The (new) Berlin Wall

Some hundred meters down from famous „Checkpoint Charlie“ macedonian artist NadaPrlja has erected her „peace wall“ as part of this years 7th Berlin Biennale. Although the general topic of a „wall“ is somewhat delicate in Berlin, the project got the attention for its intention to signifie the imaginatory wall between poor and rich, very well to be seen in Friedrichstraße, where behind Checkpoint Charlie the nice boutiques vanish and are replaced by 1 Euro shops, discounters and cheap beer bars. The artist never wanted her wall to be associated with the actual „Berlin Wall“ – sure everybody does, although her point is made fairly well and the project draws attention to the Kreuzberg side of Friedrichstrasse that is not very much visited by tourists or berliners alike.

Like the original this wall will fall – today, tomorrow, soon. Not because the project is over or the Biennale closes its doors for two years, but rather for the (oh so german!) sake of traffic and commerce (local shop owners did indeed criticise this performative intervention in public space quite rigidly). Sadly one of the better – because indeed discurse impacting – projects of the Biennale will be history now.

Über philippkoch

author and curator, specializing in literature and writing on visual arts
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