Those who can no longer wonder and marvel are as if they were dead.
Despite Hans-Jürgen and Helga Müller’s many successful exhibition projects, the booming art market, and above all the increasing commercialisation of art, awakened their need for a sustainable, ethically oriented future perspective, one in which art and aesthetics regain their true meaning.
For them, the central question is how the real decision-makers of our society (politicians, experts from advisory bodies and board members of companies) might be reached and made to recognize the central importance of artistic creativity for any kind of shaping of the future. Through this, decision-makers might themselves participate in social change and ultimately profit from it themselves.
For this purpose, the Müllers envisioned a place based on the unity of nature, culture, art, philosophy and political reflection. Here, people inspired by the experience of this space, created in an artistic spirit, might work together to come up with new ideas for sustainable developments for the future, to participate in decision-making and then to return to their individual work environments.
In 1984 the project “Atlantis – temporary academy for culture, economy, politics and science” was born and from 1985 on it was presented to the public in numerous lectures, preliminary drafts and presentations (e.g. at documenta IX, 1992). Helga and Hans-Jürgen Müller planned this “city of the future” as a gift to society at the turn of the millennium in 2000/2001.
Some architectural designs, among others by Léon Krier (1985) and Frei Otto (1989) were ultimately rejected. From 1993 the realization of an idea began in the southwest of Tenerife under the new name MARIPOSA, this time without fixed plans but rather inspired by the respective spiritus loci.
The name of the cultural park MARIPOSA (Spanish for “butterfly”) symbolizes the transformative power of this place – comparable to the thesis of Edward Lorenz in his chaos theory. The American meteorologist and “father of chaos theory” revolutionized our view of the world just as much as did Albert Einstein or Max Planck. He proposed that a butterfly flapping its wings in Shanghai could theoretically trigger a violent hurricane in New York.
Together with over 80 artists* from all over the world, Hans-Jürgen and Helga Müller designed the MARIPOSA cultural park on Tenerife over a period of twenty years beginning in 1993. The creativity of the participants creates a unique and enchanting complex with works of art, paths, squares, inviting spaces and individual overnight accommodations.
In the year 2000, the first of a series of so-called MARIPOSIEN® took place. At that time, representatives* from politics, economy, social studies and science met to discuss future issues for the city of Essen under the title “Power and Influence – dare synergies” and initiated a groundbreaking urban project.
Since then, the aim of these MARIPOSIEN® has been to organize interdisciplinary encounters of people in responsible social positions who – inspired by the encounter with art, with artists and lateral thinkers and with the beauty of the place – try out new, creative ways of thinking in order to use and implement new ideas fruitfully at their own places of activity.
In 2006, the couple founded the “Education Offensive MARIPOSA”. The goal of this initiative was the sustainable development of new holistic educational concepts. Work on the project continued until 2016. A publication on the results of the project is in progress.
In addition, MARIPOSA hosts conferences, meetings and workshops for all kinds of institutions, companies or consulting firms.
After the death of Hans-Jürgen Müller in 2009, his wife Helga Müller has continued to develop MARIPOSA to this day and has organized numerous MARIPOSIEN® events in recent years.