ArtCity-Service Bending of probabilities
Interactive art-in-public-space project.
Collaboration with Moka Farkas, Steindamm, Hamburg, 2008
The Steindamm in Hamburg is one of those Streets in every bigger city which are always in the discussion of the government: too dirty, illegal prostitution, immigrants, drug problems ….
Hamburg has, as many other cities too, a long history of using artists to “beautify” areas that they are trying to change to the “better”. But what is this “better”? Does the city ever include the habitants of the area they are trying to improve by inviting them to take part in the decision making process? Is a critical artistic point of view accepted from an artist who is supposed to make an “ugly” neighborhood look “prettier”?
To avoid the fact that artists are reduced to the role of heralds of the gentrification, ArtCity-Service, a collaboration project with Moka Farkas, invited 30 artists that are living in the neighborhood to make suggestions for a possible “RE-Activation” of the street Steindamm in Hamburg. What they send in could be seen in August 08 in the temporary space CASINO by Berndt Jasper. The second part of the project consists of involving visitors and neighbors to find ideas and possibilities for their own neighborhood. We collected wishes, suggestions, handed out questionnaires, invited people to small gatherings on the street and put up a “wish box” with 24hour access to invite people to hand in their personal wishes for a “better” neighborhood. The results of this will be taken to the City Council together with the suggestions by the different participating Artists.
The project was part of the Art-in-Public-Space Show “Walk through”