Feature, 07.02.2014

STUDIO MANUEAL RAEDER – LA LETRA E ESTÁ POR DOQUIER
Galerie Neu
13.02. – 15.03.2014

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Photo: Stefan Korte

In November 2012, Studio Manuel Raeder began developing the three display structures and furniture that make up La letra E está por doquier (The Letter E is everywhere) with fellow studio designer Santiago da Silva for Centro de Diseño de Oaxaca. As the first public institution of its kind in Mexico, it understands design as a tool for social change and, coinciding with the ethos of Studio Manuel Raeder, follows the understanding that form relates to production and production to alternative economic relations based on dialogue and the exchange of ideas. As a result the furniture features seating made out of plastic, wooden stools and upturned buckets, as well as the ubiquitous white plastic Monobloc chairs, reconfigured and covered with woven palm leaf. The modular cake table was produced in collaboration with a furniture factory and local wood producers in Oaxaca. Additionally the cubic structures display a selection of catalogues and artists’ books produced by Studio Manuel Raeder over the past ten years, as well as collected and found objects such as art wares, which the designers collected from their stay in Mexico.

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Photos: Stefan Korte

GALERIE NEU,  STUDIO MANUEL RAEDER

Feature, 05.02.2014

Vom ICC zum ICCC
International Center for Contemporary Culture Berlin

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Something Fantastic © ICC Berlin

Das ICC ist ein Gesamtkunstwerk, von der riesigen Aluminiumhülle bis zum Leitsystem im Inneren, den Türgriffen und Garderobenhaken. Es ist eines der erfolgreichsten, architektonisch mutigsten, und international bedeutendsten Gebäude Berlins. Vor 35 Jahren, am 2. April 1979 wurde der von Ralf Schüler und Ursulina Schüler-Witte geplante Bau eröffnet.

Das im Auftrag einer international operierenden Investorengruppe erstellte Konzept würde dafür sorgen, dass dies so bleibt und dass diese einmalige Ikone des 20. Jahrhunderts bewahrt, in ihrer Kompetenz bestätigt, und zugleich neu herausgefordert wird. Das ICC könnte zum ICCC werden, einem Zentrum für zeitgenössische Kultur in Berlin – für die Berliner und die internationale Öffentlichkeit: Dialog, Diskurs und Praxis werden hier verdichtet und sichtbar gemacht. Eine konzeptionelle sowie organisatorische Neuausrichtung schöpft die vorhandenen räumlichen und wirtschaftlichen Potenziale endlich voll aus. Das Nutzungskonzept basiert auf einer Synergie aus Konferenz- und Kongressbetrieb, Veranstaltungsort für Darstellende und Bildende Künste, Restaurant und Cafés, Hotel, Kunstschaulager, Black- und White Cubes, Fachhandel für Kunst und Medien sowie temporären Co-Working Spaces, Ateliers und Tagungsräumen.

What is needed is a catalyst for the meeting of worlds that represents and is part of our journey in to the future. The first phase of post-Wall Berlin, the art colonisation of the city, is almost complete. Now we need to look towards a new, technically orientated consciousness and what better hub for that endeavour than the ICCC? A mothership for the merging of two cultures in the third industrial age. The architecture of the ICC, the ship-like form that shouts “space” rather than “sea” are all perfect companions to this journey. Sophie Lovell (Author & Editor-in-Chief, uncube magazine)

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Photos: © ICC Berlin

Feature, 24.10.2013

THE 89PLUS RESOURCES
89plus and the LUMA Foundation are partnering to present the 89
plus Resources Workshop and Panel in Zurich
27.10. – 28.10.2013

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Credits: Alessandro Bava, Zine cover Issue 3 | Alessandro Bava, bahrain collage2lumia

89plus is a long term, multi-platform research project, co-founded and co-curated by Simon Castets and Hans Ulrich Obrist, mapping the generation of innovators born in and after 1989. The 89plus Resources Workshop and Panel at LUMA is the first event to be structured around a single theme, Resources, engaging the disciplines of art, architecture, literature, science, and technology in a focused conversation. Led by Simon Castets and Hans Ulrich Obrist a Workshop will bring together environmental activists and artists from the 89plus generation along with experts in resources and sustainable development. The panel discussion will address the potential of new technologies for positive environmental and social change in a world of declining natural resources.

Credit: Takeshi Shiomitsu, cleanroom study (i keep on falling falling)

Credit: Takeshi Shiomitsu, cleanroom study (i keep on falling falling)

89PLUS

Feature, 04.09.2013

SOU FUJIMOTO – FUTUROSPECTIVE ARCHITECTURE
CCB – Garagem Sul, Lisbon
10.09. – 17.11.2013

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Credits: House N by Sou Fujimoto Architects, Photo: © Iwan Baan |

Constantly shifting relationships between interior and exterior is one of Sou Fujimoto’s intellectual leitmotifs – which can be discovered in his first monographic exhibition in Europe Futurospective Architecture, presented in Lisbon at the architecture gallery Garagem Sul. Originally conceived by the Kunsthalle Bielefeld, the show displays texts, models and photographs documented and commented on by the architect himself, who seeks to offer more than a retrospective of his buildings and architectural work realized thus far, and to think the architecture of the future akin to a forest. In his words Architecture emerges where the flow is intensified.

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SOU FUJIMOTO, KUNSTHALLE BIELEFELD, GARAGEM SUL

Feature, 04.09.2013

JEUNES COMMISSAIRES
Institut français / Bureau des Arts plastiques initiates young curators’ program

JEUNES COMMISSAIRES establishes new forms of supporting young curators in France and Germany. The program focuses on aiding in their professional integration and accompanies their first steps into the international art world. Serving as a platform for discourse and experience, JEUNES COMMISSAIRES not only offers opportunities for practical intervention within professional structures but also links between young curators and experts for a direct and long-term exchange. Alongside get-togethers and conferences with different curators and directors from Berlin’s art institutions, the participants will also meet independent, progressive curators and will conduct studio visits. The website www.jeunescommissaires.de not only allows insight in the workshop via photo documentations, but portrays its participants in interviews on their curatorial activities and their expectations on the program.

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INSTITUT FRANCAIS

Feature, 29.08.2013

WE-TRADERS | SWAPPING CRISES FOR CITY
Goethe-Institut Madrid, Lissabon, Toulouse, Torino, Berlin
September 2013 – November 2014

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Citizens across Europe are currently taking the initiative to re-appropriate urban space. A group of neighbours transforms wasteland into public space. Garden plot owners open their grounds to unemployed youths to test their small-scale business ideas. Communities are becoming patrons where they were once supplicants. Identified as “We-Traders” they redefine the relation between value, profit and public good and are able to motivate fellow citizens to follow suit. They respond to crisis in several arenas of urban life, be it economic, social or ecological and diffuse the boundaries between buyers and sellers: consumers become co-producers. Through interactive forums, workshops and exhibitions the project connects initiatives by artists, designers, architects and activists from Lisbon, Madrid, Toulouse, Turin and Berlin, where the current crisis manifests different facets from empty coffers and social polarisation to a lack of civic sense as a result of excessive growth.

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WE TRADERS

Feature, 01.06.2013

WINTER – CENTRAL ASIAN PAVILION
55th International Art Exhibition – La Biennale di Venzia
01.06. – 23.11.2013

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Credit: Ikuru Kuwajima, from the series Astana Winter Urbanscapes, 2010-2011

WINTER, the Central Asian Pavilion, unfolds its concept through six artistic positions and discursive statements, staged in the Pavilion by artists from Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan. The site-specific installation ‘Breathe Quietly’ by Vyacheslav Akhunov originates in a sketch from 1976 as an unrealised public monument, satirically reflecting the culture of intimidation and state propaganda at the time. By exhibiting this piece today, the artist invites viewers to see the present situation in Uzbekistan, through the lens of the Soviet period. Other works, such as Saodat Ismailova’s double projection video, Zukhra and Aza Shade’s film ‘The Disappearing City’ explores the role of women in contemporary Central Asia, where tradition still plays a major role.

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Credit: Aza Shade, The Disappearing City, 2011, film still

Ikuru Kuwajima’s photographic series ‘Astana Winter Urbanscapes’ and Kamilla Kurmanbekova & Erlan Tuyakov’s site-specific installation ‘Zhol’, explore the field of architecture, as being subject to appropriation by ideology. Kuwajima documents the recent architectural developments in Astana, while Kurmanbekova & Tuyakov re-interpret the classic yurt into an architectural installation and transitory passage. Sergey Chutkov & Anton Rodin’s collaborative project ‘Letters from Tajikistan’ was made possible through an open call for letters across a broad strata of Tajik society, resulting in a semantic map of Tajik and Central Asian realities. The Pavilion opened to the art world during the preview of the Biennale di Venezia, with the discussion forum ‘Perspectives Beyond Stagnation’, organized in partnership with LIAF (Lofoten International Art Festival). Invited guest speakers, Gopal Balakrishnan and Aaron Schuster addressed issues relating to themes of exhibition, such as the convolutions of capitalism, transgression and constraint.

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Credits: Ikuru Kuwajima, from the series “Astana Winter Urbanscapes,” 2010-2011 | Vyacheslav Akhunov, Breath quietly. Courtesy of the artist.

LA BIENNALE DI VENEZIA

Feature, 12.03.2013

CULTURE:CITY
Akademie der Künste, Berlin
15.03. – 26.05.2013

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Credit: Inner-City Arts, Los Angeles, 2008 – Community centre / art school – Architect: Michael Maltzan Architecture – Photo: Iwan Baan; Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris, 1977

The exhibition Culture:City encourages everyone to think consistently about the future of our cities and takes a critical eye to the relationship between architecture and the social reality of the 21st century, showing the impact of art and culture on cities and architecture. The selection of international examples presented – ranging from spectacular architectural and art projects, via the creative reuse of empty buildings and city areas, through to citizens’ initiatives – opens up a panorama of constructed concretisation of culture thus allowing us not only to take stock of the surroundings but also to evaluate and assess each individual case.

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Credit (from left to right): Architects: Studio Piano & Rogers, architects (Renzo Piano and Richard Rogers) – Courtesy: RPBW, Renzo Piano Building Workshop  |  Detroit SOUP – A monthly dinner funding micro-grants for creative projects in Detroit. – Photo: David Lewinski

Does the social, cultural and architectural rootedness in the city work and does this lead to new forms of cultural production? Or does the construction project merely represent a symbol strong on marketing, yet another island in a city’s public spaces characterised by increasing fragmentation?

The debate thus triggered in the exhibition, curated by Matthias Sauerbruch, is continued in the form of lectures, film screenings, concerts, sound installations and conferences a.o. with Jacques Herzog, Peter Cook, Patrick Bouchain, Peter Eisenman, Selgas Cano Arquitectos a.o. to Berlin.

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Credit: Filmstill: Modern Times – Director: Cyril Amon Schäublin – Building: SANAA-Gebäude, Standort der Folkwang Universität der Künste – © Cyril Amon Schäublin

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Credit: Filmstill: After hours – Director: Steffen Köhn – Building: Berghain – © Phillip Kaminiak

CULTURE: CITY, AKADEMIE DER KÜNSTE

Feature, 01.11.2012

GOETHE SALON LISBON
International colloquium on ephemeral, nomadic
and performance architecture
02. – 03.11.2012

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Credit: Julia Albani, “Model Produced for the Goethe Salon”, Lisbon, (2012)

On the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the Goethe-Institut in Portugal, Lisbon-based architects Barbas Lopes have been invited to design the Goethe Salon, a pavilion which articulates and celebrates a temporary structure and platform sited in the tropical garden of the Goethe Institute’s central location in the city of Lisbon. The pavilion project was catalyst of the International colloquium this November in the Institut Français and Goethe-Institut in Lisbon with Patrick Bouchain (Paris), Patrícia Barbas + Diogo Lopes (Lisbon), Alex Schweder (NY/Berlin/London), Magnus Nilsson + Ralf Pflugfelder (London/Berlin), Torsten Blume (Leipzig), Tim Simon (Berlin), João Quintela (Madrid/Lisbon) and Julia Albani (Lisbon/Berlin).

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BARBAS LOPES

Feature, 01.09.2012

THALIA THEATRE
Gonçalo Byrne Arquitectos + Barbas Lopes Arquitectos
Lisbon, 2009 – 2012

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Photo ©DMF

Built in the outskirts of Lisbon in the 1840s for the Count of Farrobo, a lover of the arts, to host theatre and opera shows as well as wild parties, the Thalia has been in ruins for more than 100 years after a fire in 1862 destroyed most parts of the luxurious architecture. Now Lisbon based architects Gonçalo Byrne Arquitectos & Barbas Lopes Arquitectos reconverted it into a multipurpose space commissioned by the Portuguese Ministry of Education and Science. They covered the remaining walls with a shell of terracotta concrete while the interior remains in its original condition and combining the old and new parts of the building into an urban ensemble with views to the nearby exotic Zoo. The original Latin inscription, “Hic Mores Hominum Castigantur,” was placed once again at the tympanum of the main façade spelling out the motto of Thalia: “Here the deeds of men shall be punished.”

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Photos ©DMF

BARBAS LOPES