Elisabeth-Norgall-Prize awardee 2022
Dr. Gerlinde Förster (Germany)
The art historian, art mediator and curator Dr. Gerlinde Foerster was born in Dresden in 1952. She was already introduced to art, music and theater during her childhood. Through the youth club of the State Art Collections in Dresden, she came into close contact with Dresden's most famous galleries. Inspired by this environment, she studied art science at the Humboldt University, which also included philosophy, cultural theory, archeology and architectural history. In 1975 she gratuated with a diploma. She worked in research, wrote her doctorate on the artistic avant-garde in Dresden after the First World War, published and gave lectures. The focus of her lectures and publishing work was the fine arts in the GDR, the reception of modern art and architecture, 20th century art and problems of appropriation and dissemination of cultural heritage.
After the German reunification, she set up the GEDOK Brandenburg from 1994 onwards.
This is the Brandenburg regional association within GEDOK, the oldest and largest association for women artists. The association works across the disciplines and unites women artists from the various sections: VisualArts, AppliedArts/Art Design, Literature, Music, Interdisciplinary Arts/Performing Arts. GEDOK was founded in Hamburg in 1926 by the Jewish patron Ida Dehmel (1870-1942) as the “Association of German and Austrian Art Associations of all Art Genres”. Her concern was to promote the artistic talents of women. The GEDOK is recognized as a non-profit association and receives financial resources from contributions, donations and project-related grants.
Since 1998, GEDOK Brandenburg has been the sponsor of the "Kunstflügel" gallery in Rangsdorf in the south of Berlin, where Gerlinde Förster lives. The aim of the commitment is to make women artists of the various fields of work known to the public and to support them in the realisation their professional interests. The promotion of artistic activity takes place through exhibitions, readings, concerts, performances, interdisciplinary art projects, professional support, participation in various committees and networks as well as an effective public relations work. Thanks to Gerlinde Förster's commitment and dedication, GEDOK-Brandenburg quickly developed into the largest regional association in the new federal states. In 2019, Gerlinde Förster was awarded the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany for her many years of voluntary commitment and her services to the promotion of women's artistic work. During the ceremonial presentation of the Federal Medal of Merit the Minister for Science and Culture of Brandenburg, Martina Münch, praised the laureate: "Your multi-layered view of art, your outstanding expertise, your creativity and your mindfulness are greatly appreciated."
In addition to her voluntary work, Gerlinde Förster works as a freelance curator, art mediator, author and lecturer.
Dr. Förster is married with the mathematician Dr. Matthias Förster, they have two grown-up children.