Texte Zur Kunst #94

Over the past years, Berlin has become an important center for the international production of art and theory. English is firmly entrenched as its second language, and it attracts an unending inflow of newcomers. An informal economy, ample resources of time and space, the intense debates that are said to take place here, and its bohemian aura are still crucial to its attractiveness. But doesn’t Berlin’s allure derive from expectations created by realities of the 1990s and 2000s that no longer exist? Berlin’s current remodeling in line with a representational and economic agenda was already being planned as others still put their faith in the transgressive potential of parallel “underground” worlds. It is time for an assessment without nostalgia or resignation: for a Berlin Update.

This issue of TEXTE ZUR KUNST investigates recent developments in Berlin that also stand paradigmatically for structural transformations of the art world, academia, and the general conditions of life and work. As economization and flexibilization, along with formerly ‘alternative’ project culture, are spreading to the core of institutions, the interrelation between the public sphere, the city, knowledge, and the markets changes drastically. Our authors discuss the conditions artists and curators face when working in and outside of Berlin’s art institutions; they examine the bohemian art scene’s tendency to blend into the VIP zone that has formed in recent years; they criticize the exhibition and collection politics of Berlin’s museums; and they investigate new tendencies and sites in the production of theory, art, music, and nightlife in the city. And not at last we ask what remains of the local in a globally networked (art) world.

Plus a picture spread by Calla Henkel and Max Pitegoff and reviews from Berlin, Chicago, Copenhagen, Frankfurt/M., Geneva, New York, Siegen, Stuttgart, and Zurich. Exclusive new artists’ editions by Axel Hütte and K.O. Götz.

English content:


Main Section

Isabelle Graw
“The Myth of Remoteness from the Market. Notes on Berlin’s Rise as an Art Metropolis”

“Under the Shadow of Projects”
A roundtable discussion with Heike-Karin Föll, Juan Gaitán, Christoph Gurk and Florian Wüst, moderated by Philipp Ekardt and Hanna Magauer

Susanne von Falkenhausen
“Statement on the Exhibition and Collection Politics of the Berlin National Gallery”

“Berlin Theory”
A survey with Barbara Wittmann, Alexander García Düttmann, Frank Ruda, Peter Geimer and Maria Muhle

Philipp Ekardt
“The New Pragmatists. On Times and New Theater”

Pablo Larios
“Blackout. On White Material Records”

Paul Feigelfeld
“The Cloud Over Berlin. Two Remarks on the Archaeology and Present of Digital Rights”

Short Cuts

“On the Significance of Textiles in Contemporary Thought and Praxis”
A survey by S. Buchmann and R. Frank with T. Smith, A. Mendizabal, M. Kapustka/A. Reineke/A. Röhl/T. Weddigen, J. Raum, L. Antunes, K. Kouoh, I. Below


John Beeson
“Where Failure is Proof of Wrongdoing”
On The Essential Ellen Willis

Gili Tal
“The Place Beyond One’s Prime”
On Timothy Davies at Sandy Brown, Berlin

Jenni Sorkin
“Still Waiting”
On Faith Wilding at Threewalls, Chicago

Andrew Stefan Weiner
“Photoconceptualism Pure and Impure”
On Christopher Williams at the Art Institute of Chicago

Carson Chan
“Growers and Showers”
On Eddie Peake at Peres Projects, Berlin

Brigid Doherty
“Titles and Compositions”
On Rosemarie Trockel at Gladstone Gallery, New York

Sven Lütticken
“A Retrospective With Eight Legs”
On Superflex at Kunsthal Charlottenborg, Copenhagen

Piper Marshall
“The Costliness of Our Attachments”
On Bad Conscience at Metro Pictures, New York

Jacob King
“Signifying Friendship”
On Macho Man, Tell It To My Heart at Artists Space, New York

Alena J. Williams
“Productive Estrangements. Remembering Nancy Holt (1938–2014)”

Artists’ Editions

Axel Hütte
Ca’Corner della Regina-3, 2012/2014

K.O. Götz
Siekri 12, 2014

Texte Zur Kunst #94
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