Michaela Melián

from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Michaela Melián 2015

Michaela Melián (born June 15, 1956 in Munich ) is a German artist and musician . She is co-founder of the band FSK and since 2010 professor for time-related media at the University of Fine Arts (HfbK) in Hamburg .


Melián grew up in Munich. She studied fine arts and music ( cello ) in Munich and London. At the end of the 1970s she met Thomas Meinecke , Justin Hoffmann and Wilfried Petzi through the magazine Mode und Desperation , with whom she published the magazine. In 1980 the four founded their band FSK , which was still part of the first phase of the Neue Deutsche Welle in the musical underground. Melián toured Europe and the United States as the band's singer and bassist. Since the mid-1980s she has been working as an artist, musician and teaching at various universities: Academy of Fine Arts, Munich (1998–1999), the University of Fine Arts Hamburg (HfbK, 2006–2008) and at the ETH Zurich (2008–1999) 2009).

Their production, the radio play Föhrenwald , which deals with the former Föhrenwald camp , was radio play of the month July 2005, won the ARD Online Award of the ARD radio play days in November 2005 and was awarded the 2005 radio play prize of the war blind . The radio play Speicher deals with the first multi-media project in Germany, the presentation of VarioVision at the 1965 International Transport Exhibition in Munich. Alexander Kluge (texts), Edgar Reitz (film) and Josef Anton Riedl (music) created a multi-channel show on the subject of travel for the exhibition. The sounds of the show came from the Siemens studio for electronic music . For her project, Melián re-recorded sounds from the only partially functional studio in the Deutsches Museum , received fragments of the text from Alexander Kluge and created a collage of resounding loops and spirals. Speicher was radio play of the year 2008.

With her concept Memory Loops , Michaela Melián won the 2008 art competition of the City of Munich “Victims of National Socialism - New Forms of Remembrance and Commemoration”. The project was realized in collaboration with Bavarian Radio / Radio Drama and Media Art and was named Radio Play of the Year 2010. In 2012 Memory Loops received the Grimme Online Award SPECIAL . “Memory Loops - 300 audio tracks on locations of Nazi terror in Munich 1933–1945” is based on transcriptions of historical and current original sounds by Nazi victims and contemporary witnesses. Michaela Melián uses this to develop collages of voices and music that are linked to the topography of National Socialism in Munich. They can either be heard individually with reference to the location or in one unit as a radio play. In addition to the German audio tracks, 175 contemporary documents are also available in English.

In 2009 she sang on the album The Origin of the Night by the Hamburg punk band Die Goldenen Zitronen .

In 2014 she took up the aria of Mimì from Giacomo Puccini's opera La Bohème for the Kunsthaus Hamburg in the composition Andante Calmo and created a new soundtrack of three voices with its musical motifs and other material. In the same year, she edited the work for further performances and adapted the presentation to the new locations.

In 2016 Melián had her first museum exhibition in the Kunstbau of the Lenbachhaus in Munich , for which she revived or refurbished previous installations, as well as creating a new presentation with Electric Ladyland . This is an installation with music from Jacques Offenbach's opera Hoffmanns Erzählungen , which in turn is based on ETA Hoffmann's work Der Sandmann . Melián took on the figure of Olympia , a mechanical, artificial woman created by a man; Olympia can only sing a song, dance a waltz and say oh as the only word . But then the artificial woman no longer functions as its creator wanted and is destroyed by him. The sound installation divides the music into 16 channels that play different instruments at different points in the room, so that the visitor wanders through the sounds and only ever perceives fragments. Only the bass track itself slowly wanders through the speakers and the room. Melián hung the over 150 m long walls of the artificial structure with enlarged drawings on panels of fabric. They show the creation of women - by men. The images are inspired by science fiction, historical prostheses and modern genetic engineering. As a radio play, Electric Ladyland was broadcast on Bayerischer Rundfunk for the opening of the show.

Melián lives with husband Thomas Meinecke in Upper Bavaria .


The combination of art objects and sound is typical of Melián's work. Similar to the music of FSK, she takes up historical stories, which are often related to a specific local condition or connected with a specific musical association, and alienates them so that only superimposed traces of the original association remain.

Exhibitions (selection)

  • 2005: Art Space Munich
  • 2006: Artworks Berlin, Kunstverein Graz
  • 2008: Cubitt Gallery London, Ulmer Museum Ulm, Galerie Karin Guenther Hamburg
  • 2009: Lentos Museum, Linz , glasmoog / KHM Cologne, Ludlow 38 New York
  • 2013: K 'Center for Current Art, Bremen
  • 2014: In a Mist , Badischer Kunstverein Karlsruhe
  • 2014: Andante Calmo , Kunsthaus Hamburg
  • 2016: Electric Ladyland , Lenbachhaus


  • Tomboy . Staatliche Kunsthalle, Baden-Baden 1996 (catalog of the exhibition of the same name, December 16, 1995 to February 4, 1996).
  • Triangle . Lukas & Sternberg, New York 2003, ISBN 0-9726806-2-4 (catalog of the exhibition of the same name, July 14 to September 1, 2002).
  • Pine forest . Revolver, Archive for Current Art, Frankfurt / M. 2005, ISBN 3-86588-185-8 (catalog of the exhibition of the same name, September 10 to 25, 2005).
  • Memory . Koenig Books, London 2008, ISBN 978-3-86560-454-5 (catalog of the exhibition of the same name, April 19 to June 22, 2008).
  • Rearview mirror . Spector Books, Leipzig 2009, ISBN 978-3-940064-91-2 (in German and English).

Radio plays

  • 2005: Föhrenwald . With Philip Götz, Leonie Hofmann, Gabriel Hecker, Marion Breckwoldt , Peter Brombacher , Eva Gosciejewicz, Hans Kremer , Anna Barbara Kurek, Stefan Merki , Stefan Zinner. Composition: Michaela Melián / Carl Oesterhelt, Realization: Michaela Melián. BR radio play and media art / kunstraum muenchen 2005. As a podcast / download in the BR radio play pool
  • 2008: memory . With Stefan Merki, Hans Kremer, Peter Brombacher, Christos Davidopoulos, Chris Dercon, Laura Maire. Composition: Michaela Melián / Carl Oesterhelt, Realization: Michaela Melián. BR radio play and media art in cooperation with the Münchner Kammerspiele 2008. As a podcast / download in the BR radio play pool
  • 2010: Memory Loops . With Peter Brombacher, Caroline Ebner, Florian Fischer, Julia Franz, Gabriel Ascanio Hecker, David Herber, Hans Kremer , Laura Maire, Steven Scharf, Joana Verbeek von Loewis. Music realization: Carl Oesterhelt / Michaela Melián. Composition / Realization: Michaela Melián. BR radio play and media art in cooperation with the City of Munich / Cultural Department Free Art in Public Space 2010. As a podcast / download in the BR radio play pool.
  • 2014: In A Mist . Audio play on the theater text by Fritz Bauer. By W. Selichowa and Natalia Saz, Moscow 1929. With Stefan Hunstein, Edmund Telgenkämper, Wiebke Puls, Thomas Schmauser, Annette Paulmann, Hans Kremer, Wolfgang Pregler, Çigdem Teke, Peter Brombacher, Angelika Krautzberger, Oliver Mallison, Juno Meinecke, Marina Lindemann , Caroline Ebner, Stefan Hunstein, Stefan Merki, Felix Raeithel. Composition and realization: Michaela Melián. BR radio play and media art in cooperation with the Münchner Kammerspiele and the Badischer Kunstverein Karlsruhe 2014. As a podcast / download in the BR radio play pool
  • 2016: Electric Ladyland . With Christos Davidopoulos, Juno Meinecke, Damian Rebgetz, Steven Scharf. Choir: Miriam von Aufschnaiter, Anton Winstel, Antonia Wirth, Moritz Zehner. Singing: Maximiliane Reichart, violin: Ruth May. Composition and realization: Michaela Melián. BR radio play and media art 2016. As a podcast / download in the BR radio play pool

Solo albums

Other music

  • Music from a Frontier Town 2018 - Samples from a collection of records in the Amerikahaus in Munich.

Film music

Awards (selection)


  • Heike Ander (Ed.): Michaela Melián. Föhrenwald, Revolver Verlag, Frankfurt / Main 2005
  • Bettina von Dziembowski (Ed.): Michaela Melián. Triangle, Verlag Lukas & Sternberg, 2003
  • The bass load of the past . In: taz , October 27, 2006
  • Martin Zeyn: rearview mirror, memory and loops. Audio tracks by the artist Michaela Melián. Deutschlandfunk, April 8, 2016. [1]

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. ^ German Academy of Performing Arts: Radio Play of the Year 2008
  2. grimme-institut.de: Grimme Online Award 2012 - Memory Loops
  3. Deutschlandradio Kultur: Sound artist Michaela Melián A variety that makes you dizzy , March 7, 2016
  4. Süddeutsche Zeitung: "Ach" wie Krach , March 8, 2016
  5. http://www.badischer-kunstverein.de/index.php?Direction=Programm&Detail=537
  6. ^ BR radio play Pool-Melián, Föhrenwald
  7. ^ BR radio play Pool-Melián, Speicher
  8. ^ BR radio play Pool - Melián, Memory Loops
  9. ^ BR radio play Pool-Melián, In a Mist .
  10. ^ BR radio play Pool-Melián, Electric Ladyland
  11. Radek Krolczyk: Records and Reeducation In: jungle world on August 16, 2018