April 28, 2016 - neue Gesellschaft für bildende Kunst (nGbK) - International open art competition of the nGbK Berlin: Art in the Underground
April 28, 2016

neue Gesellschaft für bildende Kunst (nGbK)

Photo: Birgit Schlieps.

International open art competition of the nGbK Berlin: Art in the Underground

Submission deadline: June 5, 2016


“Mitte in der Pampa (The Middle in Nowhere)”—Art in the Underground
Call for proposals for site-specific works in the area of the Berlin U-Bahn stations along the lines U55 (2016) and U5 (2016/17) between Berlin Main Station and Cottbusser Platz

The aim of the call for proposals of the international, open art competition “Mitte in der Pampa (The Middle in Nowhere)” in the frame of the nGbKs long-term project Art in the Underground is to realise site-specific artworks in the area of the U-Bahn stations of the line U5 and their surroundings.

The U5 currently connects two large-scale projects: the U55 with the new construction of three stations in the historical centre of Berlin and the renovation of the future station “Kienberg” for the International Garden Exhibition IGA 2017 in the district of Marzahn-Hellersdorf. Both endeavours are accompanied by invited and uninvited civic participation and have a significant impact on their respective surroundings.

“Mitte in der Pampa” spatially, socially and politically negotiates the question of how decisions are made in the “centre” that have an effect “in the sticks." What is the relationship between centre and periphery, and what kind of idiosyncrasy lies dormant “in the sticks”?

The competition’s central field of action is the expansive wasteland and meadowland between the U-Bahn station Cottbusser Platz and Carola-Neher-Straße, which is quite popular with the local residents. Next to it lies a refugee center as well as high-rise buildings and a youth club. In temporal and spatial proximity to the IGA – International Garden Exhibition, concepts such as “international," “garden” and “exhibition” are to be examined and questioned from different perspectives. The wasteland is conceived as a “Place Internationale” for exchange, discussion and gathering of the residents in 2016 and 2017 and is to establish new kinds of publics. Basic infrastructure (water, power, internet, signage) will be provided.

The works should deal with the aesthetic, urban and socio-political conditions between the centre and the periphery in Berlin and address the attendant urban, cultural and economic developments. Requested are new forms of urban negotiations processes—both as standalone installations and as interventionist, participatory and/or performative works through which individual artists and/or groups become active on site for shorter or longer periods of time.

The works should be realised in the vicinity of the stations. The sites of the competition are expanded by the wasteland at the U-Bahn station Cottbusser Platz and the work and exhibition space station urbaner kulturen located next to the U-Bahn station Kaulsdorf-Nord. Desirable is an artistic work that conducts an ideas competition with the local residents, as well as works that conceive and realise different forms of appropriation and dialogue regarding the area and its direct surroundings.

The AG Art in the Underground of the nGbK in charge of accompanying all artistic works has been operating the project headquarters station urbaner kulturen in the immediate vicinity of the U-Bahn station in a shop at Cecilienplatz in Hellersdorf since 2014. All submissions to the competition will be exhibited there. In addition, the station urbaner kulturen will serve as an office, meeting and production site for the selected artists upon agreement. The AG will contextualize the selected artworks with a supporting programme and various presentation formats in the station urbaner kulturen and convey them to the neighbours, residents of the district and Berlin’s art audience.

Jury: Stéphane Bauer, Jochen Becker, Anna Gogonjan, Eva Hertzsch, Folke Köbberling, Dejan Markovic, Adam Page, Valeska Peschke, Kathrin Rhomberg


May 6, 3:30pm: Appointment on site for participants of the call for proposals in Kaulsdorf Nord; meeting place: in front of station urbaner kulturen
May 6, 6pm: Opening in the project headquarters: Exhibition: Sebastian Jung: WINZERLA – Kunst als Spurensuche im Schatten des NSU (WINZERLA – Art as a Search for Traces in the Shadow of the NSU)
The artist Sebastian Jung grew up in the large residential complex Jena-Winzerla and lived in the neighbourhood of the racist NSU perpetrators Beate Zschäpe, Uwe Böhnhardt and Uwe Mundlos, who were radicalised there as youths, for ten years. In his current work, he reflects on his childhood experiences in the high-rise settlement with 12,000 inhabitants, and how he was shaped by this environment. (Until June 25, Thursday–Saturday 3–7pm)
May 2016: New release: Publication Was ist draußen? (What is Outside?) Art in the Underground between Hönow and Tierpark 2014–2015, AG Kunst im Untergrund (ed.), Publisher: nGBK, Berlin 2016, 216 pages, ISBN: 978-3-938515-64-8

Project headquarters: station urbaner kulturen
Cecilienplatz 5, 12619 Berlin-Hellersdorf

neue Gesellschaft für bildende Kunst (nGbK)
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