Eisenhüttenstadt, Photo: Sandra Teigte
Filtered by Eisenhüttenstadt
It’s easy to offer culture to people in Berlin, where there are always some visitors who will come to see the show—even if it is extremely difficult, or extremely strange. But what about "forgotten" cities like Eisenhüttenstadt? Will people there also come to see art?
Eisenhüttenstadt is a small city, 120 kilometers away from Berlin, in eastern Brandenburg. It came into existence in 1950 as "Stalinstadt," a socialist model city in the GDR, and many of its inhabitants were employed at the nearby steel mill (which today belongs to ArcelorMittal, the world’s biggest steel company). Since West Germany absorbed the GDR, the city has been shrinking—after reunification about 20,000 people left. Eisenhüttenstadt doesn’t seem to be a beneficiary of the German transformation. The center of the city is spectacular—with its restored Socialist Realist buildings, open and sunny public squares, and broad avenues—albeit a little deserted. And cultural offerings are limited.
The idea of the project is to open a space in the center of Eisenhüttenstadt and conduct cultural activities there. The program is developed by two Berlin-based art spaces—Artists-in-Berlin-Program/DAAD and me Collectors Room Berlin/Olbricht Foundation—who are challenged to be "filtered," questioned, and present in Eisenhüttenstadt through organizing programming in the city. The idea is to act and try to understand the citizens, their real needs, and the situation in the city. What might this bring, if anything, to the residents? And how will it force the Berlin institutions to re-evaluate their own institutional positions?
by Artur Żmijewski
Change of Perspective
me Collectors Room Berlin/Olbricht Foundation
Some fifth graders from the Gustav Falke School in Berlin exchange views with students of the same age from Schönfliesser School in Eisenhüttenstadt on remarkable places and noteworthy pieces of art in their respective cities.
The Berlin students send an object from me Collectors Room’s Wunderkammer in Berlin to Eisenhüttenstadt, and in exchange they receive a cultural artifact from Eisenhüttenstadt. How will these "uprooted" curiosities get adapted to their new surroundings?
Thus begins the search for new settings, an ingenious story, and an exciting analogy of form and materials, which is documented photographically by Jana Ebert (Berlin) and Ben Kaden (Eisenhüttenstadt). The project offers the students the unique opportunity to share their experiences, discoveries, knowledge, and thoughts about art and culture in a creative and thought-provoking context. In the end, they compile their newly acquired "change of perspective" in a photo-text-book and present it to the public.
by Charlotte Esser
The Gustav Falke School has been a partner school of the me Collectors Room Berlin/Olbricht Foundation since 2010.
Satellite Residency in Eisenhüttenstadt
From May to July 2012 the Artists-in-Berlin-Program establishes a Satellite Residency in Eisenhüttenstadt—consisting of an apartment and a studio which can also be used as an event space. International guests currently participating in the Artists-in-Berlin-Program as well as former guests are invited to spend a few days or weeks in Eisenhüttenstadt and work there. There are no requirements connected to this stay. The artists are free to use the city as a retreat, to engage with the architecture of this socialist planned city or, for example, to explore the Lubusz "Voivodeship" (district) beyond the river Oder in Poland. In the course of the project, a common public event takes place in Eisenhüttenstadt. Furthermore, the artists can develop their own methods to approach the local public (with the support of local partners). Meetings are planned with interested people from Eisenhüttenstadt, i.e. historians, politicians, teachers, journalists, people engaged in the cultural sector, or employees of the steel factory that still strongly affects the city.
by Ariane Beyn