Frankfurt Rhein-Main

Frankfurt Rhein-Main

PMCA - Peripheral Museum of Contemporary Art

Monday 20 – Friday 31 March 2017

What constitutes a museum today in the 21st century?

This notion forms the base to all arising questions within the AA School Visiting Program in Frankfurt/Rhein Main. The supreme discipline for an architect, a cultural building, will not be thought as a formalistic exercise, but rather as a neo-political question, a sociological development and territorial connection; allowing the design to form the answers.
Today’s central European landscape can be defined as a multiple image of a fragmented space with little dynamics within its territorial elements. A clear division towards the rural areas is taking place, resulting in a cultural split with the metropolitan space. While the rural area is economically still strongly positioned, it tends to loose its social and cultural voice resulting in isolation.
With a focus on the Rhein-Main area, it´s central power-house Frankfurt and the surrounding uplands, we aim at identifying, conceptualizing and realizing cross territorial supply chains to develop the Peripheral Museum of Contemporary Art. The museum exemplifies a cultural network through architectural interventions, which will redefine territorial strategies connecting the metropolitan with the rural areas and vice versa to expand an exchange beyond political and economical boundaries.
Each year we focus on a different landscape and thematic strategy, developing various respective scenarios. Thereby, a unified policy with different levels of intensifications, new relations and negotiations within the territories and across the metropolitan space will be formed - the Peripheral Museum of Contemporary Art // PMCA.
Last year 2 distinct visions for the Spessart, one of Germanys uplands close to Frankfurt,  have been thought through by the students and presented in form of a public exhibition at Salon Kennedy in Frankfurt.
2016 will focus on the “Flughafen Wald“, Airport Forest an inner buffer zone, in the middle of the Metropolitan and one of the busiest transport hubs in central Europe.

The program is organized in  a two-stage process:
Stage 1: Participants gain an insight to the current museum discourse, coupled with their own understanding of this years theme "view".
This new theoretical understanding will be presented and discussed with leading people from the fields of architecture, art and museums at the symposium, forming the individual AA Frankfurt briefs.
Stage 2: This particular way of thinking about museum and individually developed language will be applied to this years site in order to develop collectively 1-3 museum strategies.
AA Frankfurt performs as a team-based program where constant discussions, collaborations and research is essential.
The AAVS Frnakfurt works in close collaboraiton with University of Applied Sciences, Frankfurt.

Prominent Features of the workshop
Theoretical understanding: the Peripheral Museum of Contemporary Art is not a technical workshop, but a unique and rare visiting school experience, where the school operates on the highly acclaimed AA teaching philosophy, pushing students to develop a thesis, self assess, critique and reflect their work.
Symposium: In the middle of the workshop a symposium consisting of lectures, presentations and discussions will be organized. This symposium explores a wide array of architectural and cultural topics. Students are encouraged to establish 1:1 discussions with the invited leading key people from the fields or art and architecture.
Cultural events: The first week will be characterized by visits to cultural institutions and relevant guided museum tours. The second week will include site visits and trips  to the territory. These events will broaden a cultural awareness, give insights into the system and provide practical components to establish the target and brief of the  visiting school..
Exhibition/Publication: The theoretical and practical research of the visiting school will coincide in a public exhibition, showcasing the students briefs, models and research outcome, held at Salon Kennedy in Frankfurt. Like with the past workshop the aim is that the research will be compiled and edited in a publication afterwards.
Participants will receive a certificate from the AA upon completion of the program.


1) The AA Visting School Frankfurt Rhein-Main welcomes students from various academic backgrounds beyond architecture, i.e. fine arts, art history, curatorial studies, critical thinking, etc.

You can make an application by completing the online application found under ‘Links and Downloads’ on the AA Visiting School page. If you are not able to make an online application, email for instructions to pay by bank transfer. 

2) Once you complete the online application and make a full payment, you are registered to the program.

All participants traveling from abroad are responsible for securing any visa required, and are advised to contact their home embassy early. After payment of fees, the AA School can provide a letter confirming participation in the workshop.

Continued Link to Programme Site :


The AA Visiting School requires a fee of £695 per participant, which includes a £60 Visiting membership fee.

Should you wish to enhance your membership, a Subscribing Membership is available at an additional £70 (£130 in total), full details of which can be found at:

The deadline for applications is 6th March 2017.

For group discounts please email

Fees do not include flights or accommodation, but accommodation options can be advised. Students need to bring their own laptops, digital equipment (especially photocamera; eventually cam-corder) and model making tools. Please ensure this equipment is covered by your own insurance as the AA takes no responsibility for items lost or stolen at the workshop.

Friedrich Gräfling 

Friedrich Gräfling acts at the interface of architecture, art and culture. Completed architectural projects include classical residential buildings as well as the implementation of award-winning projects such as „Schloss Wiesen“ and „Fachwerkhaus Krombach“. Through the collaboration with leading international artists, he already organized numerous institutional as well as commercial exhibitions. His own projects have been shown at Interieur Kortijk, Belgien, at the Geidai, Tokyo University oft he Arts, the Royal Academy of Arts as well as the London Festival of Architecture 2103 amongst others. Lately, he has finished his architectural studies at the Architectural Association in London with Honours and has been nominated for the 2013 RIBA Silver President`s Medal.

Johanna Stemmler

Johanna Stemmler holds a Bachelor degree in International Business from the School of Business and Economics, Maastricht, NL and a Master degree in Contemporary Art History from the Sothebys Institute of Art, London. Her interest lies in questioning and exploring given structures and phenomena within the art system and exploring new ways of displaying art, highlighting its surrounding architecture. This is consolidated academically in her MA thesis on the “Myth of Berlin” since the 1990s, which she completed with distinction as well as physically in numerous exhibitions that she curated or strategically organized, displaying intervention between art and architecture.

Johanna & Friedrich are the directors of Cultural Avenue GmbH, the agency for cultural projects and recently founded “Kunstverein Wiesen”, a non-for profit art museum outside of Frankfurt.

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Programme Heads
Friedrich Gräfling
Johanna Stemmler

Visiting School Director

Christopher Pierce

T +44 20 7887 4014
F +44 20 7414 0782

Links & Downloads

Online application

Programme site



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