1989–2019: Politics of Space in the New Berlin
Sep 12, 2019 – Oct 13, 2019
A project in cooperation with ARCH+
Artistic directors: Marius Babias, Anh-Linh Ngo
Curatorial team: Frederick Coulomb, Nora Dünser, Mirko Gatti, Dorothee Hahn, Christian Hiller, Max Kaldenhoff
Project management: Max Kaldenhoff, Arkadij Koscheew
Project coordination: Krisztina Hunya, Christine Rüb
Exhibition architecture: ARCH+ in cooperation with Peter Grundmann
With works by Katalin Gennburg, Guerilla Architects in cooperation with Shahrzad Rahmani and Philine Schneider (video production: OFFscreen Modern Media), Verena Hartbaum, Andrej Holm, Charlotte Malterre-Barthes (with students from Technische Universität Berlin), Daniel Poller, Schroeter & Berger, Florine Schüschke, Sheila Seyfert-Menzel
The end of the bloc confrontation between East and West, heralded by the fall of the Berlin Wall – a turning point that prompted the political scientist Francis Fukuyama to speak of the “end of history” – had quite particular consequences for the urban development in Berlin, where, geographically, the capitalist and the real-socialist world orders directly collided. On the one hand, new political and cultural spaces were opened up; on the other, the fall of the Berlin Wall paved the way for the neo-liberalization of politics. The political intent for reforms was justified by the need to be able to compete with other metropolises. The new spatial policy took place on three levels: Far-reaching administrative reforms made it possible to sell municipal real estate all across the city, and today, the long-term consequences are increasingly putting the housing market and the socio-spatial fabric of the city under pressure. On the architectural level, Berlin Neo-historicism met the need for national identity, but the 1990s debate about architectural reconstruction functioned as an ideological disguise and obscured the aforementioned transformation processes.
Staging Berlin as a cultural hub in the wake of the Berlin banking crisis is an expression of a new urban policy that seeks to inflate the myth of the creative Berlin and establish the city as a global place of longing by means of the targeted valorization of subcultures and countercultures. The exhibition 1989–2019: Politics of Space in the New Berlin outlines the urbanistic and architectural development from the point of view of the supposed “end of history”: How did Berlin become what it is today? Here, the aim is not to achieve completeness in the sense of linear historiography, but to depict partly contradictory processes and narratives that to this day are superimposing and intensifying in Berlin as a constructed city. There is not only one Berlin, but many myths and ideas of what Berlin is supposed to be. The exhibition reflects the perspectives and myths of history, of the market and of creativity.
The exhibition 1989-2019: Politics of Space in the New Berlin
Projects realized especially for the exhibition exemplify various urbanistic policies and their consequences for today’s Berlin. A comprehensive mapping of the privatization of Berlin for the first time visualizes the sale of municipal real estate throughout the past decades. In his Glossar der Privatisierung (Glossary of Privatization), Andrej Holm analyses certain terms that reflect administrative instruments and processes on the basis of which the extensive sale of state-owned real estate was executed. Charlotte Malterre- Barthes and students of the Technical University of Berlin present the real estate portfolio Real Estate of Emergency, which examines around thirty current objects of speculation and exposes the interests behind them. Guerilla Architects examine the language of the speculative housing market by translating a glossary of the real estate language into film. Schroeter & Berger deal with the creativity dispositif of the municipal marketing campaign be Berlin and adapt its aesthetics by means of collage, montage and détournement. Based on a research project by architectural theoretician Verena Hartbaum, who systematically explored Berlin’s historicizing architecture, Daniel Poller recorded the vast number of new buildings of the last three decades in a photo documentation in order to demonstrate social mechanisms of distinction and exclusion on the basis of their formal principles. With his video installation, Poller creates the image of a real existing Berlin that has chosen the past as its social objective.
Public editorial office
ARCH+ is an independent magazine for architecture and urbanism. Founded in the wake of the 1968 awakening, it focuses on the critical reflection of the social aspirations of architecture. Each issue gives an in-depth examination of a topic and addresses current discussions in other disciplines with regard to architectural and urbanistic issues. For the time of the exhibition, ARCH+ will relocate its editorial offices to Neuer Berliner Kunstverein in order to create an issue, based on the exhibition and the discourse program, that seeks to address the discursive and political changes of recent times as well as the current paradigm of the spatial policy in Berlin. As already realized during documenta 12 (2007), ARCH+ transforms an exhibition space into a public editorial office and combines artistic positions with the production of critical theory.
Selective glimpses into the history, present and future of the city are supposed to sound out what the urban Berlin consists of today. Politicians, architects, urban theorists, artists and activists will be discussing the politics of space in the New Berlin: What to do about historically amnesiac ambitions? What is the current constitution of urban social movements, how can their relationship to party politics be apprehended in terms of emancipation? What kind of associations, planning approaches and architectures are needed to create a Berlin that is open and based on solidarity?
Thursday, September 19, 2019, 7 pm
Mythos des Marktes (The Myth of the Market) I
Discussion with Daniela Brahm (artist, ExRotaprint, Berlin), Andrej Holm (sociologist, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin), Karin Lenhart-Roth (political scientist, Hochschule Hannover), Florine Schüschke (urban researcher, Berlin), Steffen Zillich (politician, Berlin)
Thursday, September 26, 2019, 7 pm
Mythos der Geschichte (The Myth of History)
Discussion with Adrian von Buttlar (art historian, Technische Universität Berlin), Michael S. Falser (art historian, Heidelberg University), Verena Hartbaum (architectural theorist, University of Stuttgart), Daniel Poller (artist, Berlin)
Wednesday, October 2, 2019, 7 pm
Mythos der Kreativität (The Myth of Creativity)
Discussion with Florian Hertweck (architect, University of Luxemburg), MetroZones – Center for Urban Affairs (Berlin), Nina Scholz (journalist and author, Berlin), Schroeter & Berger (designers, Berlin)
Tuesday, October 8, 2019, 8 pm
Die Inszenierung des Urbanen (The Staging of the Urban Element)
Screening of works from the n.b.k. Video-Forum collection, selected by Kristina Paustian (n.b.k. Video-Forum), with a commentary by Sophia Gräfe (media and cultural scientist, Leibniz Center for Literary and Cultural Research, Berlin)
Films by Denis Beaubois, in the event of Amnesia the city will recall… (1997); Arno Brandlhuber / Christopher Roth, Are You Happy? (2012); KP Brehmer, Walkings Nr. 1–6 (1969–1970); Niklas Goldbach, Habitat C3B (2008); Allan Kaprow, Sweet Wall (1970); Holly Zausner, The Beginning (2003)
Thursday, October 10, 2019, 7 pm
Mythos des Marktes (The Myth of the Market) II
Discussion with Arno Brandlhuber (architect, Berlin, Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule Zürich), Katalin Gennburg (politician, Berlin), Guerilla Architects (Berlin), Charlotte Malterre-Barthes (architect and urban designer, TU Berlin / ETH Zürich), Birgit Möhring (general manager Berliner Immobilienmanagement GmbH, Berlin), Philine Schneider (architect and curator, Berlin)
Free admission to all events