Art and culture have in many ways become key motors of innovative and successful urban design and planning, without which the world’s metropoles would no longer be worthy of the name. The architectural exhibition Culture:City encouraged to think consistently about the future of cities from this perspective. The collection curated by Matthias Sauerbruch for the Akademie der Künste took a critical eye to the relationship between architecture and the social reality of the 21st century and showed the impact of art and culture on cities and architecture. The selection of international examples presented–ranging from spectacular architectural and artistic projects, via the creative reuse of empty buildings and city areas, through to citizens’ initiatives–opened up a panorama of constructed concretisation of culture thus allowing not only to take stock of the surroundings but also to evaluate and assess each individual case.
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? Beyond the physical presentation of plans and models, the exhibition also offered its visitors a special insight: video tours completed with commentary as well as in-depth background information on tablet computers.
These films d’auteur have been prepared by graduates of the German Film and Television Academy in Berlin. In this manner, it was possible to gain three differing perspectives in the exhibition room: that of the architect, that of the curator and that of the filmmaker.
Together with a number of assistants and volunteers as part of the Chair led by Matthias Ballestrem, the model for a parking garage in Berlin-Mitte has been physically represented in its most current condition of facing demolition to be replaced by a tabula rasa housing block. For the further research and documentation of the site, the team additionally filmed, screened and hosted a public event with performing arts, sound installations and open studio spaces.
with Chair of Prof. Leibinger
for Culture:City (Akademie der Künste)