Star fish travelling down the English Channel, up the River Thames to London and up the Rivers Rhine and Main to Frankfurt. Could Nessie the Loch Ness monster also manage to leave Loch Ness and escape into the Moray Firth, down the coast and similarly across the Channel and up the rivers to Frankfurt, to look at estate agents’ details of properties in which to live, as are the star fish, repairing limbs damaged in their journeys, as starfish do.
Why do humans appear to be so territorial, when natural species migrate and move back and forwards across the world? Perhaps London and Frankfurt are different? The 2011 census records that 36.7% of London’s population are foreign-born, while around half the population of Frankfurt has a migration background and a quarter of the population are foreign nationals.
“We came along the river bottom, from the Main, through the Channel, upon the Thames, climbed into the first pub we could find the flow of us, 20 arms and legs, sticking to the bar stool, looking for a scene wanting us back in the office we sip PG tips, strategizing on sheets of enameled steel, or none the less pondering how to regrow a lost limb.”
International students from the Städelschule, Frankfurt am Maine (Bradley Davis (1988, UK); Max Eulitz (1987, Germany); Zoë Field (1990, USA); Hannah Fitz (1990, Ireland) and Curtis McLean (1900, Canada) have curated ‘Star’ at the 12 Star Gallery at Europe House in London which, for over 10 years has been running exhibitions of photography and art celebrating cultural diversity across the European Union.
This exhibition, organised by the Goethe Institut, is the first in a series of exhibitions to mark the 60th anniversary of the founding of the EU and will feature work by students from Europe’s leading art schools. Ironically, the March exhibition will show work by students from the Slade School of Fine Art, just before the Brexit button is pushed at the end of the month.
Will there be a need for Europe House after Brexit? Arguably, it could have an even greater role in supporting Britain’s and the EU’s new relationship.