinated the project inSmuseum. interkulturelle Museumsprojekte Stuttgart, which was a newly-conceived cooperation of the state-run museums in Stuttgart. The aim of this group was to search for interfaces between the museums in the context of intercultural programs and to create joint programs for refugees and migrants. Here she increasingly asked herself how cultural projects can and must be organized  in order to be seen and understood as common ground for everybody.

In 2018 Eva Kirchner decided to settle in Freiburg and work freelance. In addition to her artistic work she is active as a cultural manager and in art education (cooporation of Jugendkunstschule Freiburg/Kunstverein Freiburg: Kunstreport.)

As a cultural manager she co-directs the sociocultural project kunst land wasser (cooperation: Projektwerkstatt Kubus³ und Haus der Begegnung) which is supposed to run for several years.

Her current performance project bewegung! (und liebe) is looking for a way to create  an artistic process and a performance situation that can be shaped by all involved - members, core team and audience. It will be put on stage at the end of June 21 at the E-Werk Freiburg.


Prof. Dr. Christina Thurner, Universität Bern, Institut für Theaterwissenschaft
Prof. Dr. Priska Gisler, Hochschule der Künste Bern HKB, Institut Praktiken und Theorien der Künste

Doctoral project 

Jenseits der Partizipation – Möglichkeiten der Performance

Cultural projects which run under the heading „participation projects“ increasingly meet with criticism. People working in the cultural scene and academics alike recognize a tendency in those projects – even if unintended – to re-establish hierarchy, e.g. by working with target groups, which are marked as the others (othering) by summarizing what are in fact different people under one aspect of their identities. The term participation itself is considered to mark participants as different from and outside an assumed core society.

This thesis analyses the relevant discourse in the hope to find parameters which might help to create an open space which can be shaped, attended and experienced by anybody. The analysis intends to focus on performances and believes in their power to create and strengthen community between all people involved in the performance situation.

In an interdisciplinary appproach this thesis aims to connect the current discourse about the role of performances in the field of Theatre and Dance Studies with the present diversity discourse among people working in the cultural scene and the academic world.

On the practical side the thesis is supplemented by a close observation of exemplary performances; in one of them I will be part of the artist collective. At the same time the thesis takes a close look at the funding situation which often transports criteria which include a political interpretation of the term participation project.

Research priorities

Partizipation, Diversitätsdiskurs, Diskursanalyse, Praxeologische Tanzforschung, Performativität