Europe is not a continent, but a « tip of Asia » (Paul Valéry), with numerous maritime façades spanning the distance from the Great North to the Atlantic Ocean and the Méditerranean Sea.
By land as well as by sea, Europe lives its history and shapes itself in a fluid space compising all kinds of exchanges and interconnections. Violent or peaceful, they forge cultural space of exceptional richness. That space has never been frozen: it has never stopped integrating outside elements, while diffusing into the world material or immaterialelements born from this amalgam.Europe illustrates acomplex systemthat has evolvedat the discretion of constantly modified relationships, be they scientific, technological, economic or political, in order to create new horizons.
The age-old Europe we known begins in the « Orient », the zone encompassing today’s Syria, Israel and Lebanon. It is from there, not from Rome, that the « three magi kings» came to discover the baby Jesus. From the Far East to the the North, multiple invasions trampled the ground of this tip of Asia leaving bellicose traces. Yet none of those foundational currents played an exclusive role, given how Europe was able to assimilate, transform, integrate very diverse elements by renewing and transmitting them. The European culture has never ceased to be a vectorof transmission: scientific, political (e.g., the concept of democracy)or philosophical (e.g., respect for human rights with universal reach).
Europe seduces with its cultural richness, like the development of natural beauty (geographical sites), the creation of artistic beauty (cathedrals, churches, châteaux, urban architecture, museums,exhibitions, etc.), or the development of ideas that have forged such fundamental humanistic values as liberty, respect for difference,the common good, human rights, democracy, and the rule of law.
Europe is an open space that knows how to accept diversity and the need for perpetual transformation. To achieve these goals it juggles different methodologies, like the transcendence of national boundaries (e.g., a commonresponsibility among states), as opposed to a subsidiary method (e.g., an action close to home open to dialogue and led by people who know how to respect local particularities) Both methodologies are complementary. But let us not forget that every innovation can entail both the approval and the opposition of those who feel themselves excluded.
Evolution imposes itself in all domains, in all spaces, and most especially within a technological context of fast transformation (e.g., the digital revolution). Europe has the avantage of a long and fruitful experience that make it a useful source of ideas. A special factor of succes in this process ofnecessary transformation is culture : both created and transmitted culture. Not surprisingly, since the cultural message (e.g.,musical, pictorial or sculptural) has the avantage of being understood by a lot of people, it is universal in nature. Music created, played, heard, sung, danced … is practiced the world over; it touches young and old, rich and poor, educated or uneducated alike, as well as all circumstances whether joyful or sad. A painting, a sculpture, an installation (framing space) can seduce or interest anyone, even those without special learning or knowledge. In both of these artistic cases consciousness comes simultansouly from emotion and reason. These two components are both personal and universal, underscoring their power and impact on social life.
Susanne Kessler is witness to this universal force of creativity and emotion, being marked by a fortunate integration of diverse conditions illustrated by a life rich in artistic experiences (e.g., CV). German by birth (in Wuppertal) and Italian by mariage, with ateliers in both Rome and Berlin, Kessler has devoted herself laregely to painting, but also to sculpture and installations. She travels the world from west to east, north to south, applying her enormous curiosity to understanding what really matters in life and what needs to be changed. Her works are the expression of this mix of emotion and reason, this need to suggest transformations that leave her viewers the possibility of understanding the environment that surrounds them according to their own sensibility.