Another Project Space Festival has come and gone, gracing Berlin with yet another reason to love these wonderful outlets for creative experimentation.
The very nature of these venues is what makes this event so unique, with the added feature of somewhat boundless exhibition models; the artists involved are free to truly explore the depths of their respective practices. It is because of this lack of modal constraint that may exist in larger institutions; the Project Space Festival provides an exciting and unexpected experience for the attendees.
Here are some tidbits from the last two weeks:
Primarily existing as a display window on Oranienstraße, Sox participated in the festival this year with an evening of film. The open-air cinema was situated in the courtyard behind the display window where they provided a selection of short films addressing Bull Fighting. Some disturbing, some cute (Disney's Fernando), the night was entertaining as the shouts from the bars on Oranienstraße gave the event a certain allure, as though you were secretly watching some forbidden dogma.
Musical Chair - Rubin Bellinkx
NuN is always a crowd favorite. This is largely because of the cool factor when climbing a staircase to enter the space through a Neukölln window. The room hosted a silent film by Rubin Bellinkx. Essentially 6 minutes of three dogs tearing apart a wooden chair. Great metaphor, plus the 16mm projector produced a lovely nostalgic ambience.
Lage Egal Raum für Aktuelle Kunst:
#Im Nebel – Ivan Liovik Ebel
While the fog that crept through the room made for bad picture taking, the experience and performance/reading left the crowd somewhat elated and euphoric. Passing through dimensions, as read by Ebel, takes some strength. When you take one sense away, the others are heightened, and as the fog lifted, you could finally see your neighbour and the senf stain on your t-shirt. Great stuff.
Point of No Return – Marco Montiel-Soto and Cristina Moreno Garcia
Tucked away from the piratical screams of Kottbusser Tor, Vesselroom Project boasts a perfect vestige for creative minds. Montiel-Soto and Garcia collaborate constructing an installation that visually fits with the Treasure Island theme one finds themselves in at Kotti. Video projections flanking sculptural installation filled the cozy space and people beat the rain to come out and experience the Point of No Return, transitioning through the moments between time. Complete with frog fountain, astrological iconography, and grass, there was a tiki torch/lost in paradise vibe to the whole thing.
Paul Kneale – Free Software
Getting buzzed into Import Projects always makes you feel so important, as the Charlottenburg Altbau stairwell is impressive, causing you to look at your shoes for some reason. Upstairs in the gallery, Kneale read from his large iphone, a technological survey of the problems and interactions humanity has with ‘the digital’. The crowd made themselves at home sitting about the floor like it was a frat house. During his narration, Kneale microwaved CD’s, cooking data as it were. A possible concentration of information. As an inauguration to the group show Abjects, Kneale has published instructions for ‘Free Software’ performances that question authenticity and authorship of on and offline imagery and data.
Tonight marks the final event of the festival at Neue Berliner Räume, with a lovely closing soiree tomorrow night at Der Hof. Hopefully the event led to greater exposure for some of the newer spaces, and a stronger trust on the part of the state, in terms of funding. These spaces set themselves apart from the gallery system for a reason. Their existence is necessary as they construct a fabric between the standard modes of exhibition, and provide a malleable framework within which the artist can exist on a platform without constraint.