The offering is not only a central conceptual construct in Biblical narratives, it is also to be found as a motif in all of the major world religions. This exhibition places itself in this tradition, however, it does so without remaining frozen in retrospective mode. Instead, it will deal with the question of what relevance making offerings and giving could have today. The conceptual space that unfolds around the offering opens on to numerous societal fields: politics, economics, sociology, theology. Here the offering and the gift can equally be loving or subversive. Either way, they have the power to set people, things and structures in motion.
The gift is a provocation for our capitalistic system, oriented ever more strongly towards thinking purely in terms of efficiency; at the same time it is an implicit and actually even a driving element of this system. In spite of the increasing dominance of greed and egoisms, it seems that – for many people – giving is simpler than taking. But it is not that simple, at least not for Jacques Derrida, who defines the gift paradoxically: “If I give what I can give, if I give what I have and what I can give, I’m not giving.”