‘Kunst im Untergrund’ Highlights Berlin’s Urban Issues

Aug. 12, 2021

For the upcoming exhibition ‘Kunst im Untergrund – as above, so below,’ curated by the nGbK project group, five artists will create works dealing with social biotopes and the transformation of urban spaces. Along the Berlin underground network from August 15th until September 30th, interventions by Sasha Amaya, Clara Brinkmann, Philine Puffer, Florine Schüschke and Juli Sikorska will address new housing spaces, real-estate speculation, the migration and homemaking of plants, and urban heat waves.

The project focuses on the U8 underground line, which forms an axis that runs through the city. In the north, at Franz-Neumann-Platz underground station, artists will investigate land prices, the real estate market, housing privatization and the consequences of relocation for both humans and plants. At Leinestrasse underground station in the south, these themes are expanded to address speculative possibilities for new housing and the influence of global warming on urban space. Meanwhile, on the ‘Berliner Fenster’—the channel screened on televisions throughout the entire underground network—the role of the underground stations as a whole, including their evaluation by city dwellers, will be interrogated in a humorous and critical way. In the interplay between the works, threads emerge that connect the underground both mentally and spatially with above-ground parts of the city, while debates occurring on a global level are reflected in local structures.

Clara Brinkmann’s fictitious construction company SubUrban is a project that addresses discussions around Berlin’s accommodation market with an ironic take on the right to affordable housing. In ‘Attractive Sites for Dream Investments,’ Florine Schüschke focuses on the sale of municipally-owned real estate in the Berlin districts of Reinickendorf and Wedding and presents alternative strategies for dealing with it. Juli Sikorska’s ‘Urban Heat Island Living’ is a speculative study using sci-fi and future prototyping and modeling to examine increasing climate change in cities and imagine a sustainable future for the Berlin district of Neukölln. In ‘Neophytes,’ Sasha Amaya turns an eye to observing plant migration and reflects on the strategies that plants, as well as humans, take up in homemaking processes. Philine Puffer’s video ‘click the stars,’ made using online comments and ratings of Berlin underground stations collected from Google, highlights how our physical experience of reality has become inextricably intertwined with virtual reality.

More on each of the presented works, the exhibition locations and the full program of events can be found on the dedicated website.

Event Info

‘Kunst im Untergrund – as above, so below’
Exhibition: Aug. 15–Sept. 30, 2021
Opening: Aug. 14th and 15th
Various Locations

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