Berlin Roundup
              Matthew Evans
              Berlin affluence is an oxymoron that might describe something in the big gap between pilsner and champagne, or pork schnitzel and sous-vide. Events like Berlin Art Week and its commercial fair abc art berlin contemporary have been pushing the German capital onto the national and international buyers’ tour for nine years now. It remains an odd positioning, as Berlin isn’t an obviously digestible city for many collectors; it lacks their creature comforts: the ubiquity of restricted access and unaffordable prices with enough locals who can afford to keep them that way. And art fairs (not to be confused with life) are most successful—and most distracting—when the rich feel hungry and foot the bill for the entertainment. But it’s an important exercise to distinguish between wealth and security (not to be confused with fear). The former is an uncertain orgasm of contrasts, which has become aesthetic cliché, while the latter is more interesting and maybe even radical today. Without the pressure (and pleasure) of fast and fat capital in recent history, Berlin has profited from this advantage, and although events like abc might be experimenting to revise that, the city still remains at one remove, which is a privilege, because the ...
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