13 April until 14 October 2018
Mobile Worlds
or the Museum of our Transcultural Present

The Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe Hamburg (MKG) is constantly seeking dialogue and reflecting on its role as a cultural and educational institution to affect the present. In 2015, the MKG invited exhibition organizer and critic Roger M. Buergel to work with the diversity and history of the MKG’s collection. Buergel was Artistic Director of documenta 12 in 2007 and is now director of the Johann Jacobs Museum in Zurich. Together with cultural sociologist Sophia Prinz, Roger M. Buergel has developed an exhibition concept that questioned the Eurocentric order of Western museums: Rather than classify objects according to epochs, geographies, art and non-art, the exhibition focused on the global movement of objects, people and ideas past and present and the associated intertwining of cultural forms and worlds of life. This perspective reflected the social, cultural and political complexity of post-migrant society. The exhibition has been understood as a medium that allowed objects, texts and images to be linked in a performative way, as if in a three-dimensional collage. This allowed historical curves of movement and social contexts to appear without the approximately 200 exhibits being definitively attributed a single meaning or interpretation. A variety of paintings, furniture, fashion, photography, graphic art, musical instruments, sculptures, objects, videos, sound installations and more, from different epochs and cultures, has been on show. The project concluded in April with the exhibition Mobile Worlds or the Museum of our Transcultural Present, in cooperation with MKG curators as well as artists and other external partners.

Mobile Worlds was a cooperative project between the Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe Hamburg (MKG), the European University Viadrina in Frankfurt/Oder, the Goethe University in Frankfurt/Main, and the Erich Kästner School in Hamburg-Farmsen. Sponsored by the Bundesministerium für Bildung und Forschung (BMBF) and the Johann Jacobs Museum Zurich. The Project was launched in October 2015 and ended in October 2018 with the special exhibition Mobile Worlds or the Museum of our Transcultural Present at MKG. | Further information at

Curator: Roger M. Buergel | Coordination of the cooperative project Mobile Worlds: Dr. Sophia Prinz | Research associate: Julia Lerch-Zajączkowska, lerch-zajaczkowska(at)

Photo: Geneviève Frisson, © Mobile Welten

Working sketch by the “researchers of things” (students of the Erich Kästner school redesign the museum)