On Reformation and
Standards of Thought
The 1st in a series of annual conferences, DISPUTAZIUNS SUSCH 2017 took as a starting point the 500 anniversary of Martin Luther’s Ninety-five Theses or Disputation on the Power of Indulgences being sent to Albert of Brandenburg, the Archbishop of Mainz, in October 1517. The theme was also referring to the history of the location, the church in Susch, where in 1537 the original Disputaziuns Susch formed one of the 1st reformed protestant churches in Switzerland.
Chaired by Mareike Dittmer and with contributions by Jacqueline Burckhardt, Susanne von Falkenhau- sen, Jörg Heiser, Kasper König, Anda Rottenberg and Luc Tuymans — to name just a few of the participants - On Reformation and Standards of Thought was an invitation to debate what exactly happened in the early 16th century when concepts of magic, miracle, and divine intervention as epistemologies ceased to square with the burgeoning intellectual integrity of the time. Although the schism with the Roman Catholic Church initiated by Martin Luther and continued by Jean Calvin, Huldrych Zwingli, and other early Protestant Reformers in 16th century Europe had a core theological motivation, many other factors played a part, including the rise of nationalism, erosion of faith in the Papacy and the perceived corruption of the Roman Curia. Added to this was the new learning of the Renaissance and the impact of humanism. The Reformation’s religious aspects were supplemented by ambitious political agendas for power and control that signaled the beginning of the modern era.
By discussing images of power and the power of images DISPUTAZIUNS SUSCH 2017 started a tradition for intellectual encounters, assembling scholars, museum professionals and artists in the remote alpine location to engage in a collective exercise of constructive criticism and potentially to prepare for change.