Sunday, November 7, 2010

Berlin's Kunsthalle Project Revived

Berlin can look forward to another attempt at establishing a Kunsthalle. Berlin mayor Klaus Wowereit revived the faltering project last week with a brand new proposal for an exhibition next summer. Wowereit’s latest move comes after the temporary Kunsthalle Berlin closed in August and after funding, investors, and government support had all but evaporated. Under the latest plan, artists living in the city will be asked to submit portfolios for the exhibition, which will be curated by Angelique Campens, Magdalena Magiera, Jakob Schillinger, and Scott Weaver.

“With this survey,” said Wowereit, “we hope to revitalize the debate about a permanent Berlin Kunsthalle and qualify so that the senate and city parliament will be able to make a decision with the next budget.” The exhibition, which is being presented as the result of research on the viability and the necessity of a Kunsthalle in the city, puts the artworks before the building and the staff. Wowereit has brought together an advisory board including Klaus Biesenbach (MoMA, New York), Christine Macel (Centre Pompidou, Paris), and Hans Ulrich Obrist (Serpentine Gallery, London) who will vouch for “the quality of the study.” Specific international architects will be invited to propose a design to show the artworks chosen for the final show. Humboldthafen––a port site close to both the Hamburger Bahnhof museum and the main train station––is being presented as a location.

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