What is that?

The Centre for Pending Questions – from so is that to is that so is a political, artistic, and social installation and action by Wolfgang Georgsdorf digitally online on the web and analogously on the entire ground floor of the former Baugewerkeschule Zittau in Saxony/Germany, at the invitation and on behalf of the Städtische Museen Zittau for the project year ” 1000 and your view – from outbreak to departure from the pandemic”

(See also credits)

Questions that originally arise from the phenomenon of the corona pandemic can be asked, commented, evaluated, filtered, edited, and browsed in the Center for Open Questions.

Claims are walls, but questions are not.

Assertions demarcate and restrict, while questions, on the other hand, open up spaces and penetrate the boundaries in order to arrive behind them to further prospects.

Centre for Pending Questions (ZFOF.EU) – from so is that to is that so

How can we endure contradictions? With questions? Are questions the first steps to getting answers? And as long as the answers are not enough for us: Keep on asking?

In the ZFOF you can ask and exhibit any question that the phenomenon and keyword „Corona“ raises, in a narrower or broader sense. These are often not only practical questions, but also philosophical, political, ethical, existential, very fundamental questions.

When introducing new questions, the usual laws and rules of decency and mutual respect apply: no hate messages, no calls for violence, no insults or slurs. „Why am
I angry?“ would then be the question that comes into force for those impulses. But questions that violate these few and simple rules will not be published, but removed.

So be welcome and invited to make each and every one of the seven rooms of the ZFOF your own in your own way as an expanded thinking space, as a working space, as an inspiration space as a resting space, as a research space. The greatest success would be if you feel comfortable here and come up with new ideas and new questions.

The question and the culture of questioning is one of the oldest achievements of our language and culture. Answers and ever more questions are its descendants. The question underlies science. And also art. It can be born of doubt, curiosity or the drive for knowledge. Without questions, we would not have come this far.

The ZFOF is an exhibition and a usable installation that will never be complete, because it is a process and the exhibition of that process: a constantly growing and progressing institution, shaped by the influences and participation of all visitors and capable of widening our spaces of conversation. This will be evident both here in the building and in the lively display of the emerging question landscapes around the clock on the internet.

The questions from the most diverse filter bubbles, belief camps and echo chambers that are continually exhibited here form the foundation, inspiration and beginning to inspire a culture and climate of questioning from a small gravitational field.

The first glance when entering the Centre for Open Questions falls on the luminous bouquet in the blue bay of the foyer, a kind of flower altar – the “bouquet full of questions” is also a pillar of diversity and tolerance, if not of love: this apse or niche of light of the foyer, with the stone column on which stands the wide bowl with the luminous bouquet, is the first message here and the eye-catcher for all those entering – the real atmospheric and visual welcome, a warm welcome: The small secular house chapel with its delicate sky blue and the prominent color fireworks as a view and room-wide round and background of the bouquet. Especially in the dark season, when the already cyclical topic of corona in daily life becomes louder again despite war and climate, this bouquet is strongly illuminated.

Wolfgang Georgsdorf, 2022

The Centre for Pending Questions (ZFOF) is not an exhibition in the strict sense. 

It is an independent museum installation, and as such accessible because you do not face it, but are inside and surrounded by it and can move and stay freely in it;

The ZFOF is participatory, i.e. capable of participation and determined by participation, because it will change and develop through public and thus also through the participation and influence of you as an active guest;

It is interactive because you can react directly to parts of the project, and because parts of the project can react to you;

It is interdisciplinary, because the project touches and concerns different areas of art, life, science, politics, society;

It is analogous because the installation exists as material, representational spaces, together with the air you breathe in it and with everything you can see, touch, hear and smell in it;

It is virtual because it also exists as an intangible, digital edition on the net, under the link zfof.eu;

And the ZFOF is also an intervention, because it intervenes in a social and political process, goes beyond the mandate and gives you the opportunity to intervene.

The Center for Pending Questions is not the aesthetic, contemplative framing or embellishment of a crisis or a problem, but an artistic form of social interaction and modes of understanding for the creative and operational penetration of hardened opinion fronts, filter bubbles, echo chambers, or faith camps.

Wander through the digital or analog rooms of ZFOF. 

To visit the exhibition, the audio guide and telephone system of the Centre for Open Questions are at your disposal. Simply select

+49 3583 5 – 499 399

The ZFOF telephone system complements the printed or online information, as well as part of ZFOF’s accessibility.

When visiting these pages or the exhibition in Zittau/Saxony/Germany: Take a break in between and settle down in one or the other room of the ZFOF to let it work its magic on you together with the content you have recorded until then and – which would be the best thing – finally come to your own thoughts and your own contribution, with which you immortalize yourself in the form of your questions [link to “Ask a question now” in the Fraginator], comments, hints, or comments [link to “Enter comment” in the Fraginator] and see the project grow through your personal influence.

Detailed information about the Centre for Pending Questions can be downloaded here as a pdf.

The Centre for Pending Questions owes itself to a number of essential fundamental questions:

To what extent are allegations walls and to what extent are questions not?

Does a question make you think more than an assertion?

What can questions do that assertions cannot?

Do we stagnate if we are not prepared to review our positions and assumptions at any time, i.e. to question them?

Can there be a higher art of productive doubt than science?

If science ceases to doubt itself, is it still science? 

Does religion ever doubt itself?

When we say so, do we take the strength to ask is that so?

What’s so uncomfortable about questioning our own assumptions?

To what extent do we encourage errors of all kinds and encourage social upheavals and even violent conflicts if we are not prepared to question our positions and assumptions at all times?

Where do we get the strength to doubt our own assumptions at any time?

What can art do that science and politics cannot?

What could art do better than to lead as many individuals as possible to creative thinking and acting?

If cracks run through society, are we called upon to do something about it? 

What means do we have to motivate and facilitate human connectedness and empathy?

Are fake news or alternative facts different from new terms for propaganda?

What is knowledge and science other than dealing with uncertainty in the most educated and intelligent way possible?

Do we all have a conscience? Or just some of us?

Is conscience something that stands above uncertainty?

What is the connection between the weighty concepts of knowledge, uncertainty and conscience? Are these just linguistic similarities?

Is there a greater inner contradiction than uncertainty?

Is there a greater challenge than enduring contradictions?

Are we doing enough to evolve into a more livable society of planetary people?

Are we able to do something with our freedom of personal development?

Is there anything that has no reason?

Is anger a good reason not to want to fathom anything more?

Can we fathom our own anger?

Can we replace our own anger with something that moves us forward sustainably?

Is sustainability more than one of the popular and fashionable words of our time? 

Does material sustainability make any sense without mental or emotional sustainability? Is there a necessary order for this?

How do we gain the strength to admit that change scares us?

If everything has its reason, does it help us to fathom all the causes?

Who or what helps us to distinguish causes and effects from each other where necessary?

Is it necessary to educate us?

Can the problems as a whole be reduced to something other than an educational problem?

Is there knowledge as ultimate validity?

What is certain about what we call knowledge?

Isn’t knowledge a certain kind of belief in the first place?

To what extent is knowledge actually a special variant of faith?

Why is it easier to refute (falsify) an assumption than to prove it?

Is a final proof of an assumption even possible for reasons of logic?

Can an education of the heart replace an education of the mind, and can they be separated from each other at all for a good quality of human coexistence?

Can science be a substitute for religion and vice versa?

To what extent does science have a significance for politics today that religion used to have for politics to justify its decisions?

Do ideologies hinder us more than they benefit us?

Is a well-informed and generally educated, or at least open-minded and inquisitive citizenry – not to mention the education of the heart – the prerequisite for a stable and crisis-proof society, and what other prerequisites are needed for this?

What is citizen science?

How important is citizen science for coping with the future of human life?

Can citizen science ever replace the forms of professional and institutional science?