KunstWortKunst: Juror Christine Knödler (left) and headmaster Dr. Robert Anzeneder from the JHG with students in front of Imi Knoebel's work "Fishing Yellow" from 2008. Photo: Franz Kimmel

With great attention and openness, a good 50 tenth-graders from the eight grammar schools in the districts of Traunstein and Altötting encountered art in Traunreut's DASMAXIMUM museum on 15 October. The occasion was the competition "KunstWortKunst" (ArtWordArt) as a joint project of the grammar schools Altötting, Burghausen, Ising, Traunstein, Traunreut, Trostberg and, as a guest, Schule Schloss Stein, which have joined together to form a cluster under the aegis of the Technical University of Munich.

Dr. Robert Anzeneder, principal of the Johannes-Heidenhain-Gymnasium in Traunreut - the JHG is a reference school of the cluster and thus coordinator and contact person of the TU - had used the importance and central location of the MAXIMUM in Traunreut for the year 2014 to put art and creative writing in the focus of extracurricular education for once. Together with her colleagues from the cluster schools and Dr. Birgit Löffler from the museum DASMAXIMUM, upper school coordinator Theresia Bauer from the JHG developed the concept for the interdisciplinary competition.

At the kick-off event, 3300 square meters of exhibition space with major works of international contemporary art awaited the participants, as well as a short introduction to the history of the museum, which was opened as a foundation in Traunreut in 2011 by the first graduate of the Schloss Stein school and art patron Heiner Friedrich. Afterwards, there was an instruction on creative writing by the main juror of the competition, Christine Knödler. With her, it was possible to win over a literature and art scholar who, as a publisher, reviewer and editor, is one of the leading personalities in the field of youth literature. She gave the students a vivid and stimulating introduction to free writing, which is unusual in schools.
By the end of the afternoon, the young people had found "their" work of art after extensive wanderings through the museum halls and were working intently on the draft text. "I just wanted to make a few notes," said one student, "and suddenly the page was already full. Her classmate also appreciated the undisturbed encounter with a sculpture: "At first glance I didn't really recognize the work as art, but after a while I realized that there was much more to it!"

After the first judging of the texts in November, in which the author Norbert Niemann, among others, will scrutinize the texts with experts from German studies, art, culture and the press, the final phase will continue until January, when the winners will be determined and presented to the public in a festive award ceremony.