Department of Art and Art History News

Museum founded by alumnus invites recent graduate for residency

View of two story museum front
Till Richter Museum

This summer, a meeting of the minds will occur in a contemporary art museum housed in a castle in Germany. Artist Miguel Aragon (MFA Studio Art, 2012) will travel to Germany for a residency at the Till Richter Museum, founded by art critic and curator Till Richter (PhD Art History, 2011).

Richter’s eponymous museum for contemporary art is located in Buggenhagen Castle on a seven-acre park by the Baltic Sea. The castle as well as the grounds provide space for Richter’s ambitious programming. He stated, “I want the museum to become a destination for the most promising, international, young artists and those who want to enjoy their art.” When asked how his research at UT Austin influenced his museum work, Richter responded, “my pioneer spirit is something that I attribute particularly to my Austin experience, where we made all kinds of projects happen just with a lot of work and good will but without a lot of money, keeps me going.”

Aragon will participate in the three-month Rising Stars residency program, one of two artists selected by a jury. Additional museum programming includes exhibitions from Richter’s collection and a robust series of exhibition programming including galleries for solo exhibitions of work by established artists, media based exhibitions, solo exhibitions of work by emerging artists. In the future, Richter plans to establish a reading room for research and organize a yearly conference for art historians and critics working in contemporary art.

In anticipation of Aragon's first visit to Germany, he said:

“I am hoping to visit some of the World War II prison camp sites, I am exploring the idea of "prisons," and I feel these sites will help as research for what I have planned; they don't directly relate to my work but I feel there might be a connection with what I'm trying to do. This idea I will be developing during the residence still has to do with Mexico's violence and its effects on the citizens. On my last trip to Juarez I noticed that houses looked more like bunkers or prisons, and I realized they acted as self-imposed prisons to protect themselves from the outside. Neighborhoods gated themselves (illegally I might add) to limit the movement in their streets; I am not trying to compare or contrast to the Jewish ghettos or camps, but I want to study them to help me approach the work more carefully.”

Till Richter received a doctoral degree in art history from The University of Texas at Austin in 2011. His research and dissertation, entitled Art Historical and Market Criteria in the Evaluation of Contemporary Art, was supervised by Dr. Richard Shiff from the Department of Art and Art History and Stephen Magee from the Department of Finance.

Miguel Aragon received a dual BFA in Printmaking and Graphic Design from The University of Texas at El Paso in 2002 and a MFA. in Studio Art from The University of Texas at Austin in 2012. His works are in collections of the National Museum of Mexican Art (Chicago, Ill.), Tama Art University Museum (Tokyo, Japan), Mexic-Arte Museum (Austin, Texas), and The Amity Art Foundation Inc. (Woodbridge, Conn.). He has been in exhibitions at IPCNY (New York, NY), FotoFest (Houston, Texas), Austin Museum of Art (Austin, Texas), and Lamego Museum and Douro Museum (Alijo, Portugal).