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Show RCA 2019

Barbara Mueller

Show RCA work

Ordinary Pleasures

The word ‘water’ is a symbol; A lacquerware bowl is a sign, opening up its meaning: the wood’s lightness indicates the water’s weightiness. In line with social psychologist Joshua Ackerman, experiencing lightness and weightiness immediately creates a state of “seriousness;”

Ordinary Pleasures names an immersive environment of tacit signs. These signs are recollected and rebuilt from memory, starting from the paper cone as the ultimate lacquerware bowl: The paper’s lightness indicates the water’s weightiness, creating a specific state of seriousness for everyone who holds it – and has to hold it for a moment because of its pointy shape.


  • Barbara Mueller is a performance artist and researcher asking how situations of tacit learning are created through our encounters with the ordinary, opening up a dialogue through her immersive environments. 

    Within workshops and short seminars (Kingston University/Royal College of Art) Barbara explores tacit learning by practicing ordinary activities.

  • Previous degrees

  • BA of Arts (first class honours), University of Applied Sciences Düsseldorf, Peter Behrens School of Arts, 2016
  • Experiences

  • Guest Lecturer, Kingston University, Faculty of Art, Design and Architecture, Kingston, 2017
  • Exhibitions

  • DAAD Art Show, Copeland Gallery, London, 2018; Triennale of Modernism, Foundation Bauhaus, Dessau, 2016; Berlin Unlimited, Z/KU – Center for Art and Urbanistics, Berlin, 2014
  • Publications

  • Foundation Bauhaus Dessau, Notationen einer Landschaft – Die Stadt als Bühnenraum, Mobilitätslabor für die Bauhaus Fahrradstadt, 19, 2016; University of Applied Sciences Düsseldorf, Gabi Schillig, Spatial Design, Spaces of Communication, 2016; University of Applied Sciences Düsseldorf, Gabi Schillig, Spatial Design, Spaces of Communication, 2018
  • Funding

  • Scholarships from: Royal College of Art, Studienstiftung des deutschen Volkes (German Academic Scholarship Foundation), DAAD (German Academic Exchange Service)
Royal College of Art