In the program, hosted jointly by the Muthesius Academy of Fine Arts and the Cluster of Excellence „Future Ocean“, professors, scientists and artists explored an unusual avenue in the arts for the first time in order to impart knowledge on oceans. Rainer W. Ernst, President of the Muthesius School of Fine Arts, and the filmmaker Stephan Sachs, Professor for Film/ Time-Based Media, were the ones to conceive and implement the idea, namely an experimental piece composed of film, literature, theater, music and real scientific lectures. Film clips shot on an expedition of the research vessel Atalante (2008) to the South Atlantic were projected onto a big screen and accompanied by music from the opera La Traviata and by a dialogue between two speakers from the off. In other sequences, the scientists Arne Körtzinger, Thomas Bosch and Alexander Proelß, all members of the Future Ocean, gave an entertaining and lively account of their research, spanning from ocean currents, some small organisms like the polyp hydra to the legal claims that the countries bordering the North Pole are making on valuable natural resources in the Arctic Ocean.
From the background, the melodious voice of the singer Birthe Bendixen could be beard time and again; her songs about the ocean let many people in the audience get goose bumps. The dramatic advisor, Ingrid L. Ernst, shed light on the ocean from yet another angle by reading uncommon, exceptional texts about the ocean. And in between, voices could be heard from the off again and again: the voices of Rainer Ernst, questioning mind and lateral thinker, and Stephan Sachs, observer and film narrator, arguing about various aspects of European cultural history with regard to the perception of the ocean. At the end of this unique experiment, the audience applauded for a long time. Many people said that the performance which intended to serve as a trial how to merge science and arts, two disciplines which usually hardly go together, should indeed be repeated and extended. We will continue to further explore this – promised