Magdalena Kallenberger is a visual artist working across film, photography, installation and text solo and collectively. She holds an MFA (Meisterschüler) in Media Art and a BFA (Diplom) in Visual Communications from the University of Arts Berlin. Between 2007 and 20017 she lived and worked mostly abroad; in Tehran/Iran she held several postgraduate scholarships by DAAD and the Senate of Berlin in the field of artistic research before moving to Cairo/Egypt in 2010. In Cairo, she served as Visiting Professor of Practice at the Department of the Arts at the American University in Cairo (2016-2017) and Lecturer for time-based media (2010-16) at the German University in Cairo. During this time, she co-founded the Cairo-based female artist collective CAIRO BATS and has been an active member ever since.
In autumn 2017 Magdalena Kallenberger moved back to Berlin to focus on her new Ph.D. research entitled “Alltagsheldinnen – (Chrono) Politics of the Maternal”. The same year she initiated “maternal fantasies” an interdisciplinary collective of female artists and mothers seeking to shape the discourse of motherhood through their arts projects. “maternal fantasies” received the Arthur Boskamp Advancement Award 2019/20.
Since 2018 Magdalena Kallenberger is a Ph.D. candidate in artistic research at the Bauhaus University Weimar. She also is a fellow at the Bauhaus Research School and the Friedrich-Ebert Foundation. Her practice-based Ph.D. “Re/Production: Chronopolitics, Affective Labor, Care and the Maternal” takes diverse forms of research materials as a starting point to (re-) position the maternal as a space of social, political, cultural and economic conflict.
What is at stake in her art is the possibility to “appropriate our experiences” (Rosa 2015) in alignment with contemporary themes of radical sociology in capitalism’s post-crisis phase (Dörre, Lessenich, Rosa 2015).
Kallenberger primarily uses the body and self-manufactured objects as a medium to intervene in public (urban) spaces. Her artistic language combines art historical references with autobiographical elements, using humour as a subvertive method, photography, print media and other two-dimensional materials including text are installed in the gallery space in the form of small exhibitions.
In 2018 she was awarded a one-year fellowship by the Swiss Gwärtler Foundation for her project “Alltagsheldinnen“ (Heroines of the Everyday). This work is part of her long-term research project that she has started in 2014 with a growing collection/archive on the representation of motherhood in the arts.
The works that she produced in solo and collective constellations have been shown at Haus der Kulturen der Welt Berlin, nGbK Berlin, alpha nova galerie futura Berlin, Camera Austria Graz, Berlinische Galerie, Bamako African Biennale of Photography, Short Film Festival Oberhausen, Cairotronica – festival of Electronic and New Media arts etc. and got awarded prizes by Bundeszentrale für politische Bildung, Arthur Boskamp Förderpreis 2019/19, 1. Prize, Backup Clip Award Short Filmfestival Weimar etc.